What are terpenes in CBD? Benefits, history, and top 5 terpenes

Most plants contain oils, and some plants, like cannabis, contain unique oils that aren't found in other species. Plant oils that have aromas are called aromatic, and among these aromatic oils are special substances called terpenes.

While terpenes aren't exclusive to cannabis, they're highly concentrated in all types of Cannabis sativa flower regardless of the dominant cannabinoid. Each terpene has a different chemical structure, and these complex plant oils affect your body in widely varying ways.

Every cannabis strain has terpenes, but the identity and ratio of these aromatic molecules vary from strain to strain. If you want to experience everything that these compounds found in cannabis have to offer, having variety is key. Get introduced to the top 5 cannabis terpenes, and learn which Secret Nature CBD flower strains you should choose for getting "terped out" any time you want.

Cannabis isn't defined by cannabinoids alone

Early research into cannabis plants determined that this species produces especially resinous oils in its buds, which appear in the female plants. The composition of the oils expressed varies depending on the genetics of the Cannabis sativa strain in question, but researchers largely classified the compounds they discovered into flavonoids, cannabinoids, and terpenes.


Present in many different foods, flavonoids aren't thoroughly researched in cannabis. It's known, however, that Cannabis sativa expresses a wide array of different flavonoids dependent on genetics. These substances have widely-documented antioxidant and anti-inflammatory effects, but it's unclear how these effects exert themselves in cannabis.


Unique to cannabis, cannabinoids are fascinating compounds that are currently supplanting quite a few pharmaceutical and supplement verticals. Intoxicating THC is the most famous cannabinoid, followed closely by CBD, the dominant cannabinoid in most products offered at secretnaturecbd.com. The cannabis industry is now expanding into CBG, CBN, CBC, and all the other eight main cannabinoids.


While terpenes are most abundant in coniferous trees, they're also present in many other plants and even some insects. Among non-pine terpene sources are citrus fruits and cannabis, and these aromatic oils have many beneficial properties. Some terpenes work together or collaborate with cannabinoids to manifest unique effects.

What are the benefits of terpenes?

The first and most obvious benefits of terpenes are taste and aroma. Without terpenes, cannabis wouldn't smell "dank," and oranges wouldn't smell so appetizing when you tear open their peels. Beyond these surface benefits, however, deeper mysteries lurk.


The effects of many terpenes are similar to those exerted by CBD. Each of these compounds offers different benefits, but some examples of ways that terpenes might impact human physiology include:


  • Antioxidant
  • Anti-inflammatory
  • Pain
  • Depression/anxiety
  • Epilepsy
  • Antibacterial
  • Antifungal

Top 5 terpenes in hemp

Let's introduce five of the terpenes you're most likely to find in CBD products:

1 Myrcene

It's the most common terpene in cannabis. Myrcene is responsible for the "dankness" that makes hemp flower so distinctive.

Aroma profile

Herbs, earth, musk

Vaporization temperature


Reported benefits

Myrcene may complement the effects of the major cannabinoids. While not as potent as CBD, CBG, or CBN, myrcene is currently being researched for potential anti-insomnia and antioxidant applications.

Sources other than cannabis

Lemongrass, mango, thyme

2 Limonene

Also present in the peels of citrus fruits, limonene is the second-most common terpene in hemp. With a distinct citrus aroma and flavor, limonene balances earthy or bitter hemp constituents. Limonene appears to boost the neurological effects of cannabinoids rather than providing significant antioxidant or anti-inflammatory benefits.

Aroma profile

Citrus, lemon, orange

Vaporization temperature


Reported benefits

Limonene is not approved as a treatment for any condition. This terpene is, however, currently being researched for potential anxiolytic, antidepressive, analgesic, and anti-inflammatory properties.

Sources other than hemp

Citrus fruit peels

3 Linalool

The linalool terpene is most famously present in lavender plants, and research suggests that linalool is behind this flower's many beneficial properties. Some cannabis strains also contain linalool, and those that do might offer a wide variety of impressive benefits.

Aroma profile

Lavender, floral

Vaporization temperature


Reported benefits

In lavender as well as in cannabis, linalool is currently being researched for a wide variety of different benefits. Lavender has been used for centuries as a stress and sleep aid, and researchers are also pursuing the possibility that linalool has neuroprotective properties.

Sources other than hemp

Birch bark, lavender

4 Caryophyllene

Caryophyllene is the only terpene that has a direct effect on the endocannabinoid system, making it similar to a cannabinoid itself. This terpene has a spicy, bitter taste that's reminiscent of pepper or cloves.

Aroma profile

Wood, pepper, cloves, spice

Vaporization temperature


Reported benefits

In addition to fighting inflammation, pain, and all the other symptoms usually alleviated by terpenes, caryophyllene also appears to impact your digestive health.

Sources other than hemp

Caryophyllene is found in cinnamon, black pepper, and cloves

5 Pinene

Also found in pine needles, pinene has a bitter, intense flavor that complements fruitier or sweeter strains. Like some non-intoxicating cannabinoids, pinene might reduce the negative effects of THC.

Aroma profile


Vaporization temperature


Reported benefits

Pinene appears to exert the same effects as other terpenes.

Sources other than hemp

Pine, various spices

Terpene-rich CBD flower strains

Without further ado, here are the three best Secret Nature strains for exploring all that terpenes have to offer:

Frosted Kush - 19.5% CBD, 22.4% Total Cannabinoids, Frosting, Berries, Gas, Indica, Relax, Indoor Grown

Frosted Kush is styled after THC-rich OG Kush but without any intoxicating components. This legendary cannabis strain has both spicy and sour overtones, and these attributes are largely caused by the terpenes caryophyllene and limonene. Secret Nature Frosted Kush is terpene-rich, delicious, and lovingly manicured until each bud shines.

Terpene details

  • Caryophyllene: Responsible for the bitter taste in pepper, caryophyllene also adds a bitter, pungent layer to many cannabis strains.
  • Limonene: Limonene tastes and smells like citrus fruit.
  • Myrcene: With a herbal, clove smell, myrcene is a potent antioxidant.

Customer reviews

"Often I find several of the flowers I order looking different than what is advertised which I was expecting with the frosted kush but I was sorely mistaken. Once the can was cracked I was greeted with a very pungent and impressive terpy aroma. The bud was saturated in trichomes and when smoked the flavor was very satisfying. What impressed me the Read more about review stating Tasty and lives up to its name.most was the cure job as well as the trim job. Top shelf indeed." - Ben S.

"Great looking buds and nice container. Taste is nice." - Chris P.

*NEW* Citron - 18.4% CBD, 20.8% Total Cannabinoids, Sweet Lemons, Candy, Haze, Sativa, Uplift, Indoor Grown

Famous in both its CBD and THC forms, Citron is about as fruity and sativa as you can get. Unsurprisingly, limonene plays a critical role in this strain's terpene makeup, but there are a few other Citron terpenes you should also know about.

Terpene details

  • Limonene: Among other benefits, limonene figures prominently in cannabinoid research.
  • Terpinolene: Named due to its resemblance to every major terpene aroma profile, terpinolene may offer cardiovascular benefits.
  • Ocimene: Sweet and herbal, ocimene may offer antioxidative benefits.

Customer reviews

"Earthy and crisp taste followed by a nice clean feeling." - Avin O.

" Citron is one of my big favorites!! Love the taste and smell More than anything though it gives me focus when and where I need it." - Todd T.

Cherry Cough - 17.0% CBD, 21.6% Total Cannabinoids, Sweet, Cherry, Gas, Indica-Rest, Indoor Grown

Cherry is the main aroma that shines in this CBD take on legendary THC-rich "cough" strains. The exact web of terpenes that causes this iconic smell and taste is very complicated, but there are a few key terpenes that play major roles in Cherry Cough.

Terpene details

  • Myrcene: Along with limonene and caryophyllene, myrcene is one of the most common cannabis terpenes.
  • Pinene: True to its name, pinene smells like fresh pine needles.
  • Caryophyllene: This common terpene in CBD oil has been heavily researched for its potential medical benefits.

Customer reviews

"These buds are beautiful. Very pure and clean smoke. No throat burn. Notes of cherry coke." - Kory G.

"The Smell was spot on gas, cherry, and dank.  The looks where small buds and covered in trichomes and bright orange hairs.  The taste was amazing and the CBD effects where immediately strong and long. Over all I would definitely recommend this strain" - Shawn F.

Common terpenes FAQ

Lingering questions? The following terpene FAQ section will clear things up:

Which CBD products contain the most terpenes?

Full-spectrum and broad-spectrum CBD oil contain the most terpenes aside from hemp flower itself. The title of CBD oil product with the most terpenes, though, goes to Secret Nature live resin vape cartridges.

In contrast to conventional carboxylated oil, live resin is extracted from hemp plants before they are dried or cured. The result is an incredibly terpene-rich product that is even more concentrated than smokeable hemp flower.

What are some options beyond the common terpenes?

Here's a list of terpenes we haven't covered yet that you might want to explore as you find out everything hemp flower has to offer:

  • Humulene
  • Bisabolol
  • Eucalyptol
  • Camphene
  • Trans-nerolidol
  • borneol
  • Valencene
  • Geraniol

Which terpene smells/tastes like black pepper?

Caryophyllene. On its own, the pungent, bitter aroma of this terpene might be overwhelming. Combined with other hemp terpenes, however, this hemp constituent is utterly delicious.

Organic, terpene-rich, low-THC cannabis flower with Secret Nature

Whatever we may learn about their effects, terpenes remain the reason Secret Nature hemp flower smells and tastes so amazing. We've gone out of our way to bring out the best terpenes in our top-shelf strains at ideal concentrations, and the results are clearly legendary—just check out our hundreds of five-star, verified customer reviews.

CBD products with plenty of terpenes bring out everything cannabis plants were meant to be. Whether it's our manicured, indoor-grown CBD flower or our live resin CBD cartridges, terpenes abound in Secret Nature products, which allows you to enjoy CBD the way nature intended.

Click one of the links above to visit a Secret Nature flower product page. Each strain offers a new terpene combination—collect them all to gain total mastery over CBD flower and its entire web of complex benefits.

DISCLAIMER: No products offered at secretnaturecbd.com are intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease. none of these statements have been evaluated by the FDA.