A–z of popular cannabis slang

A–z of popular cannabis slang
Miguel Antonio Ordoñez

Even if you haven't smoked before, we're sure you've heard a few of the many, many terms people use to talk about weed. Whether you want to talk about how you're smoking, the flower itself, or just being high, there's bound to be a handful of catchy and weird terms you can use to say what you mean, without laying it all out there.

Whether you've been smoking for years or only watched from the sidelines, we're sure you know more than a few terms for weed. You might know five or so off the top of your head: pot, flower, bud, dope, Mary Jane. Those are probably the greatest hits, sure, but the discography, so to speak, goes way deeper than that. You could be talking about smoking, being high, or the different types of flower—no matter what you want to say, you'll always have a way of saying what you mean, without actually saying it.


Proceeding in alphabetical order, we'll be walking through some of the most iconic, catchy, and strange terms people use to talk about the electric lettuce.



This is a reference to the much more popular term, Mary Jane, which we'll get into later. If you really lay low when talking about weed, this is the way to go.



One of the many terms available to describe the almost-indescribable feeling of being sufficiently high. If you're baked, you've achieved a good middle ground between buzzed (slightly high) and burnt out (completely done).


This term refers to a specific preparation of cannabis. A "blunt" is essentially when weed is wrapped up in a hollowed-out cigar. Rather than conventional cigars, though, most people use the cheaper kind, which are packaged in plastic and sold at gas stations. Tobacco leaf can be used for these as well.


It's so commonplace that it's barely considered slang, but "bong" is really just the common name for a certain type of water pipe. They stand upright, have an opening to smoke out of at the top, have water stored in the bottom, and require a downstem and bowl piece to facilitate smoking.


This term refers to low-quality weed, and is a reference to how weed used to be packaged when shipped to the US. Specifically, when cartels would ship weed, they'd compact large amounts of it into the shape of a brick. It was meant to be cheap and bought in bulk, so it was usually low-quality. Given the growth of the legal cannabis market, this has become less common nowadays.


A fairly general term, "bud" is just another way to say weed. This is in reference to how cannabis grows on the plant, since it appears in the form of compact flowers when harvested.



This term refers to the leafy and green nature of cannabis. If your weed actually looks like cabbage, though, you should hold off on smoking it.


This refers to the moment when your bowl doesn't have any more smokable weed in it. It won't be completely empty, but there might only be a few scraps of ash left.


This refers to two different things. First, it's a reference to how catnip has the same effect on cats that THC does on humans. Secondly, and more commonly, it refers to low-quality (or flat-out fake) weed. By "fake weed", we mean salvia, spice, K2, and similar herbs.


In contrast, "chronic" refers to bud that is of seriously high quality. This term, of course, also refers to certain types of diseases. The use of it as slang, then, could come from the fact that marijuana has been used in clinical settings, or from the fact that it gets you “chronically” stoned.


If a heavy indica is doing its job, then it should eventually induce couch-lock after enough tokes. This describes the feeling of being so lazy and lethargic that you couldn't possibly leave the couch to get your snacks.


If you're cross faded, that means you're both quite high and drunk at the same time. Proceed with caution.



This is one of the several words people use to refer to THC concentrate. This term comes from how it's used. When smoking out of a "rig" (a type of bong used for concentrates), one will scoop a small bit of the concentrate with a "dabber" (small metal stick-like tool) and dab it onto the bottom of the "nail" (bowl made exclusively for concentrates).


Similar to chronic, this term can be used to refer to high-quality cannabis. In turn, it can be used to describe the smell of cannabis, or the smell of the room you’re smoking in.


The more insightful among you will get that this term isn't exactly positive. In fact, this is the way many anti-marijuana people used to refer to their least favourite plant. Some people still use it, but it's usually a tell that they're out-of-touch and likely ignorant about the actual effects.


This is one of the more whimsical ways to talk about a joint, a term we'll explain in depth later. This isn't to be confused with a blunt. While both are a wrapped, smokable form of cannabis, they're wrapped in different materials and don't look too similar.


Another old-fashioned term, this is the way people used to refer to weed in general. Nowadays, however, this term is far more often applied to heroin and other opioids. Using the term to speak about weed can be a sign that one hasn't personally witnessed or dealt with opioid addiction.



Like the terms chronic and dank, this term is applied to high-quality, potent cannabis. In recent years, however, it's become accepted to refer to anything from food to songs and video games as "fire". Given that it can refer to anything of high-quality, this is probably one of the most general terms on the list.


This refers to cannabis buds, whole or ground (as opposed to concentrates or edibles). Given that cannabis is a plant that produces flowers, this term isn't too detached from reality.



"Ganja" is another old-fashioned term, but it's so endearing that it's stuck around in a semi-ironic fashion. If you hear someone using it unironically, they might be the type to spend hours discussing the best Grateful Dead concert they've ever been to. In more lighthearted situations, though, it's a cute and fun term.


While we hope there's no actual gasoline in your weed, we also hope your weed can be described with this term. Like many others on this list, it's a way to refer to some seriously high-calibre weed.


A more vague term here, this is a quick and easy way to say cannabis. In case you didn't pick up on the subtle message here, both grass and cannabis are green plants.


Getting even more vague, you've got one more way to refer to cannabis.


This is a cornier version of the last term, albeit more endearing. "Green" refers to the colour, "goddess" refers to how good it makes people feel. It can also refer to the importance it has in the lives of those who use it for holistic reasons.



To be clear, this isn’t slang as much as it is a name for a certain form of cannabis, specifically the compressed kief from cannabis buds. This form of cannabis is more popular in the Middle East and certain parts of Europe, and is usually added to hand-rolled cigarettes.


Yet another term used to refer to cannabis in flower form.


Hotboxing involves smoking in a confined space such as a small room, bathroom, or car, and allowing the smoke to fill up the entire space. It's a fun way to get sufficiently high with friends.



This is just a shortening of the classic term Mary Jane, which we'll explain in detail soon.


As we referenced earlier, a joint, sometimes referred to as a "jay" (or simply "j"), is cannabis wrapped in smoking paper. It's similar in appearance to a hand-rolled cigarette, with the main difference being what's inside.



An uncommon term usually used by "free spirits" (read: hippies), this is one more way you can refer to weed in general.


While this is used as slang for any sort of weed, it actually refers to a specific strain of Cannabis indica. It's rooted in landraces local to Afghanistan, Northwest India, and Northern Pakistan, and the name comes from the Hindu Kush mountain range.



The kinder version of a previous term on this list, this is another reference to the leafy and green nature of cannabis.



One of the most common slang terms for cannabis, Mary Jane is a pun of sorts. The people who coined it looked at the term "marijuana" and picked the closest-sounding human name to use as code. Nowadays, however, people who hear the name think of cannabis before they think of anyone with that name.


This is a pretty common term, but for those uninitiated, it just refers to weed of an average or low quality. It also usually means there's an excess of stems and seeds still attached to the buds.


Munchies take cravings to the next level. This term describes the ravenous, uninhibited hunger you feel after getting high. Oftentimes, the munchies sacrifice healthy foods for sweet and salty snacks, or simply whatever is available.



If you're smoking concentrates out of a rig (a term we'll explain later), the "bowl" will be referred to as a nail. This is to distinguish it from the sort of bowls that flower is smoked out of. The vaporized dab, in turn, is sucked into the rig via a small hole.




This is another old-fashioned term for cannabis.



Yet another classic but outdated term for cannabis. Reefer is synonymous with Reefer Madness, the 1936 film made to dissuade people from using good old Mary Jane.


If you're out of weed, you need to re-up, fast!


This refers to the specific type of bong used to dab concentrates. The main differences here are the water level (there's less in rigs) and the bowl being replaced with a nail (see the N section for an explanation).


Once you've smoked a joint or blunt to near-completion, the little end of it left in your fingers is called a "roach". These are usually thrown out, although frugal smokers will sometimes save them and use the small amount of weed left later.



This is a term used to refer to a mix of strains in one grinder. Alternatively, it can be used to refer to two people mixing a bit of their own weed in one grinder/joint/blunt/bowl, etc.


If someone calls your weed "schwag", it might be time to buy some new weed. Essentially, this refers to the worst of the worst weed, considered barely smokable.


Not to be confused with schwag, shake is the stuff that falls to the bottom of a weed bag after you smoke the full-sized buds. It’s really not that bad! In fact, there's bound to be a decent amount of kief in there.


Similar to a joint, this is a blend of cannabis and tobacco rolled up in smoking paper. These are usually what you see people smoking in Europe.


Another term used to refer to quality cannabis, this is a term that references how high-quality buds are sometimes sticky to the touch. This stickiness, of course, comes from the resin stored in the trichomes on cannabis flowers.


A classic term amongst stoners for being high. The term "stoned" can encompass a wide array of high experiences, but it typically describes a heavy body-mind load from a potent strain.


And what would "stoned" be without "stoner?". Although it can be used in a derogatory sense to describe someone who only smokes weed and has no ambition, many successful cannabis users call themselves stoners with a lighthearted, community-oriented intention.



A less-common term, "tea" is how some people will refer to weed that lacks an odour. This can also be used to refer to any low-quality weed, since strains with no smell are usually not very potent.


If you're toasted, you've had just about all the weed you can bear for that session. Your eyes will be red and your mind will be elsewhere, but you'll be better for it.


This term refers to one inhalation of cannabis taken from a joint, blunt, bong, etc.


This is another nature-related term used to refer to cannabis, yet again referencing the leaves and green colour.



This is a synonym for the term dab. It's a reference to the way that THC concentrates are usually solid at room temperature and liquid when heated.


When someone asks you to go to the store and buy "wraps", they're usually asking you to get a pack of cheap cigars. These, in turn, can be hollowed out and used to make a blunt, hence the term. Alternatively, they could be asking you for a hemp wrap. Those are tobacco-free, have nothing inside to be emptied out, and serve the same purpose.



This is a quick and catchy way to refer to an ounce (28.3g) of cannabis.

Miguel Antonio Ordoñez
Miguel Antonio Ordoñez

Miguel Ordoñez is a long-time writer by trade. Utilizing his AB Mass Media and Communications degree, he has 13 years of experience and counting. He’s covered a wide array of topics, with passion lying in combat sports, mental health, and of course, cannabis.