Drying & Curing

how to dry your cannabis plant

During the drying phase, you will want to make sure you do everything right, in order to get a great tasting bud. Not drying for long enough means the chlorophyll content would not have enough time to change into glucose, leaving a bitter taste. You also need to allow time to activate the THC of your buds. Drying your buds properly will give them the best taste and can even increase potency. It can also reduce the harsher effects from smoking it, such as anxiety, paranoia, and headaches. For this reason, it is important to dry slowly and monitor your buds throughout.

Start by clipping of the branches of your plant (use a strong pair of scissors or secateurs) and cut off any large fan leaves around the plant (just the larger leaves) and be careful not to cut away any trichomes. Hang them from wires, upside down. This makes the plant believe it is still alive. Use a cool and dark room for this, which will help stop the photosynthesis process. Around 18 degrees Celsius is a good temperature for your room, at about 45-55% humidity. Let the buds dry out naturally (around 4 to 10 days), without any extra heaters or fans to speed things up.

Any leaves left over will slowly start to curl their way around into the bud. Be sure to keep checking for any signs of mould during the drying process. The buds should be completely dry after around 2 weeks. Check that the buds are not too dry, they should still be sticky, with a sweet smell.

Buds that are dried too quickly will end up tasting quite bitter. Do make sure your buds are dried out slowly and keeping the humidity high can also help to create a bud that is not too dry. Ensure the plants are at a good distance from each other so they can dry better.

To check if your buds are dry, take a branch and try to bend it. If it snaps off easily, then the bud is ready to cure. The bud should also feel quite crispy on the outside, however if it crunches into a dust it is too dry. 

-Drying_Cannabis_Buds
Drying Cannabis (CC BY-SA 3.0)

curing your cannabis buds

After drying out your cannabis buds, curing is when you store the buds in containers to allow the taste and flavours to mature, as well as preserving the buds to be used over a period of time. Curing can affect the quality of smoke, increase flavours, and give a smoother feel. Buds that are stored in a cool and dark place, in an airtight container can even last for a couple of years, whilst still keeping much of the flavour.

To start curing, you will want to trim your buds from the branches and put into an airtight container or jar (plastic, wood and ceramic containers are fine but avoid plastic bags as this can affect the oxygen levels). Put the buds into the container, being careful not to compact them down. Allow the container to be full to around ¾ to give space for a little air. Place the airtight contains in a dark, dry, and cool spot (a kitchen cupboard will do).

The buds should then become softer, as moisture from inside will rehydrate the buds, so they loose that crunchy feeling. If the buds are still dry, it means they have been dried too quickly. Throughout the first week, open the container several times a day to allow fresh oxygen in. After week one, this can be done every few days. Always check each bud for signs of mould and remove any straight away as not to infect the others. 

marijuana buds in glass jar
cannabis buds on white plate