You’ve worked for weeks to get your cannabis through the vegetation and flowering stages. It all led up to harvest and you’re ready to enjoy the fruits of your labor, right? Wrong. When you harvest your bud, there is still work to be done. The marijuana must go through a trimming and curing process, and it’s also important that you know how to properly store your cannabis.
If you are new to this series all about the flowering stage, you can head over to the Smokey Okie’s blog and start at part 1. This series covers:
- The Difference Between the Vegetative and Flowering Stages
- When to “Flip” Your Cannabis to the Flowering Stage
- Navigating the Post-Vegetative Stretch in Cannabis Growth
- Preparing the Cannabis for Harvesting
Drying Your Cannabis
First, we hang all the branches of harvested cannabis upside down to dry them out completely. Drying your harvested buds is important because it impacts the overall quality of your plant and your smoking experience. Drying helps to conserve the properties and active components within the cannabis. In fact, THC isn’t active until it’s dried. This process can take 10-15 days.
We hang our whole cannabis plants to dry in a separate room, with no heat and no light. Heat can obviously burn buds and light can affect the trichomes by transforming THC into CBN, which would ultimately ruin the high associated with the weed. We do use dehumidifiers to remove moisture from the dry room, though we temper the pull incrementally over the court of the week. The idea is to pull the moisture out as slowly as possible to preserve the terpenes.
Shucking and Trimming
Shucking and bucking the cannabis plant consists of trimming the extra stem pieces off the bottom of the harvested branch pieces and removing all the buds from the branches and stems. In order to do this, we snip the buds off so that they can be delicately hand trimmed of any remaining leaves.
Check out a behind the scenes look below at the Smokey Okie’s crew and how they cultivate your weed by hand. Weed growing is a craft and these employees consist of both masters and students.
Curing Your Cannabis
Finally, once your buds have dried and trimmed clean of any leaves or excess vegetation, it will be time to cure the buds for consumption. Curing is a process that should be done at just the right time and is also necessary in order to maintain the highest quality from your yield and ensure smoothness when smoking. Curing helps chlorophyll and sugars within to break down and escape, leaving only what is desired behind–potency and flavor.
Most people cure their marijuana buds in glass jars. Glass really is the most ideal container because it helps to create the perfect environment for curing. The glass allows any remaining moisture from the buds to rehydrate the exterior without becoming too wet, which can cause rotting. We use C-Vault containers and our harvest manager burps them frequently in the beginning and then decreases the burping over the course of that first week after trimming.
Every day for a few weeks, you will want to open your glass jar and allow any build up of condensation to escape, allowing the buds to dry until they are at a nice moisture level, not too wet and not too brittle.
Overall, the trimming, drying and curing of cannabis helps to create a smoother smoking experience and creates a less harsh marijuana taste. The process decreases any chance of mold or bacteria build up and helps to rid the weed of any harsh characteristics that can cause coughing, etc. Finally, if you are able to complete the process successfully, you can store and keep your buds in glass jars for years. However, with Smokey Okie’s buds, we doubt they will last that long.
We hope you have enjoyed this series and learned some important new tips and tricks to help your own personal growing efforts. Be sure to visit the Smokey Okie’s blog regularly, as we update with fresh new content.