The Ultimate Guide to Harvesting Weed
It’s been several months since you set up ground and watched your seedlings sprout then turn into tall plants. The plants have blossomed as they become bigger with buds. The remaining step is only to reap your plants and get puffing. Well, it’s quite a process.
Here is all you need to know to help you go about harvesting weed.
Determining When to Harvest Weed
Weeds have various signs that show it’s the right time to harvest. While the various strains have different signals, some common ones include yellowing and curling of leaves, plum buds, and branches becoming too heavy.
Time is only a factor for the outdoor-grown weeds. Most tend to have seasonal growth patterns with harvesting between most common between September and November. For indoor-grown weeds, the best time is between 7 – 9 weeks. The duration might vary depending on the strains.
Understand your local climate and relate with other weed growers in your locality for when to harvest the weed.
Still, the most reliable means to confirm if weeds are ready for harvesting is by observing trichomes and stigma.
Trichomes are the appendages or outgrowth found on the cannabis flowers. They range in color and contain the cannabinoids that make the plant valuable. The appearance of the trichomes is the best indicator of whether the cannabis is ready for harvesting or not yet.
Trichomes are tiny and need you to have a closer look to determine the plant growth stage. A clear and translucent trichome means low THC hence too early for harvesting.
Half clear trichomes show the plant can be harvested, however, it won’t have an energetic high effect when taken. The best time to harvest is when the trichomes turn amber. Potency decreases at this period and the plant is at its best quality.
- Other factors that determine when to harvest weed
Given the various strains take different duration to mature, you need to understand the specific one you are working on growing.
While you might want to wait until peak ripeness before harvesting, the weather patterns matters. There is no big deal when you harvest cannabis from i49 during the cold temperatures, it, however, becomes tricky for frozen conditions. Plants are susceptible to frost damage forcing them to harvest.
Rains are another determinant of the time to harvest. Extended rains with storms are not the best for the plants.
Lastly, you can also use special tools to determine if your weed is ready for harvesting. Handheld pocket scope and smartphone camera magnifiers work perfectly to determine the color and condition of trichomes and other plant parts.
Preparing to Harvest Weed
Harvesting weed is not an instant activity. It’s a process that requires you to prepare and have everything in place. A week is enough to put everything in place.
The week leading to harvesting should be all about watering and flushing the plants regularly. The water gets rid of nutrient and fertilizer build up on the plants.
For large-scale growers, you need to have the time as you might have to cut a lot of plants at once. Growing the same strains also mean everything matures at the same for extensive work.
Other ways to prepare for harvesting weed include;
- Prepare lighting
Lights are important aspects for growth and not so much during harvesting. Remove or block all the lights from the plants to avoid THC level changes. For outdoor-grown weed consider dry days with less sun for harvesting.
- Gather appropriate tools
When harvesting weed you need various tools like scissors for trimming buds and pruners for managing big branches. The long harvesting period also means you need a comfortable chair and area.
The other necessary tools include rubbing alcohol, small clothes, line, and gloves. You might also need proper entertainment to keep you company through the harvesting period.
How to Harvest Weed
Now that you have ascertained the plants are ready to harvest and you have prepared the tools, it’s time to harvest. Harvesting involves trimming the plant to take the parts you need.
There are two types of trimming. The first is wet trimming where you trim the buds immediately you chop down the plan. The other option is dry trimming where you let the chopped down plants dry for some days before you trim them. The exact harvest time, thus depends on the trimming type you choose.
Whatever the trimming option you choose, when you get to the harvesting you will cut off the branches using a pair of sheers. For small plants, you cut them at the base immediately above the ground.
For dry trimming, you need a space to set up hanging points. Space should be big enough to accommodate the branches while exposing them to light.
Tips for Successful Weed Harvesting
- Timing is everything
The best harvesting time is when the plant is fully grown with the right amount of THC and other concentrations. The time must also coincide with the right weather conditions.
Harvesting your weed too early means it has not achieved the optimum concentration. It might give a high feeling when smoked, however not lasting. Late harvesting means THC production is low with degrading resin glands.
- Get the right tools
Do not skip on any harvesting tools. While it might seem like a tool plays a simple role, you won’t like it when your hands get blisters after hours laboring on the plants.
Research to find some of the best deals on the tools you need.
- Understand the process takes time
Weed harvesting is a long and tedious task. Prepare a comfortable chair you will use during the period. You will not tire when comfortable as you also save your back.
- Monitor your produce closely
Pay attention to all the harvesting aspects no matter how much it seems less impactful. Observe the plants to ensure the right time for harvesting as you also monitor the produce.
After the hard work of looking after your plants and providing nutrients, it’s only right you get the best produce. Use these tips to understand the best time to harvest weed and every other thing about the process.