After you have finally gathered your carefully-grown harvest of marijuana, there are two more important stages you have to complete before you can smoke your cannabis pipe. As you might have already guessed, now you have to put all your efforts into drying and curing cannabis if you want to preserve its quality and potency.
Though there is plenty of information available on the Web now, more than 50% of growers do not know the most important secrets of drying and curing weed. If you have no intention to waste your time, money, and high, take note of the following tips.
The first secret is that you should not hang the entire cannabis plant for drying. Your buds will dry faster if you separate them from the large leaves, stems, and stalks, which are additional sources of moisture.
Then you should create the right environment for your buds. If you want to achieve the best results of drying weed, try to do the following:
Of course, these are ideal conditions for drying marijuana, but try to follow them as closely as possible. With these tips, you can protect your cannabis buds from overdrying, developing mold, or from THC deterioration. Otherwise, high humidity or molds can seriously damage your harvested cannabis or even ruin it completely.
Drying cannabis buds usually takes 2-14 days in the ideal environment, depending on how much water the buds initially had, as well as their shape, size, and density. Of course, you may want to speed up the drying process, but do not use an oven, blowdryer, or microwave for your cannabis.
The buds are properly dried when they become dry but not crispy, and their stalks are not easy to bend or break. Do not overdry your buds, as you can ruin them during the next stage. Marijuana buds should still contain an adequate level of moisture for their successful curing.
Curing cannabis buds takes longer and is more complex than drying, but it allows preserving the optimum aroma, taste, and potency of marijuana. Properly cured cannabis has a smoother and more pleasant smoke. Cannabis growers cure marijuana in different ways by using plastic containers, shopping bags, shoe boxes, or glass containers.
To avoid any risk of cannabis infection or deformation, we recommend curing weed buds in Kerr wide-mouth jars in a special room with controlled ventilation and temperature. As for the relative humidity, you should measure it inside the jars. To control it properly, you can put small humidity meters inside the jars with your cannabis buds. Make sure that the meter indicates 56-65% of relative humidity, which is perfect for curing. If you notice that the RH is higher than 65%, open the jar and let the buds dry out for a while. If your RH indicator shows less than 55%, than your buds have been overdried, and you will not have the best cure.
In order to keep the humidity inside the jars at an optimum level, you should also open the jars once in five days to let marijuana buds “breathe” for a half an hour to an hour. The curing process usually lasts from one to three months depending on the buds' condition and relative humidity.
When the RH level remains stable at 55% during a month of curing, you know you have reached the end of the curing process, and your cannabis is ready for storage and consumption.
Check your buds to be completely sure: they should be tight, but not too wet or dry, full of aroma, flavor, and THC.
After curing your buds, the best way to store them is in their jars in any cool and dark place or the non-freezer part of your refrigerator. The best temperature for your marijuana is from 40ºF to 80ºF. Even when your buds are ready, they also need to breathe at least for half an hour every four months. Cannabis buds that are cured and stored properly lose 5-14% of their potency per year, while the marijuana that was badly cured or stored loses all its quality and potency within a few weeks.
Hopefully, these secrets of drying and curing weed will help you make your buds perfect and enjoy their taste and potency!