ne·​rol·​i·​dol | \ neˈrȯləˌdȯl, -räl-, -dōl

Nerolidol Aroma & Environment
Nerolidol primarily smells of a sweet uncured wood mulch, or what is more specifically described by the perfume industry as being like ‘fresh floral tree bark’. It is most commonly found in jasmine, ginger, tea tree, bitter orange tree, lemongrass, and lavender. Interestingly, it is the main component in the scent of the “lady of the night” orchid (Brassavola nodosa) which is known for the pungent aroma it emits after dark to attract pollinating moths. This orchid is native to Mexico and additionally parts of Central America and South America. In cannabis, it naturally acts as a fungal and bacterial deterrent.

Scientific Makeup of Nerolidol
Additionally, nerolidol has a less frequently used synonym: peruviol. It has two isomers, trans- and cis-, that are defined by which side of the central double bond the larger substituents lie in respect to one another. In trans- orientation the substituents are opposite in direction; in cis- they are on the same side (see red arrows above). It is also a sesquiterpenoid per the alcohol functional group and repeating isoprene unit. The boiling point of this terpene is rather high due to its many carbons, but the trans- isomer should boil at a lower temperature relative to cis-. This has to do with the cis- isomer not having equal charge distribution, which results in a net dipole perpendicular to the central double bond. Think of this dipole as a bar magnet that allows cis-nerolidol molecules to better ‘stick’ together, thus preventing evaporation (boil).

Effects of Nerolidol
Nerolidol, when consumed, is an antioxidant and is commonly compared to linalool per its relaxing and euphoric effects. However, more profoundly, nerolidol is being researched as a means to increase the absorption of transdermal drugs in humans. In plants, it is being researched as a way to increase the absorption of chemicals found in fertilizers and as a potential pesticide.

When choosing your cannabis strain, always ask for the terpene profile as well as the cannabinoid profile so you can better choose a strain that will have the benefits you are seeking. You can often find the terpene profiles of products on our menu.


trans-Nerolidol (CAS Number: 40716-66-3) | Cayman Chemical
Formula: C 15 H 26 O
Boiling Point: ≈528 o F (276 o C)


Nerolidol - Wikipedia
Formula: C 15 H 26 O
Boiling Point: ≈528 o F (276 o C)


Written by Paul Walter

Sources: Merriam-Webster, MDPI

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