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Dispensaries are filled with several different types of cannabis products. If you’ve never been inside one before, you might find yourself quickly overwhelmed by the selection alone. You may also hear several terms you may or may not know. Here are some of the most helpful weed terms that will enable you to navigate your local dispensary and find what you need.

different weed terminology


A budtender is a dispensary employee. They’re your go-to cannabis expert. They know all about the different strains they sell, as well as information about the various types of products in the dispensary. If you have questions, they have answers.


When looking at a dispensary menu, one of the first things you’ll likely notice is that the strains are listed in Indica and Sativa categories. You may also see strains listed as “hybrid.” Indica and Sativa refer to the physical traits of the cannabis plant, as well as some of the types of effects you can expect to feel. Indica strains generally provide a body high, helping to relax and unwind. Sativa strains, on the other hand, provide increases in energy, productivity, and creativity. Hybrid strains offer a mix of both.


You likely already know at least a little about CBD and THC, the two most abundant cannabinoids in cannabis. The plants have more than 100 cannabinoids, many of which provide unique benefits. Ones to note include CBN, CBC, and CBG.

Terpene Profile

Cannabis plants contain a variety of terpenes, with different strains having different profiles. Terpenes are responsible for the bud’s aroma and flavor. They also play a role in some of the effects you feel, such as relaxation, sleepiness, and energy.


Many product labels state “full-spectrum,” “broad-spectrum,” or “isolate.” Full-spectrum products have most of the cannabinoids, terpenes, and flavonoids of the original plant. Broad-spectrum is similar, except that they don’t have any THC. Isolates are single cannabinoid products, such as CBD or THC.

Entourage Effect

The entourage effect refers to cannabinoids, terpenes, and flavonoids all working together. While it’s technically a theory, there is plenty of anecdotal evidence that demonstrates that these compounds work better together than they do alone.


Concentrates are cannabis-derived products that require the separation of cannabinoids, terpenes, and other compounds from the plant. Processes may involve the use of solvents, or they may only require heat and pressure. Concentrates vary greatly in texture depending upon the method of separation. They’re much more potent than the original flower.


An extract is a type of cannabis concentrate that involves the use of a liquid solvent to separate cannabinoids and terpenes from plant material. High-tech machines pass butane, propane, ethanol, or CO2 over the plant to draw out the desired compounds.


Vaping has become a popular alternative to smoking that involves the use of a tabletop vaporizer or a vape pen. You vaporize the bud or cannabis oil (instead of combusting it) to create a cleaner inhalable substance. Other weed terms related to vaping include carts and vapes.


Topicals are cannabis-infused products that you apply to your skin. Creams, lotions, and balms provide localized relief without the risk of getting high, even if you use a high THC product. The line also includes transdermal patches, which do allow the cannabinoids to penetrate deep enough to get into your bloodstream. As a result, these products can get you high.


Edibles are cannabis-infused foods and beverages. They include baked goods, gummies, lozenges, chocolate bars, hard candies, coffees, teas, waters, and more. The thing to understand about edibles is that they take much longer to take effect than other products, and the effects last longer, too.

Knowing Your Weed Terms

These are just a few of the many cannabis-related terms you’ll likely hear (or see) at the dispensary. If you hear anything you’re not sure about, don’t hesitate to ask your budtender. They’ll be your guide during your visit and will do their best to ensure that you have the best experience possible.