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Let's examine 15 Cannabis Books to improve your cannabis knowledge.

The cyber age allows instant access to a broad range of information on nearly any topic. Brick and mortar libraries are a thing of the past when the internet provides current and accurate information with just a few clicks at the keyboard.

There’s no replacement for physical books, however, because they provide detailed and extensive data about their topics. They are undeniably handy and portable resources that allow us to dig deep into the subject matter we find the most fascinating. As wonderful as the internet is, there’s simply no replacing books.

This is particularly true when cannabis is the topic. Cannabis literature has been around for many decades, but the increasingly legal status of the plant in the past 10 years resulted in a flood of new books covering every facet of the cannabis world.

Books covering the general history of cannabis use; strain guides; soil, hydroponic, and organic cultivation; legal matters; concentrates; cannabis cookbooks; cannabis investing; and cannabis business advice are some of the topics in texts gracing bookstore shelves—and most of these topics have multiple titles, providing a range of authors from which to choose.

Selecting the best titles can be a subjective exercise when there are so many choices—particularly when it comes to books in the cannabis space, which evolves at a rapid pace. That said, the following titles are worthy of your consideration as a way to broaden your knowledge as well as for general reading pleasure.

Strain Guides

If nothing else, strain guides usually provide plenty of eye candy from the photos they contain. These books remain popular but pose challenges for their authors, largely because of the massive influx of strains hitting the market on a regular basis.

What the most notable strains guides do, however, is provide a good reference for foundation strains from which so many of today’s favorite strains were produced.

The Cannabible (Volumes 1-3) – by Jason King

The hardcover, cased, three-volume set looks awesome on any cannabis enthusiast’s coffee table. The photos are spectacular, and the information is more or less accurate. Each volume contains editorial copy about a range of cannabis-related topics. Regardless of whether you’re a fan of old strains or new, you’ll be entertained—and no doubt learn a thing or two—by flipping through the pages.

Big Book of Buds (Volumes 1-2) – by Ed Rosenthal

This comprehensive look at the world’s most notable cannabis strains accomplishes a difficult objective fairly well. Anyone who loves marijuana and enjoys discovering new strains will enjoy perusing these pages—to see how many of the strains they’ve tried, if nothing else. Like The Cannabible volumes, books of this nature are almost dated by the time they hit bookstores, but they are undeniably fun to read and provide a good crash course on various strains.

Marijuana Smoker’s Guidebook: The Easy Way to Identify and Enjoy Marijuana Strains – by Matt Mernagh

This book tackles a difficult topic and does a respectable job of delivering on its objective. The author identifies 180 of the most popular strains from various countries and presents straightforward information about them. The book is for the general cannabis consumer and not professional industry insiders. It makes a handy resource for everyday smokers who are exploring a variety of strains.

Green: A Field Guide to Marijuana by Dan Michaels, with photography – by Erik Christiansen

This is another coffee-table hardcover with awesome macro photography of trichome-laden and sticky legendary strains. A range of other basic cannabis-related information like plant anatomy and terpenes help round out the appealing strain profiles and photographs.

Cannabis Cultivation

As you might have guessed, this book category is one of the largest in the cannabis space. With this being the case, narrowing down the very best titles can be difficult. Some of these are old classic while others are relatively new to the marijuana bookshelf. Although the following collection of cannabis horticulture titles barely scratches the surface of this category, the titles are must-reads for those who are looking for reliable information about cultivation best practices.

Ed Rosenthal’s Marijuana Grower’s Handbook – by Ed Rosenthal

This updated version of the well-known author’s classic text is a must-read for anyone serious about growing good cannabis. The information presented is a balanced mix of useful advice that will guarantee the success of beginners, as well as material that advanced growers will find interesting. The Marijuana Grower's Handbook by Ed Rosenthal is the official book of Cannabis Training University.

Cultivating Exceptional Cannabis: An Expert Breeder Shares His Secrets – by DJ Short

The pioneer West-Coast breeder adds another title to his catalog of growing books, this one more comprehensive and detailed than his previous offerings. The creator of Blueberry and Grape Kush provides interesting insights and advice about creating special and truly distinctive cannabis strains. With an impressive list of strains to his credit, any cannabis grower would be wise to spend time reading this informative book.

Grow Great Marijuana: An Uncomplicated Guide to Growing the World’s Finest Cannabis – by Logan Edwards

Finally, a simplified book for a topic that can be very technical. Logan’s book provides useful advice for beginners as well as experts, all in an easy-to-understand style. This book is particularly useful to beginning indoor growers who are looking to start their first grow room.

Marijuana Garden Saver: Handbook for Healthy Plants – by J.C. Stitch, edited by Ed Rosenthal

This book will no doubt help many avoid the most common cannabis-growing pitfalls. It provides useful information about avoiding and dealing with pest, proper dosing of nutrients, and sound advice about how to grow marijuana correctly. Since many people struggle with harvesting a good crop, a good trouble-shooting text would make a valuable addition to their libraries.

Cannabis Cookbooks

The edibles segment of the cannabis industry has exploded in the age of legal cannabis. Pot brownies and cookies that were common in days past are eclipsed by some of the delicious dishes now being served with cannabis as the theme. Not only are sweet desserts and candies the focus, but a wide range of savory foods as well, as talented cannabis chefs provide delicious recipes for creating a marijuana meal anyone would be proud to serve.

Cooking with Herb – by Cedella Marley

If it wasn’t such a great cookbook, this book would be notable for the simple fact that it was written by reggae musician Bob Marley’s daughter. Her recipes embrace a holistic, green lifestyle. Many of the dishes presented are Jamaican and vegetarian delicacies that are downright delicious. Marley also includes content about growing up in Jamaica and how cannabis is an integral part of her lifestyle.

Herb: Mastering the Art of Cooking with Cannabis – by Melissa Parks and Laurie Wolf

This combined effort from two notable chefs brings a touch of gourmet elegance to the cannabis kitchen. Outstanding photographs accompany the delicious recipes for appetizers, desserts, drinks, and entrees, making this book not only useful for cooking, but visually appealing as well. Sound information about consistent dosages for infused butters and oils makes this book particularly useful.

The Cannabis Kitchen Cookbook: Feel-Good Food for Home Cooks – by Robyn Griggs Lawrence

This collection of recipes from a dozen chefs and a bartender provides excellent recipes for a range of cuisine and beverages. The book also contains a biography section for the chefs who share their mouth-watering dishes. The range of recipes presented her is bound to please any cannabis-loving foodie.

Miscellaneous Cannabis Books

The cannabis section of a well-stocked bookstore can contain titles that are somewhat unique and more difficult to classify than most. The following titles fall into this category and provide great food for thought on a range of cannabis-related topics.

Beyond Buds, Next Generation: Marijuana Concentrates and Cannabis Infusions – by Ed Rosenthal and Greg Zeman

This book’s title appropriately summing up its content. In its pages you will learn more about the most powerful form of marijuana consumption, concentrates. Explore the various types of marijuana concentrates in the form of shatter, wax, crumble, hash, hash oil, and other products that are now hot items on the inventory lists of dispensaries nationwide.

The Cannabis Manifesto: A New Paradigm for Wellness – by Steve DeAngelo

Authored by a legal cannabis pioneer who founded one of California’s most successful dispensaries, Harborside Health Center, this book digs deep into the history of cannabis use by mankind. It paints an interesting picture of the healing power as well as the controversy that surrounds it. If you're looking for an unconventional and thought-provoking read, this could be a great addition to your reading list,

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Smoke Signals: A Social History of Marijuana—Medical, Recreational, and Scientific – by Martin A. Lee

Take a walk down the long and twisted road of cannabis use in America. Lee takes a look at many facets of this controversial plant, from its early recreational use to its modern medicinal use for a range of human conditions. The social aspects of cannabis as well as its science are presented in a thoughtful and intelligent manner.

Marijuana E-Books

For electronic learning enroll at Cannabis Training University to get all your cannabis education online. Cannabis Training University has free marijuana e-books you need to get your cannabis career up and running, or to simply improve your personal cannabis knowledge and skills.

Karen Getchell, expert cannabis writer
Karen Getchell

Karen gained expertise in developing training programs and technical documentation as a Senior Editor at Cisco Systems. She began her journey in cannabis as a patient, searching for a way to heal herself. When she perfected a method for making cannabis oil, other patients began to seek her out. An early adopter of CBD medicine, she started her CBD-infused-products business in 2014. Over the last two decades, Karen has taught hundreds of patients and caregivers how to select strains, infuse oils, and extract cannabinoids.

When she isn’t teaching cannabis cooking classes, Karen works as a cannabis business consultant, writes for online cannabis publications like Cannabis Training University, Leafly, and Weedmaps, and runs a CBD-infused-product business.

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