How to cure Cannabis

How to cure Cannabis

The curing is probably the most overlooked aspect of growing weed. Amature growers mistakenly tend to think that once the yield is harvested there is nothing that can significantly improve the buds or make them worse. In reality, curing affects literally everything: taste, potency and even storage life. This article will help you to make sure that you do everything right and make the buds even better.


WHY CURING IS IMPORTANT?


Once buds have been trimmed and are done drying, curing is always the next step. During curing, the moisture from the center of the bug continues to draw towards the outside. That change greatly affects the flavor and quality of the smoke. Many terpenes, which give cannabis its unique smell and flavor, are quite sensitive and can degrade and evaporate at temperatures as low as 10°C. A slow cure at low temperatures will preserve terpenes better than a quick, hot dry.


A proper cure also allows you to store weed for long periods without worrying about mold or cannabinoid degradation. Well-cured buds can be stored in an airtight container in a cool, dark place for up to two years without significant loss of potency. Thus, curing in accordance with the best practices is essential when massive harvests are at stake.


The most vivid difference one can notice between the cured and fresh weed is the flavor. Trust me, you can do blind testing and even a person who is relatively new to smoking Cannabis would notice a positive difference. 


Curing helps finish off buds, improving their taste and smell. During curing chlorophyll continues to break down, getting rid of a vegetal taste. Without curing, weed would taste like a freshly cut lawn. This loss of chlorophyll makes buds less harsh and smoother to smoke.


ITEMS NEEDED FOR CURING


For the best result, curing should be done in a space with stable temperature and humidity. If you intended to use a wet basement or muggy storeroom, let’s drop this idea right away. Light can also degrade terpenes, so it’s ideal to be able to turn off the lights or be able to cover jars so light doesn’t leak in.


In terms of the instruments, you would need just 2 simple things to succeed:


  • Air tight jar (s)
  • Hygrometer for measuring temperature and humidity

A decent example of air-tight jar

HOW TO CURE


The process is rather straightforward, put your trimmed and dried buds into some type of air-tight container. I recommend avoiding plastic bags, because after a while weed from them starts having plastic flavor. Glass or ceramic jars would work best. 


Pack buds loosely in containers without compacting or crushing them. Seal containers and store in a cool, dry, dark place. Within a day or two you’ll notice buds get a little softer as moisture from the middle of the buds rehydrates the outer parts. If this doesn’t happen, you have likely over-dried your cannabis.



Humidity inside sealed jars should be around 55-65%. In order to have full control over this, you can buy a digital hygrometer which is available for $20 or so at any hardware store.

If the buds are too dry, you can add a humidity pack, to rehydrate the buds. Those are available in most e-commerce grow stores and are also used for preserving the quality of cigars. 

If buds are too wet, leave the lid off for half a day or a full day before resealing them. Be sure to check humidity levels every day and leave the lid off for a period of time if they still are too wet.


LET BUDS BREATH


Regardless of humidity level, during the first couple of weeks it is beneficial to open the containers once or twice a day and let the weed breath for a couple of minutes. This releases moisture and replenishes oxygen inside the container. 


If you notice a smell of ammonia after opening a container, it means the buds are not dry enough and anaerobic bacteria is consuming them. This inevitably will lead to moldy, rotten cannabis. Leave the lid off for a day and reseal tomorrow.

The result of locked up Cannabis in high humidity. The buds got infected with the mold

HOW LONG DOES THE CURING TAKE?


After two to four weeks in containers, your cannabis should be cured enough to give you a flavorful, aromatic, and quality experience. Some people prefer to cure for four to eight weeks. Consider it to be the room for experimenting. I would recommend smoking the weed from the buds once a week and monitor how the qualities are changing.

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