Tried and True Techniques for Drying Cannabis Plants

After nurturing your high quality medical cannabis from seed to harvest, it is finally time for the drying stage. This final stage can make or break the quality of your final product.  Many otherwise fabulous harvests have been destroyed by neglectful drying, with buds succumbing to insects, toxic molds or bacteria.  Don't let this happen to you!

Below are four of the best drying techniques to ensure you get the fullest potency and greatest quality out of your valuable harvest.

Maintain healthy plants

Healthy plants are better able to resist pathogens and insects.  A plant showing suboptimal health at harvest time may already have the beginnings of disease.  Therefore, before you even begin to grow, make sure you've read up on optimal plant nutrition, fertilization, light, water, humidity, and most importantly, soil.

Hanging your buds

After you trim the branches, the next step is hanging them in a well-ventilated room.  String the plants up with twine and allow them to air dry anywhere from 3-10 days.  A slower dry will allow for a more "green" final flavor, whereas a rushed dry will result in a harsher smoke.  An oscillating fan will provide adequate air circulation, but do not blow directly on the branches.

Moisture is the enemy in the drying process, so ensure that the humidity is low to deter mold growth.  Inspect your hanging branches frequently to scout for mold.  If any is detected, remove the affected buds immediately to prevent further spread.  Aflatoxin is an incredibly dangerous mycotoxin that occurs as a byproduct of particular fungi and molds, some of which like to colonize in moist cannabis.  Mutagenic and carcinogenic, aflatoxins are definitely not something you want in your final product.

A good sign that the drying process is complete is when the branches can break.  If they only bend, this is a sign they still have more moisture to expel. 

Cannabis Drying Technology

As an alternative to hang drying, drying technology takes the guesswork out of this critical harvest stage.  A fully automated cannabis drying machine can maintain optimal heat and humidity to deliver consistent and quality product. With this level of automated control, the risk of harmful molds or insects is virtually eradicated.

Optimal plant and soil health, properly timed hang drying and humidity control and cannabis-drying technology will help your harvest reach its full potential.  Properly dried cannabis will not only store better, but will smoke and taste better as well.

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