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Terpenes? I Hardly Know Her!

Do you smell it? That smell. A kind of smelly smell. The smelly smell that smells… smelly.

I know you know what I’m talking about. It’s no secret that hemp has a funky smell, but have you ever stopped to consider why? That smelly smell from the magical plant is from terpenes! But wait. What are terpenes? An excellent question, but one that's difficult to answer.

Hemp research, in the past, has been met with resistance. But, as the stigma surrounding hemp dissipates, researchers and scientists are discovering far more about the hemp plant than ever expected. Hemp science is both fascinating and complex.

While no one at Lewis Lemon claims to be a scientist, that doesn’t stop us from doing our due diligence to understand the plant we love so much and share what we’ve learned with our community. After all, knowledge is power!

What are Terpenes?

According to Medical News Today, “Terpenes are aromatic compounds found in many plants.” Research published on Science Direct, claims that “terpenes are a large group of organic compounds.” You probably have smelled a terpene without even realizing it!

Organic matter such as pine, orange, mint, lavender, basil, lemon, and hops all contain terpenes. But many of those things smell nothing alike, how could they all contain terpenes? Another great question!

So far, 30,000 terpenes have been discovered in all sorts of plants including hemp. According to researchers, “more than 150 different terpenes… have been identified in cannabis.”

Easily recognized, terpenes from hemp plants, are found most commonly in the trichomes on the flower bud; they look almost glittery and leave your fingers feeling sticky. Terpenes are also found on the stem and leaves of the plant but in smaller amounts which make terpenes vital to the growth and development of hemp plants.

Terpenes contribute heavily to the magical plant’s immune system. Think of terpenes as a mode of communication that helps the plant interact with its environment - both pollinators and predators (think herbivores). Just like with any plant, its environment – sunlight, water, pests, climate, soil nutrients, etc. – will affect the survival of a plant, and in the case of hemp, the environment will determine terpenes levels.

How do Terpenes Effect Humans?

Cannabinoids like THC (Tetrahydrocannabinol) and CBD (Cannabinol) have dominated hemp research for decades but researchers are beginning to discover that terpenes could also have beneficial effects on the human body! Terpenes “display unique therapeutic effects that may contribute meaningfully to the entourage effects of cannabis-based medicinal extracts.”

As more research is conducted, scientists have discovered that terpenes can affect humans similarly to plants. In other words, if terpenes aid the hemp plant’s immune system and the overall survival of the plant – when consumed by humans, terpenes could prove therapeutically beneficial! Although terpene research is still a relatively new endeavor in hemp science, it should not be overlooked.

Interested in reading more about how terpenes affect the body? Find out more!


Terpenes, like hemp, require more research to fully grasp the potential benefits that lie within. Until then, kick back, light up, and bask in the wonderful aromas of hemp.

Want to experience the bliss of terpenes for yourself? Head over to the Lewis Lemon Hemp shop to explore our selection of organically grown Delta-8 and CBD products. Check here for your state’s laws about Delta-8 products before purchasing.

Stay high!

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