Where Does CBD Come From?

CBD stands for cannabidiol. It is the second most prevalent cannabinoid of the cannabis plant, second only to tetrahydrocannabinol (THC). CBD for human use was legalized when hemp was re-defined by the 2018 Farm Bill as legal when containing less than 0.3 percent THC. Hemp and marijuana are both varieties of the cannabis plant.

Cannabis is a genus of flowering plants in the family Cannabaceae. The number of species within the genus is disputed. Three species are recognized: Cannabis sativa, Cannabis indica, and Cannabis ruderalis.1 Cannabis is an annual, flowering herb. Its leaves are highly recognizable, thanks to their prevalence as symbols in pop culture and pro-marijuana legalization activist movements.

Cannabis leaves are compound and look like palm fronds with serrated leaflets. The first pair of leaves usually have a single leaflet, and the number gradually increases up to a usually seven or nine leaflets, depending on the variety and growing conditions. At the top of a flowering plant, this number again diminishes to a single leaflet per leaf.2

In nature, cannabis is typically pollinated by the wind, and the fruit of the plant is an achene, or a simple dry fruit. This achene is often referred to as the “seed” of the cannabis plant, but actually there is one seed inside the hard shell of the achene. These seeds appear inside the flowers of the female cannabis plant, and these flowers attract wind-bound pollen by making themselves sticky with resin.

Cannabinoids are produced in the resin made by unfertilized female flowers. Once a flower is pollinated, it stops producing this resin and begins making seeds. That’s why we only use unfertilized female flowers in Cornbread Hemp products.

These cannabinoids are found in what are called trichomes, the tiny hairs on the flowers that make it look sparkly in the light.3 These trichomes are found in the flowers of the female plant, but lower concentrations can be found in the leaves and stems of the plant.

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