When you take a close look at marijuana buds, you will notice the glistening tiny hairs that cover the surface – these are trichomes. The word trichome comes from the Greek word “trikhoma” that means “growth of hair”. The trichomes are responsible for giving each strain of marijuana its’ unique smell, taste, and effects.

3 Types of Trichomes

trichomes 3types The Best Video Explaination About Cannabis Trichomes

The cannabis plant has 3 types of glandular trichomes. The largest, that you can see with the naked eye, are called “capitate stalked trichomes”. Cannabinoids like THC and CBD are most prevalent in these trichomes.

1. Capitate stalked trichomes first appear during flowering and can reach 150 to 500 micrometers in length. These trichomes cover the female flower bracts (small leaves that cover the seed sites) and also the tiny leaves that accompany the buds.

2. The second type of trichomes found on the cannabis plant are called “capitate-sessile”. These trichomes are smaller than the stalked trichomes, and form before flowering. Visible in the immature cannabis plant, the capitate-sessile trichomes appear to lie flat against the leaves and stalk, however, they have a stalk that is about the size of one cell. These trichomes contain cannabinoids, but they are weak and not fully developed.

3. The third type of trichomes found on the cannabis plant, “bulbous trichomes”, are also the smallest. These trichomes that grow to between 15-30 micrometers are the result of secreted resin from head cells. When fully saturated, the bulbous trichomes will appear as a pointed shape scattered all over the growing plant.

Natural Defender

trichomes defender The Best Video Explaination About Cannabis Trichomes

“All glandular trichomes produce cannabinoids, terpenes, and flavonoids. The plant produces these sticky trichomes to protect itself from insects and other predators”.

For example, the terpene “myrcene” is responsible for the skunk-like odor often produced by marijuana strains like Sour Diesel. The trichomes develop this terpene as a result of its’ environment, specifically to deter herbivore predators like deer.

Trichomes are also very acidic as they contain THC-A. The acidic nature of trichomes is again used as a defense mechanism from potential predators. Fortunately, the cannabis plant did not evolve to protect itself from humans.

In fact, cannabinoids like THC that are found in trichomes are poisonous to insects and some animals, but that same poisonous effect is what we desire when using cannabis as a medical and recreational drug.

The Power of Trichomes

trichomes power The Best Video Explaination About Cannabis Trichomes

“ We know that those cannabanoids in the trichomes are psychoactive, and we absolutely love that”.

After taking a closer look at the tiny trichomes we can see that they are responsible for the aspects of cannabis that we adore. There are many techniques used to stimulate trichome development that you should be aware of especially if you are a marijuana grower.

Take special care of your buds when you are drying/curing them, because it is possible to knock the trichomes off of the buds, thus removing some of their flavor and valuable cannabinoids.

Take a look at the Trichome Institutes video that dives deeper into the power of trichomes.

Trichomes by the Trichome Institute from Jim Nathanson on Vimeo.

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Lane Tr

I am from Pennsylvania where I lived until moving to Denver in 2013. My interest in the cannabis industry is what drew me to Colorado. I am an aspiring Industrial Hemp Baron, golfer, FIFA champ, long boarder, dog lover, and a potculture trendsetter. Send me a message with any post ideas or industry news. Thanks for making me the writiest of the righters!
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