Sliced mango on a cutting board

Myrcene: The Most Abundant Terpene

If you read the headline, you already know what myrcene is, but there’s so much more to it than just being one of the many terpenes found in cannabis. In this guide, we’ll talk more about this interesting compound and cover questions like: 

  • What is Myrcene?
  • What Does Myrcene Smell Like?
  • What Does Myrcene Taste Like?
  • What Cannabis Strains Have High Levels of Myrcene?
  • FAQs About Myrcene

What is Myrcene?

Myrcene, or beta myrcene as it’s sometimes called, is one of the most common monoterpenes found in cannabis. There was even a study performed in the late 90s that showed myrcene makes up over 60% of the terpenes found in marijuana. But that’s not the only place you can find it. In fact, myrcene is also used as a fragrance in a lot of household products and can be found in some foods.

What Does Myrcene Smell Like?

Like other terpenes, myrcene tends to have an earthy scent that some cannabis consumers equate to balsam. Still, others suggest they note a hint of sweetness in the scent of myrcene, similar to clove. If you’ve ever smelled a mango and noted its earthy sweet smell, that could be due in part to myrcene, which is abundant in mangos.

What Does Myrcene Taste Like?

Much like its scent, it’s easy to identify the myrcene terpene by taste if you’ve eaten a mango. Mangos are, without a doubt, sweet, but they have those tangy, peppery notes that give mango its unique flavor, which can be attributed to myrcene. Myrcene is also found in hops—the kind used in making beer—and it helps give beer its peppery flavor notes

What Cannabis Strains Have High Levels of Myrcene?

Because myrcene is so abundant in cannabis, it’s pretty easy to find in a variety of strains. That said, these are some of our favorite myrcene-rich strains you can find on our shelves:

White Widow

Sativa-Dominant Hybrid

Cross Brazil sativa and South Indian indica and you get White Widow, a sativa-leaning hybrid strain that’s been popular since the ’90s. This hybrid strain started in the Netherlands but has grown in popularity around the world. It has moderate to high levels of THC (18-25%), low levels of CBD (1%) and just a pinch of CBN, too (1%).

White Widow is popular not just for its effects but for the way it looks—it’s covered in white, crystal trichomes. In those trichomes is myrcene, which gives White Widow its sweet, peppery flavor with a citrus aftertaste. 



If you love a balanced hybrid, look no further than Tangie—the result of a cross between California Orange and Skunk. Tangie tastes and smells just like a tangerine (another sweet-meets-spicy fruit thanks to myrcene), and it’s popular among both recreational cannabis enthusiasts and medical marijuana patients. That being said, it does have moderate-to-high THC levels (19-22%), so be sure to start slow with this one if you’re new to cannabis. 


Sativa-Dominant Hybrid

This sativa-dominant hybrid marijuana strain was created when Space Queen met Orange Skunk, and it’s been popular ever since. It earned its name because it tastes not unlike jellybeans, but it smells like citrus fruits and mangoes—thanks to its myrcene content. Jillybean is also newcomer friendly with its moderate THC levels (15%-18%), making it a great strain to enjoy when trying flower for the first time. 

Answering FAQs About Myrcene

We could talk about myrcene all day, but if you’re looking to get some answers fast, we’ve rounded up some of our most frequently asked questions to help you out:

What does myrcene do?
Everyone reacts to terpenes like myrcene differently, thanks to the entourage effect on the endocannabinoid system, so it’s important to keep that in mind when you’re seeking out terpene-rich cannabis products. Research has only just started to dig into the potentially powerful effects that cannabis terpenes may have in the human body. Early research suggests that myrcene may have a sedative effect, aid in the growth of protective mucous lining in the GI tract, and inhibit tumor growth.

Does myrcene get you “higher”?
It’s a bit of a legend among cannabis enthusiasts that if you eat mango—which contains myrcene—you can 1. Increase the psychoactive effects you feel and 2. Feel the psychoactive effects longer. The problem with that legend is that there haven’t been any real studies done that prove either of those things are true. 

Here’s what we do know: Nutraceuticals published some research in 2016 that indicates myrcene may play a role in transporting cannabinoids–including THC–to the brain. There’s also some research that myrcene can increase absorption through the skin. 

The problem is there’s not a lot of research to back that up, and certainly not the detailed research required to prove that yes, myrcene carries cannabinoids and increases transdermal absorption. Until that changes, the answer to the question “Does myrcene get you ‘higher’?” is no. No, it doesn’t. 

Is myrcene an indica or sativa?
Myrcene isn’t indica or sativa. Myrcene is a terpene found in the trichomes of both indica and sativa strains (and their hybrids, too). 

Purchasing Strains with Myrcene in Them

Exploring different terpenes in your cannabis purchases can be a fun way to find new products you like. If you’re ready to purchase some strains with myrcene in them, head to your local dispensary and look for our three favorites. Chances are good you’ll find one of them, or one of our budtenders will help you find other myrcene-rich options.

Recreational cannabis is not available in all states. Cannabis is for medical use only and may only be used by certified patients in Ohio and Pennsylvania. State laws impact what dispensaries can and can’t sell to recreational customers and certified patients. Not every type of product, consumption method, dosage form, or potency mentioned on this blog will be permitted in all locations.