For most weed stuff, flowers (or buds) do the most. So what use do cannabis leaves have? Surprisingly, these plant parts find great benefit in many cannabis products you’ll find in the industry today!
For centuries, the cannabis plant has been prized for its impressive medicinal and therapeutic qualities. Recently, there has been a surge in the popularity of products made from cannabis leaves. Weed products derived from these plant parts offer an array of health benefits that can boost the quality of life and treat several medical conditions.
This blog post will discuss cannabis-based products that you may not have known existed — particularly those made with cannabis leaves. The selections may surprise you. Keep reading to find out!
What makes cannabis leaves special?
Cannabis leaves are special because they contain various therapeutic compounds that offer a wide range of health benefits. These compounds include cannabinoids, terpenes, and flavonoids. Each of these compounds has unique therapeutic properties that can be used to treat various medical conditions.
Cannabinoids are a class of therapeutic compounds that are found in cannabis leaves. These compounds include CBD and THC. Each cannabinoid offers a unique therapeutic property that – when used correctly – can alleviate or treat a wide variety of medical conditions.
CBD is a non-intoxicating cannabinoid that effectively treats a variety of medical conditions. Though CBD can be found in the cannabis plant, the cannabinoid is found in much greater abundance in hemp plants. Thanks to its unique interaction with the body, CBD has been used to treat muscle spasms, mood disorders, chronic pain, and more.
THC is the primary psychoactive compound in weed that effectively treats chronic pain, nausea, and other medical conditions. This cannabinoid’s psychoactive properties are responsible for making you high when you smoke weed or consume other cannabis products.
Aside from CBD and THC, cannabis contains numerous other cannabinoids. It is estimated that about 100 cannabinoids are present in the Cannabis sativa and Cannabis indica plant. Some of these minor cannabinoids include the following:
- CBC (cannabichromene): This non-psychoactive cannabinoid possesses anti-inflammatory and analgesic properties. It’s also been shown to help stimulate the development of brain cells.
- CBDV (cannabidivarin): Studies show that this cannabinoid has anticonvulsant properties, meaning it can be used to treat seizures and muscle spasms.
- CBG (cannabigerol): This cannabinoid is believed to have anti-microbial and anti-inflammatory properties.
- CBN (cannabinol): Considered to be a weaker version of the psychoactive THC, CBN is stored once THC ages within the plant. Early research suggests that this cannabinoid can treat insomnia and pain caused by chronic conditions.
- THCV (tetrahydrocannabivarin): Despite sharing the same three letters with THC, this cannabinoid does not have psychoactive effects. Instead, it contributes to the benefits of cannabis with its impressive anti-inflammatory and analgesic properties.
Cannabinoids work by interacting directly and indirectly with the endocannabinoid system (ECS). As a complex network, the ECS functions primarily in maintaining the body’s chemical homeostasis. By interacting with this system, cannabinoids can help to restore balance and improve health.
THC binds directly to endocannabinoid receptors to induce its effects and catalyze bodily reactions. It can stimulate appetite, increase pleasure, and reduce pain when this happens. Direct binding also influences the “high” one’s strength from consuming marijuana products.
CBD also binds to cannabinoid receptors, but it does so indirectly. Instead of binding directly to CB receptors, CBD interacts with other receptors in the body that help modulate the activity of the entire ECS. This interaction helps to explain why CBD is effective for medical use.
Terpenes refer to aromatic compounds found in plants, including marijuana and hemp plants. Each marijuana strain and cannabis species has a unique terpene profile that contributes drastically to the unique experience and flavour you get. Harnessing the therapeutic qualities of these terpenes can help treat a wide variety of medical conditions and symptoms.
Some of the most common cannabis terpenes include:
- Myrcene is great for improving sleep quality, helping with pain relief, and even treating cancer. It’s a slightly sedative compound that contributes to a peppery aroma and flavour.
- Linalool can help alleviate and treat the common symptoms of various mood disorders like anxiety and depression. It’s a relaxing compound that contributes to floral aroma and flavour.
- Limonene has natural antibacterial properties. It’s a stimulating compound that contributes to a citrusy aroma and flavour.
- Terpinolene induces calming and uplifting effects. When found in cannabis, it contributes to a piney aroma and flavour.
- Alpha-pinene binds the receptors in your brain that allow you to breathe easier — this means it can be used as a bronchodilator! It also has anti-inflammatory properties. Alpha-pinene contributes to a piney aroma and flavour.
Flavonoids are a class of therapeutic compounds that are found in cannabis leaves. These compounds include cannflavin A and B, anthocyanins, and more. These flavonoids have been shown to provide anti-inflammatory and antioxidant effects.
Some of the most prominent flavonoids found in cannabis leaves include the following:
- Cannflavin A and B: These are the only two flavonoids that have been isolated from cannabis. They are structurally similar to aspirin and ibuprofen, respectively.
- Anthocyanins: These give flowers and other plant parts a red-to-purple colour. They have natural antioxidant properties that can ward environmental stressors.
- Quercetin: Found in many plant-based foods, this unique flavonoid has anti-inflammatory and antioxidant qualities. Quercetin is widely available in health supplements.
- Other flavonoids: Many other flavonoids are found in cannabis leaves, but these are the most studied thus far. More research is needed to determine the full extent of their therapeutic potential.
Cannabis leaves versus other parts
When people rave about cannabis, they’re usually all about the flowers (better known as buds). But we’re here to talk about leaves. And what better way to gauge the qualities of cannabis leaves than by comparing them with other parts of the Cannabis sativa plant?
Leaves vs. seeds
There are a few things to consider when it comes to leaves vs. seeds. The first is that leaves have a higher THC content than seeds. THC is produced in the leaves, and the seeds don’t have as much psychoactive compound.
Leaves also have a higher CBD content than seeds. CBD is produced in the leaves, and the seeds don’t have as much of the therapeutic compound.
The other main difference between leaves and seeds is that leaves are psychoactive, while seeds are not. This means that when you consume leaves, you’ll get high, while consuming a hemp seed product will not have this effect.
On the flip side, cannabis and hemp seeds are often considered a “superfood.” That’s because of its unique nutritional content. Cannabis seeds are rich in beneficial fatty acids and contain all nine essential amino acids.
Leaves vs. flowers
If health benefits are used as a metric, cannabis leaves are quickly overshadowed by cannabis flowers. But don’t underestimate these little guys – they pack a punch! Here’s a look at some of the key differences between cannabis leaves and flowers:
- Cannabinoid content: Cannabis flowers tend to have higher levels of THC than leaves. This is because the flowers are the part of the plant harvested for their cannabinoids. CBD is present in both flowers and leaves, but it is usually more concentrated in leaves.
- Terpene profile: Flowers tend to have more terpenes than leaves. However, leaves benefit from having unique terpenes such as canniprene. This cannabinoid, found in abundance among the Cannabis sativa plant fan leaves, shows promising anti-inflammatory qualities.
Overall, the flowers are a better choice for those looking for a potent psychoactive experience. However, leaves can be an excellent option for those who are interested in the therapeutic benefits of CBD.
Products Made from Cannabis Leaves
Cannabis-based products are becoming increasingly popular due to their therapeutic properties. Some of the most common medical conditions treated with cannabis-based products include chronic pain, arthritis, anxiety, depression, cancer, and more.
Several cannabis-based products are derived from cannabis leaves that you may or may not have heard of. From oils to capsules, the uses of these potent plants is genuinely limitless.
Hash is a concentrated form of cannabis made by compressing the plant’s resin glands. This resin contains high levels of THC and other cannabinoids, which is why hash is so potent.
Several ways to make hash, but all involve heating the cannabis resin until it becomes solid. To extract resin from cannabis leaf, you’ll first need to sift some kief.
This can be done by rubbing the leaves over a fine mesh screen. The kief that falls through the screen will contain the resin glands, which can be heated and turned into hash.
Undoubtedly one of the most popular cannabis-based products, cannabis oil is just as it’s named. Thanks to its high concentrations of cannabinoids (and even terpenes), infused oils have been used extensively by medical marijuana patients. This product can be used in many ways — it can be ingested orally or applied topically.
Cannabis oil is made by extracting the cannabinoids from the flowering plant. The cannabinoids are then suspended in an oil solvent known as a carrier oil. These carrier oils dilute the product and further increase the bioavailability of the good stuff.
One of the prime selling points of cannabis oil is its versatility. It can be used with or as the base of many other weed products.
For example, you can make a large batch of cannabis cooking oil and then use it to make individual servings of cannabis edibles. A few drops of cannabis oil can give your favourite beauty products an extra cannabinoid boost.
Cannabis capsules are another great way to consume cannabis oil. They are made by dissolving the cannabinoids in a carrier oil, such as coconut oil or olive oil, and then encapsulating them into vegan capsules. Cannabis capsules offer a convenient and discreet way to take your medication.
Consuming cannabinoids in capsule form allows your body to absorb a higher percentage of the good stuff than other delivery methods. This makes them effective in treating chronic pain, arthritis, anxiety, depression, and cancer.
A cannabis tincture is a liquid extract made from cannabis leaves. As one of the oldest delivery methods, tinctures offer a time-tested alternative to smoking weed. A cannabis tincture is made by soaking cannabis leaves in alcohol or oil.
The cannabinoids dissolve into the liquid, resulting in a potent extract that can treat a variety of medical conditions. Tinctures make cannabis use much more accessible to medicinal marijuana patients. They can be taken orally or applied topically.
A cannabis salve derived from cannabis leaves functions perfectly as a topical ointment. Well-made cannabis salves target localized areas of concern, such as joint pain or specific conditions. When applied topically to the affected area, they penetrate through skin layers and interact with the cannabinoid receptors found in the dermis.
This interaction provides relief from pain, inflammation, and other symptoms. Cannabis salves are an excellent option for people who want the therapeutic benefits of cannabis without smoking it.
Cannabis tea is made by brewing ground cannabis leaves in hot water. The cannabinoids dissolve into the water, resulting in a potent infusion that can be consumed either hot or cold. Cannabis tea is a great way to enjoy all the great things cannabis has to offer without having to blaze one out at all.
You can also opt to infuse regular tea with cannabis leaves instead to give your drink that cannabinoid kick while keeping the weed flavour in check.
Topicals refer to cannabis-infused products – usually oil-based ones – applied externally (on the skin). They’re typically made by dissolving cannabinoids in a carrier oil such as coconut oil or olive oil. Some topicals come with added essential oils to further boost efficacy.
Since potency isn’t much of an issue in topicals, cannabis leaves make a great addition to whatever you intend to apply to your skin. You can also customize topicals by adding your favourite essential oils. This will give you a product that not only treats your condition but smells great too!
Cannabis-infused edibles are a great way to enjoy the therapeutic properties of cannabis without having to resort to cannabis smoking. They are made by infusing ground cannabis leaves into food or drink.
When ingested, the cannabinoids interact with the cannabinoid receptors in the digestive system. This interaction provides relief from pain, inflammation, and other symptoms. Cannabis-infused edibles come in several delectable varieties, including baked goods, candy, and drinks.
Cannabis grind is a finely ground powder made from cannabis leaves. These are often made from pot leaves that’s already been smoked or vaped. Though it’s lost most of its original potency, it still contains some beneficial compounds that you’ll probably want to stretch out.
This cost-effective way to use leftover weed has a variety of uses. Leaf grind can be tossed into edibles or added to your joint to give it a little more oomph. You can also use it as a topical ointment or massage oil. Whatever you do, don’t waste those leftovers!
Cannabis vape juice
Cannabis vape juice is made by extracting the cannabinoids from cannabis leaves and then dissolving them in a carrier oil, such as coconut oil or olive oil. The resulting mixture is then bottled and sold as vape juice.
When vaped, the cannabinoids interact with the cannabinoid receptors in the lungs. This interaction provides relief from pain, inflammation, and other symptoms. Cannabis vape juice is a great way to consume cannabis oil discreetly and efficiently.
What to do with cannabis trim?
Cannabis trim refers to the leaves and stems trimmed from the cannabis plant during the harvesting process. They’re often compared to shake, which refers to the leaves that fall off naturally. Unlike shake, trim contains fewer cannabinoids, terpenes, and other beneficial compounds.
Though they cannot make a potent psychoactive product, you can still use trim to maximize your cannabis output. That’s because trim still contains trichomes that may come with rich resin production. With a bit of know-how, you can turn the entire plant into an actual bundle of gold.
Collect the kief
Kief is a powder made from the trichomes of cannabis plants. When smoked or vaporized, it provides a potent high similar to that of hashish. Kief can also be used to make hashish.
To collect kief, you will need to use a three-chamber grinder. The first chamber will grind the cannabis leaves into small pieces. The second chamber will filter out the small pieces, leaving the kief in the third chamber. You can then collect the kief and use it to make hashish.
Enhance your edibles with trim.
If you have some spare trim laying around, don’t throw it away! You can use it to enhance the potency and flavour of your edibles.
Before doing so, you’ll need to decarboxylate them. Decarboxylation is a process that activates the cannabinoids in cannabis. This is done by heating them to a specific temperature for a set amount of time. Once they’ve been decarboxylated, you can add them to your food or drink.
Create your own cannabis topical
Another great way to use cannabis trim is to use them for your homemade topicals. The potency issue becomes a non-issue when it comes to topicals since the product is applied to the skin. And since the extract you get from trim is milder, it’s suitable for sensitive skin types.
To make your cannabis topical, simply follow these easy steps:
- Grind up your trim until it’s a fine powder
- Add the powder to a carrier oil, such as coconut oil or olive oil.
- Heat the mixture on low heat until it’s melted.
- Pour the mixture into a container and let it cool.
- Once it has cooled, you can apply it directly to the skin. Remember that a little goes a long way, so start with a small amount and increase as needed.
Make or amplify your concentrates or tinctures.
You can make or amplify your cannabis concentrates or tinctures by using trim. Trim contains fewer cannabinoids, terpenes, and other beneficial compounds than flower, but it still includes some beneficial compounds that you’ll want to extract.
To make a concentrate, you’ll need to dissolve the trim in a solvent. The most popular solvents for this purpose are alcohol and oil. Once the trim has been dissolved, you can strain the plant material and bottle the resulting concentrate.
You can also make a tincture by soaking the trim in alcohol. Once it’s been soaked, you can strain out the plant material and bottle the resulting tincture. Tinctures are a great way to consume cannabinoids discreetly and efficiently,
Turn it into compost.
You can also turn cannabis trim into compost. This is a great way to recycle the plant and get valuable nutrients for your garden.
To make compost, you’ll need to:
- Collect all of your cannabis trim
- Chop it into small pieces
- Mix it with soil and other organic matter
- Store it in a dark, dry place
- Wait a few months
Once your trim’s fully composted, you can add them directly to your soil to boost its nutrient content. The composed trim will also improve overall soil quality.
Making the most out of cannabis trim: Tips and tricks
With so many ways to enjoy cannabis flowers (vape it, roll it in a joint, or turn them into edibles), it’s easy to overlook the leaves. What do you do with the parts of the plant that you typically trim off during the harvesting process? These leaves and stems can be used to make various products that you may not have known existed.
If you’re planning to make good use of your batch of cannabis trim, it helps to know some insider tricks. This is to ensure you aren’t sacrificing quality while being cost-efficient!
- Focus on sugar leaves. The smaller sugar leaves are the most potent part of the plant. They have the highest concentration of cannabinoids, including THC and CBD. Trim off the larger fan leaves and save them for later use.
- Invest in a high-quality bud trimmer. A good bud trimmer can make quick work of your cannabis trim. This will help you to save time and conserve your valuable resources.
- Consider using a dehydrator. If you’re not in a hurry, you can dry your cannabis trim in a dehydrator. This will preserve the cannabinoids and terpenes, resulting in a better-quality product.
- Always decarboxylate trim before using it. This is a process that activates the cannabinoids, making them more potent. To do this, bake your trim in the oven at 240 degrees Fahrenheit for 30 minutes.
- Use silkscreen or a dry-sift tumbler to collect kief. Kief is a potent by-product of cannabis that can be smoked or used in edibles. They can be rather tedious to collect manually, so employing tools can help speed up the overall process.
Cannabis leaves are a valuable part of the cannabis plant that shouldn’t be tossed in the garbage. These versatile green parts of the cannabis plant can be used in many ways to create a variety of products, including edibles and topical treatments.
The next time you find yourself with an abundance of trim or leaf after harvesting your crop, consider making these creative uses! We hope you’ve enjoyed learning about the many different ways cannabis leaves can be used in your beauty, wellness, and home products.
If you have any questions or want to know more, please reach out! For now, we’ll leave you with some parting words from our team of experts at Budlyft — BUY SATIVA ONLINE and BUY INDICA ONLINE here today!