We know that the marijuana plant has all kinds of medicinal benefits to offer us, but how much do we know about the flower itself? In this article, we’re breaking down the cannabis plant, piece by piece, to familiarize ourselves with the terms! While it’s not necessarily important for the average user to know these terms, it sure is interesting!
Breaking Down the Cannabis Plant
Cannabis plants can be male, female, or even hermaphrodite, but the flower we use is always female. The male plants exist simply to fertilize the female plants. Hermaphrodite plants can technically do both, but they’re not nearly as helpful or easy to work with, for that matter. I think it’s safe to say that just about any adult can recognize the marijuana flower. Cannabis grows on long, skinny stems, with those iconic flowers extending out from the nodes.
The Cola refers to the cluster of tightly grown buds. Smaller Cola can be found along the lower branches, however the main Cola will be found at the very top of the plant.
Pistil and Stigma
The reproductive parts of the plant reside in what we call the Pistil. Stigma are the vibrant, hair-like strands of the Pistil. As the flower matures, the stigmas change color, going from white to yellow, orange, red and eventually brown. While the Stigma plays an important role in the reproductive process, they don’t affect the potency or taste of the bud.
Bract and Calyx
The layer surrounding the female reproductive parts is called the Bract. Perhaps the most important part, these green, tear-shaped leaves are heavily covered in resin glands. These glands contain the highest percentage of cannabinoids out of all of the different plant parts. Cannabinoids, of course, are the crucial therapeutic elements of the plant, including THC and CBD.
Inside of the Bract is the Calyx, which is the translucent layer that covers the ovule at the base of the flower.
Although they are extremely tiny, you will notice a layer of crystals on the cannabis bud. This crystal resin (referred to as Kief, when dry,) is secreted through transparent, mushroom-shaped glands. These glands are found on the leaves, stems, and Calyxes. Trichomes are clear, bulbous globes that primarily exist to protect the plant. With that being said, they also are responsible for secreting an extremely important element, called Terpenes. These are the aromatic oils that play a massive role in not only smell, but medicinal effect, as well. Along with Bract, Trichomes also contain a significant amount of cannabinoids.
This all-natural healing plant is just incredible, isn’t it? While it’s not entirely crucial for you to know these terms, it can help you better understand the lingo when you’re at the dispensary!