Is live resin cannabis concentrate a new thing? Or, are they just the latest buzzword?
The increased popularity of live resin cannabis concentrates comes with the expansion of legalization. As more states come online, the market for product that excludes smoking and the health risks attached to puffing combusted smoke. Live resin concentrates get you to the magic without what’s fast becoming “old school.” But let’s take a step back!
In nature, resin is that sticky goo produced by many trees and plants. It hardens when exposed to air and will not dissolve in water. We typically associate it with pine and fir trees, but it leaches from the bark of many trees, woody shrubs, and herb flowers. And, it will appear where the host plant is “injured” by pruning, pests, or other antagonists.
Resin issues as a protectant turning into amber-like crystals as it hardens. Trees like pine, juniper, spruce, and cedar are known for their fragrant resin. It also comes from flowers like gardenia, morning glory, and ginseng among others. And, it is the key to the fragrance from dill, caraway, dill, and cannabis.
Resin is the source of amber, turpentine, varnish, lacquer, incense, and scores of useful products. History has used it for medical purposes as astringents, diuretics, laxatives, and stimulants. And, natural and synthetic resins are used in thousands of chemical and commercial products.
Cannabis comes with its own resin, a sticky substance exuding scents unique to that strain. The higher the cannabis quality and potency, the richer the resin. Rich with cannabinoids and terpenes, it is also the source of the strain’s medicinal and psychoactive benefits. So, if you don’t like the skunk and diesel aromas, you can blame it on the resin.
If you grow your own or are examining a bud, you know the resin comes from trichomes. These are almost microscopic glands on flowers, branches, leaves, and stalks. If you handle the flower or nug, you will feel the stickiness and smell the terpenes as the handling breaks those pods open.
The most prominent terpenes (aromatic hydrocarbons) have pronounced odors and medical benefits:
- Caryophyllene: Caryophyllene produces aromas of cinnamon and black pepper for antianxiety and anti-inflammatory effects. Check Rock Star, Skywalker, Super Skunk, and Super Silver Haze.
- Humulene: You’ll find Humulene in clove and basil. Its pungent qualities relieve nausea and appetite loss. Check Headband, Liberty Haze, and White Walker.
- Limonene: This terpene is the same one that adds fragrance to citrus fruits (and many household products). A natural anti-fungal, Limonene aids the plant’s survival. It’s believed to relieve stress and improve mood. Check Super Lemon Haze, Sunset Sherbet, and Wedding Cake.
- Linalool: The Linalool terpene reminds you of lavender with all its relaxing qualities. Check Lavender, L.S. Confidential, and Special Kush.
- Myrcene: Myrcene is the most pronounced terpene present to some degree in most cannabis strains, and plants with over 0.5 percent myrcene are identified as cannabis Indica. Myrcene has anti-inflammatory properties. Check Banana Kush, Lime OG, and Girl Scout Cookies.
- Pinene: An alpha form of Pinene gives fir, pine, and spruce their strong aromas. A beta form is less prominent but still fragrant in herbs. Chemists and pharmaceutical firms optimize their anti-inflammatory and bronchodilator properties. Check Blue Dream, ChemDawg, and Strawberry Cough.
There are many more terpenes and examples of strains defined by their terpenes and unique combination of terpenes.
Live Resin Cannabis
Unlike shatter and wax, Live Resin Cannabis skips the routine curing process that produces dried leaf. Producers flash freeze the cannabis plant immediately following harvest. They extract the resin then using butane and a vacuum oven to protect the terpene’s profile in a loaded concentrate for dabbing.
Because Live Resin Cannabis is flash-frozen at harvest, the process protects its full spectrum status with a broader range of cannabinoids and terpenes. You might consider it a “purer” and “fuller” spectrum extract.
It should have a delicate balance between the THC crystals and terpene liquid, what they call “sauce.” It’s a gelatinous gem somewhere between gold and amber used with your rig or dab straw. The sticky and gooey qualities make it difficult to handle, and the flavor and potency in live resin is not something you want to lose through inexperience or poor temperature control.
You can also use dab pens or vape pens for a user-friendly convenience. But you should ask your budtender or do some research on the most appropriate pens with ceramic dishes, crystal dual coil, and/or temperature control. And, the sauce can be worked into canna-butters, oils, and other forms for later use.
Storing Live Resin Cannabis can be tricky.
- Glass jar: To avoid damaging exposure to air, you should choose a small glass jar with a tight twist top. However, gummy extracts can stick to the sides. If possible, you should vacuum seal the jar and store it in a cool dark place.
- Parchment paper: You cut enough parchment paper for the extract you want to store. Folding the paper gently around the content, you’ll want to avoid crushing or squeezing the sample. It will store in a cool dark place, but you would do better to place the parchment paper package into another airtight container.
- Silicone containers: You can easily remove resin extracts from silicone containers without sticking. It must be medical grade silicone, but containers will keep your product clean and uncontaminated. Silicone containers are good for short-term storage, but they are not airtight.
- Freezing: In warm climates, you’ll want to freeze or refrigerate the extract to preserve its qualities and make it easier to handle. You’ll want to vacuum seal it in a parchment package or glass jar.
Live resin cannabis in high demand
Live Resin Cannabis contains larger deposits of cannabinoids and terpenes. The enriched flavor, aroma, and potency have made it the top-shelf choice for sophisticated and experienced users. But the increased demand has raised the price, so you may want to work your way up to the use, care, and storage of Cannabis Resin Cannabis.