AUTHORED BY: GENESTER WILSON-KING, MD FACOG & SARAH RUSSO – When people refer to cannabis, they often mean the flowers (buds) of Cannabis spp. These unique flowers receive a great deal of attention, and properly so. However, what about other plant parts? The cannabis leaves, stems, seeds, and roots each have their own distinct qualities and provide the possibility of botanical synergy.
Let’s disassemble them piece by piece. Check out the graphic at the end of the article for a concise summary of the plant’s sections and their specific functions. Flowers Buds Nuggets This is where cannabis’s renown lies. When cannabis is smoked or used medicinally, the flowers are used. Cannabinoids, which are found in cannabis trichomes, have been the focus of an increasing number of research on the medical properties of the plant.
This region also contains the highest concentration of terpenes. Resin, the sticky accumulation of trichomes, has been used for generations to produce hash, kief, and other cannabis concentrates. When discovered in their natural condition on the cannabis plant, “raw” cannabinoids are acidic (ex THC-A, CBDA).
When cannabinoids are exposed to heat, they convert into their neutral state. This is how CBD, THC, and other cannabinoids are consumed. Since we are just beginning to scratch the surface of the possibilities of cannabinoid therapy, terpenes, and other components, more research is necessary not just on cannabis flowers but also on other plant parts.
Leaves Encircling the plant’s buds are the distinctive “pot” leaves. The leaves shield the plant from the environment, pests, and other external agents. The sugar leaves (those closest to the flowers) contain more trichomes (“crystals”) than the fan leaves, but not nearly as many as the actual cannabis flowers.
The extra sugar leaves clipped away during the manicuring of the buds (referred to as “trim”) can be utilized in cooking or tincture production. In Jamaica, women were historically responsible for preparing cannabis leaf tea for the entire household. To preserve their health, Jamaicans of all ages, genders, and socioeconomic backgrounds use cannabis tonics.
Canniprene, a chemical found in cannabis leaves, is a potentially effective anti-inflammatory drug. The practice of juicing cannabis leaves has gained popularity in recent years. Many credit the advantages of juicing to the acidic cannabinoids (such as THCA and CBDA) present in the plant.
While cannabis leaves are rich in chlorophyll, they contain a little amount of acidic cannabinoids. For individuals wanting acidic cannabinoids, cannabis buds are the greatest option (flowers). However, tiny dosages of some acidic cannabinoids, such as CBDA, may be highly strong. One of the components of green juice is chlorophyll.
Fan leaves are loaded in phytonutrients and this substance. You may make juice, infusions, and topical treatments from fan leaves. It is necessary to do further study on cannabis leaves in order to better understand their unique chemical makeup and medicinal potential.
- Seeds When discussing superfoods, cannabis seeds meet the criteria.
- They have been consumed in China for at least 3,000 years and may be one of the most nutritionally complete meals accessible.
- They are composed of 35% protein and every important amino acid.
- In addition, they possess significant anti-inflammatory activities.
They have a 3:1 ratio of essential fatty acids, which is regarded an excellent dietary goal. The seeds of cannabis or hemp have an exterior hull and an interior “heart.” There are both whole and peeled alternatives on the market. It has been researched for its antioxidant activity and its anti-cancer qualities.
- To maximize the medical benefits of cannabis seeds, keep them on the crunchy side.
- The idea that cannabis seeds form nutrient-rich animal feed has been supported by thousands of years of feeding trials and observational data.
- Roots Despite a long history of therapeutic usage, cannabis roots have not garnered a great deal of attention in contemporary medical practice and research.
Cannabis roots have been used to treat illnesses such as fever, inflammation, burns, tumors, infection, and gastrointestinal disorders for ages. Historically, the fresh roots were pounded to get their juice. Popular techniques of preparation were topical treatments and water extraction.
- In addition to being blended with lipids such as oil or butter, cannabis roots were also infused in wine.
- Cannabinoids are not present in cannabis roots, but friedelin and epifriedelanol are abundant.
- Friedelin is the most abundant triterpenoid in marijuana.
- Epifriedelanol is a triterpenoid with potential anti-aging effects.
Modern research has investigated the analgesic, anti-inflammatory, and antipyretic properties of cannabinoid chemicals found in cannabis roots. Also investigated is its antibacterial properties. As the cannabis plant acquires heavy metals from the soil, the origin of cannabis roots used for medicinal purposes must be carefully investigated.
- Future research on cannabis roots will assist discover the optimal preparation techniques and settings for which they are most useful.
- Stalk and Stems The cannabis stalks, which are typically abandoned by producers producing cannabis for flower production, give a unique gift to humanity.
- Cannabis stalks give nearly unlimited opportunities for textiles, clothes, paper, and other uses.
The sturdy stalk is where materials that can serve as substitutes for cement, fiberglass, and insulation are produced. As it is twice as robust as wood, cannabis stalk (fiber) is renowned for its amazing strength and durability. In addition to being extremely resistant to decay, the stalks’ fiber is biodegradable, unlike plastics and many other commonly used materials.
Cannabis/hemp stalks may also be used as plant mulch. As stalks are inherently resistant to insects, having them encircle the soil in a garden can help keep pests at away. Additionally, stalks may be used as animal bedding as a less dusty alternative to straw, which is beneficial to the animals’ respiratory health.
And because cannabis stalks are more absorbent than straw, barns require fewer frequent cleanings. Some individuals utilize discarded stems that have been removed from flower buds to brew tea or extract cannabinoids. The stems contain a negligible amount of cannabinoids and are unlikely to have a significant impact.
- Until more study is completed, it may be prudent to continue utilizing stems and stalks for what they do best, namely producing superior fiber materials.
- Conclusion The vast terrain of cannabis research has taught us that the plant cannot be reduced to a single component (the buds) or target chemical (CBD, THC, etc).
Every portion of this plant can be used for nourishment, physical healing, and/or environmental improvement. How incredible is that? And much more study must be conducted on the plant as a whole to unearth more of its immense therapeutic potential. The several applications of the plant are listed below.
Can any component of the marijuana plant be smoked?
WeedHub | Which portion of the cannabis plant do you smoke? Given the variety of marijuana’s constituents, it’s not surprising that many do not know which section of the plant is smoked. Simply said, the component of the marijuana plant that is smoked is the flower.
- Only female cannabis plants produce flowers; thus, only female cannabis plants are smoked, and only female cannabis plants possess psychoactive and therapeutic properties.
- The female marijuana plant has a single, long, slender stem with huge, recognizable leaves emerging from several nodes around the main stem.
Not these recognized leaves, but the blossom or bud is what is smoked. The marijuana plant’s bloom develops at the cola or bud spot along the main stem. The cannabis plant’s primary cola, or biggest bloom, is placed at its apex. Buds will often be surrounded by smaller leaves and will have a delicate covering of hairs and white crystals.
- These crystals, known as trichomes, that develop on the exterior of marijuana flowers contain THC (tetrahydrocannabinol) and other cannabinoids, the active elements of marijuana.
- When completely mature, the female marijuana plant may reach heights of 16 feet (five meters).
- Marijuana plants do not reveal their sexuality until six months into their growth, when they begin to pre-flower.
Male plants are distinguished by the pollen sacs that grow around the nodes (where the stems connect the main plant) and by the thicker stems. The pre-flowers of female marijuana plants are covered with tiny hairs. In the early stages of growth, it is crucial to distinguish between male and female marijuana plants, as pollination from male plants will prevent nearby female plants from producing flowers.
- Rarely, hermaphrodite plants produce both male and female reproductive traits.
- Male plants are maintained to guarantee crop diversity, for use in hemp production, and for a number of other applications, including juice manufacturing.
- As female plants develop, they are pruned to encourage the formation of many buds.
After completion, the plants are trimmed and dried. Large marijuana leaves are clipped off the dried plant; they may be smoked but lack trichomes. Even though they do not contain trichomes, the smaller leaves around the buds are also commonly smoked. Therefore, the portion of the marijuana plant that is smoked constitutes a relatively tiny portion of the entire plant.
- Cannabis sativa and cannabis indica are the two most often smoked subspecies of the female marijuana plant (cannabis ruderalis is much less common).
- These two strains yield cannabis with distinct impacts and medical characteristics.
- The look of the bigger leaves of each of these kinds distinguishes them from one another.
Cannabis sativa plants have more long, thin leaves than indica plants, which have shorter, thicker leaves (ruderalis plants have only a few leaves). Now that you know what to look for, the section of the marijuana plant that is smoked, the flower of the female plant, is readily identifiable.
Remove Stems – To guarantee that you have the finest experience possible when grinding your cannabis, you should remove anything that is unnecessary. Before inserting the flower in the grinder, you must remove any long stems or other extraneous material from the cannabis.
What is the most desirable portion of a bud?
Validating the Truth Part 2: Is the top of a bud more powerful than its base? We discovered in the article that the position of a bud on the plant is significant, and that buds near the plant’s apex tend to be more potent than those towards the plant’s base.
- Growers must be aware of this and maybe make adjustments to their lighting, plant spacing, etc.
- To limit fluctuation.
- Customers will enjoy an enhanced quality and experience as a result.
- This is useful information, but what about variety inside a single bud? According to anecdotal evidence, the very tip of a flower will have the most power.
Ultimately, it is the most attractive, generally coated with trichomes. But we at Orange Photonics want to do more than make informed guesses, so we tested several buds. Cannabis Buds Evaluated from Head to Toe We chose two premium buds from an established grower of the same strain (a Sativa dominant hybrid).
- Although a test on numerous strains would be preferable, the purpose of this test was to at least provide a baseline for predicted variance.
- Each blossom weighed roughly 1 gram.
- Both were chopped in half so that the flower’s tip was removed from its base.
- The halves were crushed into a powder, and a piece of each was tested for efficacy.
Before beginning the experiment, we decided to test the LightLab’s repeatability to guarantee that the variation in bud potency could be detected regardless of analyser variance. The findings of the same sample extracted and measured three times are presented in the following table.
- Tetrahydrocannabinolic acid (THCA) is displayed since it was the most abundant cannabinoid in these flowers.
- Now that we have an understanding of the repeatability of LightLab, we can begin the experiments.
- These tests were conducted during some hotel downtime.
- The whole duration of testing was slightly over an hour.
LightLab is simple to install and use in almost any location, although I’m not sure what housekeeping would have thought had they witnessed the experiments in progress. Validating the Truth Results: Verified The findings were consistent with the story.
The apex of the flower was undoubtedly more potent than the bottom. Both buds’ tips were approximately 3% taller than their bases. In both instances, the exact same bud is being sold at a substantial discount. Discussion These findings raise some intriguing points. When a sample is delivered to a lab for analysis, the lab will analyze whatever bud is provided.
Assume for a moment that the laboratory is error-free (this is far from reality of course). If the top and bottom of the identical bud were delivered, the findings would indicate a 3% difference. It matters much what you place in the jar for lab testing.
- Second, if consistency for your clients is a priority, thorough sampling should be performed to verify that test findings accurately reflect the crop being evaluated.
- Several states are now developing sample standards, although it is still early days.
- We propose choosing a “sentinel” plant to place in the center of the grow space.
Test at least one bud from the top, middle, and bottom of the plant. Before jogging, homogenize the entire bud with a grinder. Finally, take the average of the three readings; this will give you an accurate sense of the current crop’s potency. Stay tuned for our upcoming exam: can sun exposure harm dried flower?: Validating the Truth Part 2: Is the top of a single flower more effective than its base?
Can Weed Stems Be Smoked? – When you smoke marijuana buds, you will experience a variety of pleasant benefits, such as cerebral bliss and physical relaxation. However, once all the buds have fallen off, you may be left with only the stems. When weed is not collected and chopped properly, it can frequently become coated with stems.
Should you then smoke it? Technically, it is feasible to smoke cannabis stems. When just the stems of your weed remain, you may ground them up and add them to a joint or bowl of fresh weed. However, although this will add a bit more THC to the mix, it is typically not worth it to smoke the residual marijuana stems.
Although cannabis stems still retain trace amounts of THC, the level is so low that it is hardly worth smoking. Smoking pot stems alone will not provide much of a high, and while you can combine them with fresh Cannabis Flower, the difference may not be noticeable to you.
The greatest issue is that smoking cannabis stems might have a number of disadvantages. If you smoke a joint or bowl filled with stems, you are far more likely to have negative side effects. The impacts you receive will be far more damaging to your lungs, and you will likely experience nausea, headaches, and other undesirable side effects.
Consequently, you may wish to avoid smoking cannabis stems.
Remove the stems from the buds?
Why is marijuana trimming important? – During pruning, plant buds are removed along with branches, stems, sugar leaves, and fan leaves. All of them are unpleasant to smoke and contain little trichomes, but some are present. When wet pruning, eliminating all unneeded plant debris decreases the moisture level of the buds, allowing for a more uniform drying.
Patients in many no-smoking states may experience the entire plant in a handy shape with ground flower. The flower is natural and has no additives. The current cannabinoids and terpenes are natural to the plant. Ground flower is simple to employ.
Can hermaphrodite plants be smoked?
Can hermaphrodite buds be smoked? Yes, if you truly desire it. Keep in mind, however, that the buds produced by a hermaphrodite cannabis plant will not be nearly as powerful as the buds produced by a female cannabis plant. You will still experience the affects of smoking them, but consuming cannabis concentrates is preferable.