How to harvest, dry and cure marijuana buds

How to harvest marijuana buds? The harvest,  manicures, drying, curing and storage of your  marijuana are the latest effort you have to make every grower. This is why it is very important to answer this question before starting this beautiful stage.

After a long process of cultivation and a happy harvest of our cannabis plant, there are steps that are often not taken into account, but are important in obtaining quality marijuana for smoking.

On many occasions anxiety beats us and by rushing the process or trying our harvest earlier, mistakes are made that can easily be avoided.

Let’s go through each step, and see how to harvest marijuana buds correctly.

How to harvest, dry and cure marijuana buds

Before starting

The time of harvest and manicure is when the marijuana plants emit a strong smell. Remember to carry out the entire process in a ventilated place with no neighbors or near your complete indoor kit with the switched-on extractor connected to the carbon filter. In this way we do not attract the attention of unscrupulous people and we do not bother anyone. Our nose can get used to the smell, but believe us, the aroma of terpenes invades everything.

Be sure to have your scissors ready, which should ideally be of at least two types. The elongated tips help us reach and cut the leaves and petioles. The scissors fine tip are even more precise, indicated for cuts, especially useful when finer remove leaves near the buds.

How to harvest marijuana buds

This is a very happy stage, but it can be somewhat tedious and is always very delicate. It consists of removing all the leaves to leave the buds clean and ready for the drying process.

You should be careful and handle the buds as little as possible, without handling, hitting, or shaking them unnecessarily. This way we prevent them from losing trichomes, which retain the flavor and cannabinoids that we like to feel so much when smoking.

The manicure should be performed from the bottom up in the direction of growth of the plant.

When harvesting marijuana buds, separate the plant  into branches that you can easily manipulate. Each of these branches must be held from its thickest part to be manicured.

Start by cutting the thickest leaves from their origin on the stem with your long pointed scissors. This will help you expose the smallest blades which you can cut more easily with your fine tip scissors.

How many sheets to remove

When you are cutting the large leaves, there is no doubt: you must remove them all and save them for cooking or whatever you want to do with them.

But when it comes to manicuring the smaller leaves that come out of the buds, there may be more than one correct answer. These are the criteria.

The classic manicure (and the most used) consists of cutting the leaves flush with the marijuana bud. The criterion is to remove all the leaves and branches (petiole remains) that protrude from the bud.

Be careful, the small leaves that come out of the buds usually have a good concentration of trichomes, visible to the naked eye. This makes them useful for making hash, Bubble hash, or being used for cooking with more powerful results than with traditional leaf. We recommend keeping them separately.

The second type of manicure is the one known as Dutch. It consists of removing as many leaves as possible, introducing your fine-tipped scissors inside the bud, removing all the leaves from the innermost part that can be reached. With this a faster drying is achieved due to the lower amount of organic matter, and also a better presentation. Its name comes from its use in coffeeshops in the Netherlands, where it was used to get their crops quickly to the market due to express drying.

The third type of manicure is focused on preservation. It consists of removing only the large leaves, leaving the small leaves as protection of the bud against rubbing and light that degrades the trichomes.

This technique is recommended for large harvests, especially on an annual basis, which are kept for a long time and can have knocks or a lot of friction. It is important to keep in mind that this technique requires a dry environment for its conservation, since having a greater quantity of organic matter, humidity can promote the appearance of fungi and spoil our harvest. It is also not recommended in indica varieties with very tight and dense buds, which are more susceptible to the appearance of fungi.

Marijuana drying

It consists of removing 75% of the humidity that our plants bring inside. Contrary to popular belief, drying is better if it takes longer. If we rush or force this process, our marijuana will lose quality. Proper drying should be done in a cool, dry, dark environment with at least a little ventilation.

The ideal is to maintain a temperature no higher than 20  C, with a humidity close to 50%. With this we assure a drying of between 2 and 3 weeks which is the correct thing.

If by bending the branches they break, the drying is ready, if it only bends, it takes more time. Avoid waiting for the buds to become brittle, it is an indicator that you dried more than you should.

You can use drying meshes, which facilitate the process and ensure a good result. If you don’t have one, we suggest hanging the buds vertically, without crushing each other. Avoid contact at this stage.

You can take advantage of your indoor kit to dry it inside, using the extractor and a carbon filter to prevent a lot of odor from coming out. Believe us, there will be a lot of marijuana smell in that room.

Curing buds

The cure is the last stage before the marijuana is ready for consumption (if finally the last one ). It consists of removing the remaining moisture in the buds in a controlled way, managing to increase the odors and flavors of our marijuana, reducing itching when smoking.

For this we can use glass jars, where we will carefully introduce our marijuana to which we will have previously removed the branches that were left from drying.

Make sure that the buds are not crushed between them. The jars should close tightly, and you should open them for 10 minutes twice a day. Let’s say, in the morning and at night. If you only do it once a day, you leave it open for 15-20 minutes.

The cured hard to the least 2 weeks, usually it is between 3-5 weeks.

During the process we will see how the crispy twigs are soft again. This is correct, since we are looking for the moisture that was trapped inside the plant matter to be going outside. When the branches are no longer soft again, and we hear them crunch and break when folded, it means that the curing process is ready.

Yes, finally your beautiful marijuana is ready to smoke!

Keep in mind that if you extend the cure for a long time, say 8 weeks or more, THC begins to break down into a molecule called CBN, which is a cannabinoid for medicinal use. This makes your marijuana more relaxing and produces an increasingly narcotic effect, which is why it is recommended for medicinal users who are reluctant to THC, and should be avoided by those who want a more playful and “sativa” effect.

Conservation of marijuana

To preserve quality over time, we recommend storing your marijuana in glass or ceramic jars, and necessarily in a cool, dry place, away from light as it destroys THC. You can also use hermetic Tightvac- type containers, which are very effective and comfortable. The important thing is to keep temperatures cool, stable, and with an ideal humidity of around 55-60%.

Remember that in Notorious you can find all the products necessary for these important stages of our cultivation, and never forget that if you have any questions you can contact our experts who will gladly guide you and answer all your questions. Now (finally) Let’s harvest marijuana buds !

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