Cannabis Vocabulary and Terms to Know

Cannabis has a lot of slang. Here’s a vocabulary list of all the words you need to know to communicate with the cannabis community.


1. Abaca – A Philippine banana plant known popularly as “Manila Hemp,” due to it’s bast being harvested for fibers. It’s in no way related to the hemp plant, but you’ll still see some cannabis businesses using this slang term in their names.


2. Bhang – Processed cannabis in India. Bhang is made by grinding cannabis flowers and leaves into a paste, which is often used as an ingredient in food and drinks. Bhang-brand edibles in the U.S. are not made of bhang and are simply misappropriating the name.

3. Bong – A water pipe (typically glass) similar to a hookah, but made for smoking cannabis. Bongs are filled with water (and sometimes ice) in order to filter smoke and allow for a smoother hit. It’s derived from the Thai word, baung.

4. Bowl – The part of a bong that holds the cannabis. A bowl is inserted into the bong’s downstem and lit. Once the bong is full, the bowl is removed and the hit is inhaled.

5. Blunt – A cigar that has the tobacco removed and is then filled with cannabis. Basically it’s a joint made with tobacco paper. Backwoods, Swisher/Optimo, White Owl, and Phillies are among the most popular blunt-wrap options.

6. Bubbler – A small, portable bong the size of a smoking pipe.

7. Budder – A form of cannabis concentrate with a creamy, opaque color and waxy texture. Budder is often runnier than honeycomb – both are wax.

8. Buds – The resin-secreting flowers found on female cannabis plants containing the highest concentrations of THC/CBD. Bud is also a slang term for cannabis.

High Times Gonzo Glass Art Cannabis MJBizDaily Las Vegas Rio 2015


9. Cannabis – Cannabis is an annual, dioecious, flowering herb that produces several cannabinoids unique to the plant. Among these, THC and CBD are the most well know to the general public as providing psychoactive benefits.

10. Carb Cap – A carb cap is designed to match the size of the dab nail and form a seal for low-heat vaporizing in a dab rig. Carb caps are used on domeless nails and are typically made of titanium, ceramic, or quartz.

11. Cheeba/Cheba/Chiba – Slang for cannabis, derived from Caribbean Spanish. Spelled differently in Cheeba Chews (cannabis-infused Tootsie Roll-type candy), Cheba Hut (cannabis-themed sandwich shop), and online forums discussing chiba.

12. Cherry – The lit part of a bowl, joint, blunt, etc. When cannabis is cherried, it’s bright orange and smoking. When no more burnable material is left, it’s cashed (short for cashed out, like at a casino when you’re done gambling).

13. Clone – Clones are cannabis plant cuttings meant to grow another plant with the same genetics.

14. Concentrate – When THC trichomes are rinsed, squeezed, or otherwise extracted off the cannabis plant and winterized to remove fat molecules, it’s called a concentrate. Concentrates come in a variety of forms and are typically made with solvents, though Rosen tech relies on heat/pressure.

15. Cone – Pre-rolled papers meant to be filled with cannabis.

16. Cotton Mouth – A slang term for Xerostomia, cotton mouth describes the dryness of the mouth experienced when smoking cannabis.


17. Dab – Dabbing is the act of vaporizing a small amount of cannabis concentrate in order to inhale and get high. The term comes from the phrase, “just a dab will do ya,” used to warn first-time dabbers that they only need a small amount of the powerful concentrate vs smoking buds.

18. Dank – High quality. Dank was once solely used to describe cannabis, but potheads adapted the term to describe anything high quality.

19. Doobie – Slang term for a cannabis cigarette. Doobie is Scooby Doo’s middle name, the inspiration for the Doobie Brothers, and was often used by Chris Farley’s motivational speaker character Matt Foley when describing how to end up living in a van down by the river.

20. Dope – Derogatory term for drugs, used by government officials. When used on the streets, it typically means heroin, as heroin users are looked down upon by potheads.

21. Downstem – The piece of the bong that holds the bowl. If the downstem is broken, the bong is basically useless, though it’s also the most fragile piece.

22. Dutchie/Kutchie – A kutchie is a communal pipe used in Jamaica to smoke cannabis. When the song, “Pass the Kutchie” was remade as “Pass the Dutchie” for American audiences, the term came to be known for smoking a blunt made from a Dutch Master cigar. It was eventually watered down to mean all blunts, though some potheads will swear Dutch Master is best because of the song they don’t even realize is a remake.

trimmed marijuana nugget harvest Brian Penny buds trimmer


23. Edibles/Medibles – The generic term for cannabis-infused food and drinks. Medical patients prefer using the term medibles to separate themselves from potheads, but it’s the same stuff, regardless of how you choose to use it.

24. Errl – Slang for cannabis concentrates/extracts. The term originated in the south, where southern accents made it sound like people were saying “errl,” when they were saying “oil.” “Here” is pronounced “hurr” for much the same reason.

25. Extract – Both the process of separating cannabis concentrates from plant matter (verb) and a term for cannabis concentrates (noun).


26. Fatty – A blunt or joint filled to its maximum capacity with cannabis.

27. Fire – Dank.

28. Flower – Cannabis buds


29. Ganja – The Sanskrit word for cannabis.

30. Glass – A generic term to describe any glass bong or pipe used to smoke cannabis.

31. Grass – Slang for cannabis, used by hippies in the 1970’s prior to Gen X changing the vernacular to “weed” in the 1990’s.

32. Green – Slang for cannabis, replacing “weed” in the early 2000’s as a way to discuss purchase deals over text/phone without triggering suspicion.

33. Grinder – Designed for grinding herbs, grinders are used to shred cannabis buds to make it easier to load/smoke in papers, glass, etc. An ideal grinder has three chambers – one with grinding teeth, one that stores the ground material, and one to hold kief that falls through a screen from the ground material storage chamber.

Hunter s Thompson Art Infusion Versability Cannabis Cup
Infusion Project is a great bunch of talented artists…


34. Hashish – Hash is a form of compressed kief (or, in the case of bubble hash, concentrate extracted with ice water solvent). Hash is a popular way to smoke cannabis in Arabic regions.

35. Hemp – Both a cannabis sativa bred with low THC levels and the fiber, oil, seeds, and stalks used to create hemp products, such as hemp seed foods, hemp oil, wax, resin, rope, cloth, pulp, paper, and fuel. In states where THC and/or CBD is illegal, industrial hemp may be legal, and both cannabis and hemp have separate legal issues.

36. Herb – Slang for cannabis, used both because the plant is a flowering herb and as an ironic reference to oregano. When caught with a bag of ground cannabis, teenagers would often tell their parents it’s ground oregano, which looks similar yet smells/tastes entirely different.

37. Honeycomb – Also known as wax or crumble, honeycomb is the opaque, airy form of cannabis concentrates that looks like a honeycomb.

38. Hybrid – A crossbred mix of Indica and Sativa cannabis plants.


39. Indica – The short and bushy form of cannabis, optimized for indoor grows. Indicas are responsible for the body high and couchlock feelings associated with cannabis.

40. Indo – Slang for indoor-grown cannabis, as many connoisseurs claim to refuse to smoke outdoor-grown cannabis. The term was popularized by hip-hop music.


41. Joint – A cannabis cigarette.


42. Kief/Keef/Kif – The trichome dust that falls from cannabis during harvesting, trimming, grinding, and other handling. High-end grinders have kief screens to separate and collect kief, as do high-end trimming trays.

43. Kind/Kine – Pidgin is the Creole language used in Hawaii, and kine is a cornerstone of the Hawaiian Pidgin language, meaning “excellent.” Hawaiians use kine to describe the high-quality cannabis buds they’d sell to haole. Mainland Americans (called haole, a derogatory  term) started referring to high-quality cannabis buds as kind buds.


44. Live Resin – Most concentrates are extracted from dried (cured) cannabis plants. Live resin is extracted from freshly harvested cannabis, giving it a different terpene/terpenoid profile than regular concentrate.

Americana Marijuana


45. Marijuana/Mariguana/Marihuana – Slang for cannabis, derived from Mexico.

46. Mary Jane – Slang for marijuana, popularized by the Rick James song.

47. Mota – Mexico-Spanish slang for marijuana.


48. Nail – A bowl used for dabbing cannabis concentrates instead of smoking. The nail is preheated with a propane or butane torch, then a dabber is used to drop the concentrate on the nail to be evaporated and inhaled.

49. Nug – A nugget of cannabis. Concentrates labeled as “nug run” are extracted from buds instead of trimmings. Though it should be noted those nugs are the ones too small to sell, not the kola nugs.


50. Oil – Used as a generic term interchangeable with concentrates and extracts, oil is typically used to describe cannabis concentrates in the form of gooey shatter with a syrupy texture.


51. Paraphernalia – Any equipment for using, storing, making, or concealing any drugs. This includes everything on this list, and could include the list itself, should a judge decide to go after me for no reason.

52. Papers – Rolling papers used to make cones and joints.

53. Percolator – An extra chamber in high-end bongs that creates more bubbles by enabling air/water circulation.

54. Pinner – An underfilled joint, made with as little cannabis as possible.

55. Pipe – Any device used to smoke cannabis. Pipes can be made of metal, glass, wood, plastic, or any household item/materials.

56. Pot – Slang for cannabis that became popular in the 1960’s.

57. Pre-roll – A pre-filled joint, typically made with schwag and other unsaleable buds.

58. Purp – Purple cannabis, often grown with a black light.


59. Re-up – Buy more cannabis to refill the stash.

60. Reclaim – Cannabis resin in a dab rig.

61. Reefer – Slang for cannabis, popularized by the film, Reefer Madness.

62. Resin – The black tar left over from smoking cannabis in glass.

63. Rig – A bong used for dabbing cannabis concentrates.

64. Roach – The last bit of a joint or blunt. A roach is too small to hold with your fingers and should only be smoked with a roach clip or in a pipe or bowl.


65. Sativa – The tall, thin form of cannabis, optimized for outdoor grows. Sativas are responsible for the head high and energetic/creative feelings associated with cannabis.

66. Schwag – Low-grade cannabis not salable in retail marijuana dispensaries.

67. Sinsemilla – Highly potent cannabis buds grown without seeds.

68. Shatter – A form of cannabis concentrats that resembles hard candy. The lighter the shatter’s color, the stronger it is, and clear/off-white shatter is the most potent.

69. Spliff – British slang for a cannabis cigarette.

70. Stash – A supply of cannabis.

71. Stoner/Pothead – Stoners and potheads are the derogatory terms used by medicinal users to separate themselves from recreational users. Personally I’m a proud pothead stoner, and any medical user who thinks they’re better than me can suckle on my fat, veiny cock.

Charlotte's Web Cannabis Crops
Charlotte’s Web Cannabis Crops


72. Tincture – Liquid extracts made from cannabis, mixed with either alcohol or vegetable glycerin. Tinctures are meant to be taken sublingually (under the tongue) for maximum effectiveness. A tincture is an edible for someone who’s not hungry.

73. Toke – The drawing of a puff from a cigarette or pipe containing cannabis.

74. Topical – Cannabis that’s meant to be applied externally.

75. Torch – Typically a butane or propane torch used to preheat a nail for dabbing. Torch can also be used to describe any lighter.

76. Trees – Slang for cannabis popularized in the 2000’s and 2010’s as a way to discuss smoking/buying cannabis via text without triggering NSA monitoring programs.


77. Vape – Slang for evaporation, a way to consume drugs without combusting and smoking them. Dabbing is a form of vaping, though vaping can also be done with dry herbs and liquid ejuices in ecigarette tanks.


78. Wax – A form of cannabis concentrates consisting of honeycomb and budder. Any opaque cannabis concentrate can be called wax.

79. Weed – One of the original slang terms for cannabis, weed has cycled up and down in popularity, but has maintained consistent usage since the 1920’s.

80. Wrap – A cigar wrapper used in a blunt.


81. 420/710 – 420 is the number associated with cannabis, and 710 denotes dabbers. While the origin of 420 is unknown, 710 spells “OIL” upside down. If you want to get high with someone, the best times to do it are either 4:20 or 7:10.

Brian Penny High TimesBrian Penny is a former Business Analyst and Operations Manager at Bank of America turned whistleblower, troll, and freelance writer. His work has appeared in High Times, Cannabis Now, Fast Company, Huffington Post, The Street, and Hardcore Droid.


Dr. Brian Penny is a former Business Analyst and Operations Manager at Bank of America turned whistleblower, troll, and freelance writer. You can find his work in Cracked, High Times, HuffPost, Lifewire, Forbes, Fast Company, and dozens of other places, although much of it is no longer under his name. Dr. Penny loves annoying fake media.

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