How to Dry Cannabis & Cure it
Welcome everyone to this chapter of our cannabis growing guide dedicated at the best way to dry and cure you cannabis. In the last article we read about how to approach the Cannabis flowering stage week by week. If you have also read the article on how to harvest Cannabis, you will now be able to proceed to the art of drying and curing Marijuana!
What is the best moment for cut Cannabis plant
As we have seen previously, the moment of cutting our plants is crucial for the final quality of our Cannabis. If we cut too soon, our sweaty harvest will be scarce, with energizing active ingredients and essential oils in scarce quantities. On the other hand, if we cut too late, when more than 50% of the trichomes are completely oxidized, we will have a narcotic effect and a few more grams of weed.
Usually, novice growers tend to cut their cannabis plants too early. But while early cutting can be a mistake, it is often done by Outdoor, Guerrilla and commercial growers. The first two types of growers do this to prevent the bad season coming with autumn from ruining their crop. Commercial growers cut plants early in order to save time, thus starting multiple cycles of underpowered and poorly maintained crops. If you want to produce hash, you can cut late to maximize resin production and flower growth.
The best time to cut cannabis plants is when more than 90% of the trichomes are oxidized, amber or milk doesn’t matter.
Depending on personal taste, there can be 70% milk trichomes, 20% amber and 10% transparent to obtain a “High” effect. With 60% milk-colored trichomes, 30% amber and 10% transparent, both have a balanced effect. Finally, with 40% of the milk trichomes and 60% amber you will have a “Stoned” effect. Take this information as a guideline and not as a scientific fact, as each phenotype of each genetics responds to its own times and percentages of essential oils and active ingredients.
How to dry Cannabis correctly
Cannabis drying is a very delicate moment for compromising the quality of the work done so far. In fact, if you dry Cannabis badly, in addition to ruining its scents and aromas, you risk health problems when you smoke it.
The best thing you can do is therefore religiously follow the few basic steps to get the best quality Marijuana. To do this, a slow drying and controlled environmental parameters must be carried out. The humidity of the place where the plants are to be dried must never exceed 70%, the same for the temperature, with a maximum of 24 ° C.
Tips on how to dry Cannabis
Annibale’s team recommends dividing the Cannabis drying phase in two for best results. The first part can last from 3 to 6 days depending on the size of the plant, and includes the phase when the cannabis buds are at its wettest. It will be necessary to keep a lower humidity, such as 40-50%, and a temperature of 20-22 ° C.
This is because we want to reduce the risk of incurring molds at the time of drying. After the first few days, when the outermost leaves begin to be “crunchy”, the second phase will take place and the temperature can be lowered to 1s-18 ° C, increasing the relative humidity to 55-65%. Use a clip-fan, away and not direct, to move the stale air and avoid the formation of mold.
Respecting these parameters will positively influence the final quality of your flowers, giving them a slow and constant drying. This will ensure a safe amount of internal moisture to the flowers before they are vacuum-sealed. When the main branch breaks without resistance, the flowers will be ready to move on to the tanning phase (approximately 6 to 18 days).
What is Cannabis trimming
Trimming is the technique, following the cut, of cleaning the cannabis flowers from the unnecessary leaves that surround them. Unless you are growing genetics with a high flower to leaf ratio (such as Glueberry O.G., Amnesia Haze or Peyote Critical), it will be a must.
There are two types of trimming: Cannabis pre-drying and post-drying. the first involves a defoliation of the sundeck leaves and of the leaves without trichomes before drying, so as to favor the passage of air between the flowers and the speed of drying. The second wants the cleaning to be done all at once, once the plant has finished drying.
The Post-drying trimming method can help preserve plant aromas and save time overall. However, you will have to proceed with greater caution when cleaning the flowers as, once the cannabis is dry, the trichomes will be more fragile.
Cannabis Pre-drying Trimming method
As anticipated, the pre-drying trimming method takes care of a total cleaning before the cannabis itself dries. You will have to cut the sundeck leaves and the famous “sugar leaves” (the leaves covered with fragrant trichomes with which we could make extracts and hashish). You can opt to separate the secondary branches from the main stem, so as to speed up the drying process of the Cannabis by a few days.
Cannabis Post-drying Trimming method
Unlike the method just seen, this method requires the plants to remain whole and intact until the end. they must be hung upside down, on a wire or a clothesline. You can take advantage of the internodes to be able to easily pinch your plants. This technique will improve the taste, giving a slower and more homogeneous drying of the Cannabis. Personally, we prefer to use this method rather than the first when we aim for quality.
Method of Annibale
Honestly, from our experience we think this is the best technique.
The trimming phase will have to be divided in two, with the first part that will see the cutting of the sun leaves only, and of those without trichomes. In the second part, after drying, all the sugar leaves will be cut away, so as to obtain excellent hashish.
Leave the plants completely whole and hang them without leaves, take the sun and plant parts without resin. This will ensure slow drying and facilitate the subsequent harvesting of the sugar leaves.
Defoliate and trim with sharp leaves or the resin could break them!
Duration of Cannabis drying
The duration of Cannabis drying is closely linked to how you wanted to dry and cure your cannabis. If you followed the first trimming technique, it can last up to 10 days. If you followed the second or our method, you will have to wait 10 to 21 days.
What is certain is that, if we have waited months of hard observation of the cultivation parameters, resisting another 2-3 weeks we will be able to obtain the best drying quality of Cannabis.
Placing a fan far and directly towards the plants can increase the drying speed of the flowers. Be extremely careful not to place the fan too close to the flowers to not compromise the final organoleptic quality. Essential oils such as terpenes and flavenoids are in fact extremely volatile elements.
The Cure: best way for cure your Cannabis buds!
After Cannabis drying, Cannabis cure is the last key step to obtain successful cannabis worthy of the best Dutch coffeeshops! In fact, this phase will consist in increasing the characteristic aromas and active principles through a ripening of the flowers.
In fact, like fruit, even Cannabis can ripen slowly and evenly after harvest, bringing out its best qualities. It is not a mandatory step, but as you will have understood, it is worth deepening it!
This process can only begin at the end of the cannabis drying, not before. Don’t try to save a few days by vacuuming your buds or you risk developing pathogens and molds that would ruin the sugar transformation process.
Start the Cannabis cure by putting your ready-made flowers into airtight jars, i.e. those whose stem does not resist breaking. Leave the cans closed for a day, and from the next day open the cans once every 8 hours for only two minutes, then making sure to seal the crop tightly.
Continue the process for a week, and start dropping the times you open the jars from the second week. The flowers you will get after a month and a half will be the envy of all your acquaintances!
Final tips and conclusions for best way to dry and cure Cannabis
For the best Cannabis drying results, connect a fan that moves air, in the way to avoid the risk of running into mold, put it far away and direct towards the plants to favor the Marijuana drying.
Don’t try to save time by prematurely curing your buds or you risk developing pathogens and molds that would ruin the sugar transformation process.
Don’t taste your flowers too soon or you’ll just waste them!
Remove chlorophyll well with the Cannabis Cure technique to get the best out of your flowers!
Hoping to have been of help about how to dry your cannabis and cure it, we invite you to read our next article on “Cannabis Cure“.
Don’t miss it, greetings from Annibale Seedshop’s Team!
Davide, CEO, Founder and Geneticist