The harvest is perhaps one of the most anticipated moments for growers who have waited between 3 and 6 months to be able to taste the incredible flowers that their marijuana plants whether feminized, autoflowering, fast blooming, regular or fast version give them. That is why in this article we are going to talk about this crucial moment and we are going to teach you all the necessary tips and tricks that you should know to produce a successful harvest.
1- Wash your plant
When growing with organic or mineral nutrients, it is recommended to flush cannabis plants 2 weeks before harvest. Washing weed plants is basically running a lot of water through their growing medium, especially in soil or coco to remove excess salt and mineral nutrients on the soil. This washing makes the plants use any amount of nutrients previously absorbed or found in the substrate.
As a result, you get buds with better flavor and aroma because an excess of fertilizer in your cannabis plants can result in buds that leave a bad taste in your mouth or generate scratching or itching in the throat when the herb is smoked. Thanks to the washing of the plant, these benefits are also achieved. There are different types of washes of cannabis plants, although the most used are only with still water or with “flush” products that you can buy in any grow store.
How to wash your plants
Before removing your plants from the grow room and putting them in an area where it is comfortable for you to carry out this process, place a container under the plant pot to catch the water that drains from the plant. Regarding the amount of water needed, use 3 times the water in relation to the size of the pot that the cannabis plant is being grown in. For example, if your pot is 2-gallon liters, wash with up to 5 gallons of still water.
It is necessary that you start little by little with 1 or 2 liters and see how the plant and its substrate react. We recommend using a funnel or something similar so that the water flows down through the soil and thus avoiding splashing and excess liquid. You can put the cannabis plants inside the shower or bathtub of your house or apartment and then place it in a large bucket, adding the water gradually to the substrate without drowning the plant.
Don’t worry if at first, the water that comes out of the bottom of the pot is dark in color because little by little it will take on a lighter color. This is common while draining the water from the bottom of the pot. When carrying out this process once or twice in your marijuana plants, most of the accumulation of will be eliminated from the soil. On the other hand, the water that runs off must be discarded.
We suggest that you do the plant washing on the day you stop fertilizing. So, it is recommended to wash the cannabis plants 2 or 3 weeks before harvest. After washing, we recommend letting the plant rest for a period of 2 – 3 weeks so that the water is absorbed from the substrate and can dry between 70% and 100%.
2- Your plant is ready to be harvested
To determine the harvest time, you can observe the evolution of the pistils in your plants. These begin as white hairs and then take the shape of buds. When the pistils are white, it means that they are very young and not yet ready to be harvested. After a few weeks, the pistils begin to turn orange and then brown or even pink (depending on the genetics you grow). This is already an indication that harvest time is approaching.
When most of the pistils are orange or brown in color and have rolled into the buds, it means that the plant is ready to be harvested. You must be careful because if you follow this pattern, sometimes this can happen due to environmental factors even when the cannabis plant is not yet ready for harvest. For example; It can happen when the plant does not have good nutrition in flowering and pistils tend to turn brown due to lack of food.
The best indicator is to look at the trichomes because it is the perfect way to know if the plant is ready. Trichomes are small resin glands that change color as they mature. Like pistils, they start out clear and transparent and a couple of weeks later, they turn milky white. When these THC glands turn milky white and some of them turn amber, that means that it is the perfect point for the plant to be harvested. If the trichomes are all amber / brown in color, it means that the plant is more than mature and ready to harvest. Be prepared that its effect will be intense and super relaxing.
Learn how to harvest your indoor cannabis plants
The way to cut the plant depends on its size. Generally, the entire plant is cut first at its base and then the branches are cut one by one. After this, the large leaves, also known as satellite leaves, are cut in the shape of a fan. Now, it is important to select the branches between the smallest and the largest. The flowers must also be selected for their size and caliber. For this, it is important that you take into account the size of the space where you are going to dry because the distribution of your harvest will depend on that. Remember that the plants, once harvested, need spaces with good ventilation that are dry and dark to prevent pests or fungi from appearing and consequently damaging the crop.
Manicuring the buds is a essential step
In the drying place, you can leave your plants for a period of 10 to 20 days for optimal drying. During this time, you will see how the buds reduce their size and also lose weight because the water that makes up the flowers evaporates with each day of drying. At this point, you can decide whether to clean the buds of your marijuana or leave the leaves with sugar trichomes for cleaning later.
Curing the cannabis buds
After cleaning the buds, where we remove the remains of leaves and any excess plant material that dirties the flower, we proceed to cure the buds. This process consists of putting the buds in sealed jars in a dry and dark place with a medium temperature. During the first 2 weeks of curing, open the jars once a day for an hour so that the buds can breathe and the humidity inside the container can escape.
Bruce Banner #3 in the process of curing.
The curing process can last between 2 and 3 months. If that time passes, you will get buds that explode their levels of CBN. For this reason, its effects will be more relaxing. In addition, an important detail is to label your jars with the genetics that you harvested and the dates of harvest and curing. With this, you have control and you know when exactly to smoke your herb.
Tricks to dry the weed
There are different ways to dry the weed after harvest. Here, we will tell you some of the best tricks of the trade.
1- Drying nets can be used which have the ability to filter air between the buds, preventing any type of fungus from appearing that damages the flowers. In addition, drying nets according to their composition have the ability to prevent the buds from sticking to them due to the abundant resin they can produce, so this is a great way to dry.
2- Some gardeners dry their buds in wooden boxes so that the herb acquires woody tones with drying. You must be careful and constantly check the box and each flower for at least 1 hour a day so that the harvest is not damaged. We do not recommend this classic method because it creates a lot of extra work.
3- In large marijuana farms, gardeners hang entire plants or their branches separately upside down with a wire or something similar. This technique is essential if your crop is commercial in nature and produces a few kilos of marijuana to dry.
Critical Daddy’s indoor harvest drying.
It is necessary to have a fan in the drying area especially if you are a commercial gardener or if you are a home grower who likes to harvest different plants simultaneously. Keep in mind that the fan should be pointed towards the buds. Without good air flow, an air extractor must be added to remove the dirty air. The drying place should also be completely dark.
In relation to the humidity, it must be maintained at about 50% and the temperature around 20º C. These are optimal conditions. In case you find mold or fungus on a drying branch or plant, separate it from the rest of the crop and remove it immediately to avoid contaminating the rest of the harvest.
Cannabis harvesting outdoors
To avoid problems with the harvest when you grow outdoors, we recommend that you take into account three fundamental points before starting the process.
If you are an inexperienced gardener, you should be clear that the climate changes from summer to autumn and therefore, humidity is relevant to take it into account when taking care of the plants. We already mentioned it in the case of indoor gardeners and outdoors, it is much more relevant. To avoid having problems associated with this, we recommend growing short flowering plants such as autoflowering genetics or fast blooming so that the humidity that increases when the season changes won’t damage your harvest.
Santa Muerte Fast Version
To avoid problems with the humidity, we recommend Santa Muerte Fast Blooming, a variety that has a fast flowering. For this reason, you will not have to endure those first rains or the increase in humidity in autumn that tends to damage crops completely with fungi like mold. Santa Muerte Fast Blooming is ready to be harvested at the end of September outdoors and delivers harvests of 500gr – 500gr/plant of buds with euphoric and energetic effects because this variety is mostly sativa.
Like growing indoors, cold temperatures outdoors can also affect your cultivation and subsequent harvest as any lower or longer temperature can spell disaster in the garden. It is good to note that frost can cause ice crystals to form in plant tissue, damaging their cells.
AK 47 Fast Version
This is another recommended variety because it will allow you to harvest without the complications of humidity and rains that tend to increase in autumn. Ak-47 Fast Version can be harvested outdoors in late September or early October and the buds have a potency of 19% – 22% THC of energetic, happy, and mental effects.
Ak-47 Fast Version gives you harvests of 500gr/plant outdoors. For this reason, its harvests are abundant and the buds release sweet flavors with floral notes and wood tones. So, this strain is perfect for lovers of sativa varieties that live in places with short summers and humid and cold autumns due to the great harvests that it provides and also for its incredible short flowering.
Now that you know the step by step of how to harvest, dry, cure, and clean your marijuana, you are ready to have a great experience and ensure that your harvest is the best of all. Do not forget that it is important to be orderly, methodical, and neat when carrying out this process in order to ensure success.