Seedsman Blog
cannabis glossary
Home » The A-Z Cannabis Glossary

The A-Z Cannabis Glossary

Trying to keep tabs on everything in the world of cannabis can seem like a full-time gig sometimes – between the terms, slang, and all those abbreviations, staying on top of it all is a daunting task for the best of us. But don’t worry – as always, Seedsman has you covered with this cannabis glossary

To lay everything out from A to Z would take a month-long series, but we’ll list some of the most common ones here in alphabetical order, starting with A through to Z, to keep you on top of the most common terms you’ll come across in the world of weed. If you’ve ever wanted to try a dab but don’t know what to grab, or you need to know the difference between CBD and CBN, read on…

Alcohol Extraction

A means of making hash oil, where essential oils and trichomes are stripped from the plant by using ethyl or isopropyl alcohol to strip out the plant material and evaporate the alcohol.


The tools of the trade for cannabis users, including rolling papers, roaches, bongs, vapes, grinders, stash jars – anything you use to help store or smoke cannabis

Adult Use

Legal cannabis not designated for medical use

April 20th

Also known as 420, after the American date format. While debate rumbles on over the origins of the term, this date has become the day of cannabis pride internationally and is celebrated in cannabis culture by advocates, legal reformers, recreational users and more.


A rolling technique in which you roll backwards, ensuring a more even burn and more taste from the flower itself. If you struggle with rolling regular joints, try backrolling instead. It may take time to master, but it’s worth the effort.


Butane hash oil, made by dissolving marijuana plant in butane, results in a thick, sticky oil with very high THC levels.


Marijuana packed inside a  hollowed-out cigar or rolled in cigar paper, which burns longer than a regular joint.


A water pipe used for smoking cannabis. A bong is essentially a filtration device which uses water to cool the smoke as you inhale.


A pocket-sized pipe, commonly glass, with a water reservoir at the bottom to cool the smoke.


The flower of the cannabis plant, the part you grind up and smoke. Also known as a nug.


Member of staff at a cannabis dispensary who will recommend and sell you weed, as well as answering your questions.


These are the compounds in the plant which interact with your endocannabinoid system to produce effects on the human body. Common cannabinoids include THC, CBD, CBN and CBG


Cannabidiol, the second most common of the main cannabinoids in the cannabis plant. CBD has gained notoriety for its medicinal properties in treating pain, inflammation, anxiety and nausea, as well as a host of other incredible benefits. Non-psychoactive when isolated from the THC.


Another cannabinoid, CBN (cannabinol) is formed when THC breaks down and becomes weaker and far less psychoactive unless consumed in large doses. Research on CBN is fairly new, but already studies show it has potential for pain management, as a sleep aid, and for neuroprotective properties.


Highly potent consolidations of cannabinoids, made by dissolving cannabis in its plant form into a solvent (see BHO) then formed either as sticky oils, mouldable masses, or resinous bits known as shatter. Concentrates are typically a lot stronger than cannabis flowers.


The process of slowly, gradually drying flowers from the plant to allow for maximum flavour


A dose of concentrate (see above) which is ‘dabbed’ onto a hot surface, and the vapour inhaled as it begins to melt.


A word used to describe a strong-smelling sticky strain of high-quality cannabis


An outlet specialising in the sale of safe, legal cannabis. You’ll find budtenders hard at work here, recommending the right strains for your needs.


Cakes, cookies, gummies, candies, breads and so much more. Any foodstuff infused with cannabis extracts, but they require longer to take effect due to the ingestion method. We have recipes for delicious edibles you can make yourself, available right here on the Seedsman blog!

Endocannabinoid System

A group of receptors in the human body, which cannabinoids bind with to create a series of effects which can be recreational (psychoactive) and medicinal. CB1 and CB2 receptors are the chief among cannabinoid receptors, with CB1 regulating the release of serotonin, dopamine and glutamate, and CB2 regulating immune signalling and inflammatory responses throughout the body – among other things.

Entourage Effect

The combination of different combinations of cannabinoids and terpenes working together – a type of synergy created by the combination. For example, if using a strain with a balanced ratio of THC and CBD,  memory impairment experienced may be less than in a high-THC strain.


An extremely well-packed joint or blunt, good for sharing with a group.


The bud. The hairy, sticky, crystal part of the cannabis plant that we smoke or break down into concentrates.


A device made for breaking up cannabis buds into smaller pieces to smoke. Often metal or plastic, with a series of ‘teeth’, small spikes which break up the bud when you turn the parts of the grinder.


A resinous, brown or black material traditionally made by compressing cannabis flower, but can also be achieved by other methods. Hash is then burned, rolled, or broken off in pieces and can be smoked, chewed, or if you’re really brave, swallowed.

Head Shop

A retail outlet trading in cannabis paraphernalia and other items relating to cannabis culture and consumption. (see Accessories for examples of what you may find in a Head Shop)


The act of smoking cannabis in a small, confined space, with no ventilation. In theory, the buildup of excess smoke gets you higher. Popular locations for hotboxing include cars and bathrooms.


A cross between two genetically different cannabis plants, often done purposefully to achieve the most desirable traits of each plant.


A method of growing plants which puts the roots in water instead of soil. In hydroponics, nutrients are added to the water via solutions, allowing growers greater control over nutrient uptake and general plant stability. There is a consensus that plants grown hydroponically have a cleaner and more distinct flavour.

CANNABIS glossary


Shorter, bushier and with a more compact flower structure than its sativa counterparts, indica is a species of cannabis plant which traditionally produced more relaxing effects with sedative qualities.

Jack Herer

Also known as The Hemperor, Jack Herer was an American cannabis right pioneer and long-time advocate for the legalization of marijuana. Seen as founding father of the global cannabis community, Herer also owned a head shop, and was a pioneer of the glass marijuana pipe. He’s the author of two best-selling books on cannabis and hemp, but the name Jack Herer is also given to a sativa-dominant strain of cannabis created in his honour.


A cannabis cigarette, which may be hand or machine rolled and contain ground cannabis flower along the length of the rolling paper, with or without tobacco, often tied at one end and filtered at the other. Joints are arguably the most common method of cannabis consumption. Often abbreviated to ‘Jay’.


A potent, crystalised, resinous powder created by shaking the trichomes off the cannabis plant, or captured at the bottom of a grinder. Also referred to as crystals, kief can be added to a joint and smoked, or used in baking or the manufacture of extracts.


A kind of subset of indica variety cannabis plants originating in the Hindu Kush mountains of Afghanistan and Pakistan. Known for its strong, earthy, pine-scented strains with relaxing effects. Kush has become a slang name for cannabis in general, but the term refers to a specific type of cannabis.

CANNABIS glossary


An extremely hardy variety of cannabis plant that has adapted to thrive in the environment of its geographical location, and often named in part for its geographical origin, e.g. Afghan or Thai. It’s hard to come by an original landrace strain these days, but the hybrids which have come about from the original landrace strains are likely to be far more potent than their landrace ancestors.


A popular terpene found in cannabis as well as other plants, limonene is named after its lemony scent and taste. It’s known to be anti-fungal, antibacterial and has the benefit of being a mood lifter and anxiety reducer. You’ll find limonene in strains like Lemon Haze, Jack Here, Durban Poison and OG Kush.


A floral and spicy terpene useful in the treatment of anxiety, depression and insomnia. You’ll find Linalool in strains such as Amnesia Haze and Grandaddy Purple.

Mary Jane

A popular slang term for marijuana, once used as a covert way to discuss the drug without mentioning it by name. Although it didn’t take a genius to crack the code, surely.


A state of increased appetite following the consumption of cannabis, where the desire for, interest in, and enjoyment of food are ramped up significantly.


A powerful terpene known for its sedating, relaxing effects, with a spicy, earthy flavour. Myrcene can be found in strains like Blue Dream, OG Kush and Purple Urkel.


A synthetic pharmaceutical which mimics THC and is used for the treatment of nausea and vomiting from chemotherapy, as well as an analgesic for neuropathic pain.


Short for nugget, nug is a term used to describe a bud of cannabis flower.


A term used to describe strains (OG Kush being arguably the most notorious, with Larry Lemon OG being another example). Debate still continues as to whether OG is short for  ‘Ocean Grown’ (as in on the west coast of the USA), ‘Original’ or ‘Original Gangsta’.

Oil Rig

Also known as a dab rig, an oil rig is a device usually made from glass, and used to hold concentrate while it’s heated with a butane torch before the user inhales the vapour.

CANNABIS glossary


A slender pipe used for smoking cannabis, so-called due to the small amount of weed it can hold, roughly the amount for a single hit.


A terpene with known properties including pain relief anti-inflammatory, anti-anxiety and bronchodilation (opening airways). Described as earthy and pine-tasting, pinene can be found in strains like Blue Dream and Cannatonic.

Pothead or Pot Head

A frequent user of cannabis, or someone regularly found to be intoxicated from weed.

“Steve’s turned into a real pothead since that trip to Amsterdam.”


A joint prepared earlier, already rolled. Pre-rolls can be bought form some dispensaries, as well as in the famous coffee houses of Amsterdam.

Recreational Use

Cannabis consumed purely for pleasure, rather than any medicinal benefits (even though it may produce them).

Reefer Madness

An anti-cannabis propaganda film made in 1936, which painted a dangerous and inaccurate negative stereotype of cannabis users by implying that it caused psychosis and turned people into criminals.


To take a good hit from a bong, pipe, joint or other smoking device. Can also be used to describe being high, as in “ripped”.

“As soon as I get home, I’m going to do a huge bong rip, then relax on the couch.”


The very butt-end remainder of a joint. Also used in some areas to describe a homemade filter placed in the end of the joint you inhale from.

Roach Clip

A device used to hold the butt-end remainder of a joint so you can still inhale the last of the joint without the risk of burning your fingers.


A low-THC variety of cannabis plant that has autoflowering properties and can survive extremely harsh climates. The name ‘Ruderalis’ means ‘growing among waste’. First identified growing in Siberia, and found growing wild in other parts of Russia, Ruderalis is often high in cannabidiol.


An easy-to-make concentrate made by compressing flowers, kief or hash. Rosin is highly potent, but unlike other concentrates, it doesn’t require a solvent like butane or alcohol to manufacture.


The other main species of cannabis plant, cannabis sativa differs from its indica counterpart in many ways, but chiefly in that it grows to be a much taller plant with more uplifting, cerebral effects. Sativas are often favoured by people who want a more positive effect without the couch lock or tiredness associated with indicas.

CANNABIS glossary

Secret Agent

A covert way to smoke cannabis, in which tobacco is shaken out of a regular, filtered cigarette, then replaced with cannabis, giving the visual appearance of a normal cigarette.


Another name given to a type of concentrate derived from Butane Hash Oil. Shatter has a clear appearance, is hard and brittle, and will shatter if you drop it.


A term for any type of rolling papers used to make joints.

“I need to run to the store because we’re almost out of skins.”

Skin Up

A term popular in Great Britain, meaning to roll a joint.

“It’s your turn to roll, buddy. Skin up.”


While skunk has become a generic term for cannabis, its origin is as a hybrid variety of cannabis famed for its highly pungent aroma. Skunk is an adaptable strain with a quick flowering time.

Space Cake

A slang name for a cannabis edible.

“I ate a space cake before I left the house, so I’m going to be buzzed for a while.”


A slang name for a cannabis joint. In some countries, a spliff specifically includes tobacco as well as cannabis, whereas in other countries, a spliff specifically includes weed only.


A device used to mask the smell of cannabis smoke, typically homemade by packing a cardboard tube with dryer sheets. After inhaling your weed, blow the smoke into the sploof, and hopefully it comes out the other end smelling of dryer sheets.


A supply of cannabis, its location not public knowledge.

“Party at Janine’s place tonight. Bring your stash!”


A term that describes cannabis intoxication, borrowed from the historical act of stoning, where one was knocked unconscious (or worse) with stones.


Term used to describe differing types or breeds of cannabis, a particular variety of cannabis plant.

“I tried a high-THC strain last week, and it was fantastic.”


A group of organic compounds found not only in cannabis, but in other plants. Terpenes give cannabis its variety of aromas and flavours, as well as modulating the effects of the cannabinoids in the plant. Examples include linalool, myrcene, pinene, and limonene.


The common shortening of tetrahydrocannabinol, the most abundant cannabinoid in the cannabis plant and the one that carries the psychoactive effects, as well as an abundance of medicinal benefits.


Liquid cannabis elixirs which can be taken orally, or added to foods and drinks.


Translucent, sticky, hair-like glands found on the cannabis plant and often give strains their frosty, sugar-coated appearance. Trichomes are the magic jewels which carry the cannabinoids such as THC and CBD, and the terpenes responsible for the flavours and effects of cannabis


A vape, vaporizer or vape pen is a battery-operated device which allows you to vaporize cannabis oil or concentrates, effectively inhaling the good stuff without the health risks of combustion. Vapes act fast, heating the concentrate to below the point of combustion and allowing you to dose easily and use discreetly.

Wake and Bake

The act of smoking cannabis in the morning


A common slang name for cannabis, fairly self-explanatory due to its plant status.

Zigs or ZigZags

A brand of rolling papers which has become a generic term

“If you’re passing a store on the way over, can you grab some Zigs?”

Cultivation information, and media is given for those of our clients who live in countries where cannabis cultivation is decriminalised or legal, or to those that operate within a licensed model. We encourage all readers to be aware of their local laws and to ensure they do not break them.

Duncan Mathers