If you’re a new grower your probably have some questions about the best way to cure marijuana. What’s the best way to cure weed? How long does it take to cure marijuana correctly? How can curing weed increase potency and bud quality? How quickly you can smoke your recent harvest?
Part of the answer to the question of how long does curing take is how smooth you want your buds to be. Sure, you could rip into your biggest cola the day it finishes drying. But it will be harsh. And won’t taste as good as you’d expect. You may get a headache. You’ll be wasting your best bud. Proper curing will take your grow to the next level.
How to cure marijuana: the basics
The best humidity level to cure marijuana is around 60-65%. Learn more about humidity levels and curing marijuana. It’s important to harvest your marijuana at peak potency, trim it correctly, and dry it properly. This prepares the bud for proper curing.
Even though the outside of your buds may feel dry, there likely is moisture remaining in the middle that will get pulled out slowly. The purpose of curing is to keep the proper humidity level so that this drying is controlled precisely.
Starting the curing process
To begin curing, freshly dried bud is placed gently into glass mason jars. Fill jars about 3/4 full. Leave a few inches of room for air so that the buds can breathe a bit.
Don’t skimp and get cheap jars, mason jars keep a tight seal and aren’t all that expensive. Use quart or half gallon jars. If you want to cure and store your buds all in one container, consider one of the stainless steel options.
You’ll notice that your plants shrunk considerably during the drying process. Be careful not to handle your buds roughly, as the trichomes may get knocked loose and then potency and crystally appearance will suffer.
Use a hygrometer to ensure correct humidity levels
It is strongly recommended that you get a cheap hygrometer to measure relative humidity. You may want a few to monitor multiple jars at once. You already have invested a lot of money and time into your grow. Curing is one of the biggest factors in producing absolutely killer buds. At this point spending $5-$10 bucks on a hygrometer is a no-brainer purchase.
Your goal is 60-65% humidity levels throughout the entire cure. Open the jars at least once a day for two weeks to let them breathe. It’s best to check a few times daily the first few days, especially if you suspect your buds are too damp.
Gently shake the buds around and inspect them. Do they stick together? They’re too damp. Leave the cover off a few hours to let them dry a bit, shake gently, and reseal.
Touch the buds. Are they damp? Leave the cover off-never reseal damp buds as mold may develop. Disaster. If the buds feel wet, then you should take them out of the jar completely so they can all dry. Place them on a piece of cardboard until they dry. This could be as long as overnight. Once dry, resume curing. And next time plan to dry your plants further before starting the cure.
How long does it take to cure marijuana?
The minimum recommended cure time for marijuana: 2 weeks
You should cure your marijuana for a minimum of two weeks before smoking. That will give enough time for the chemical compounds in the flowers to break down. Smell will be improved, as will taste.
However, two weeks is the minimum. The longer the cure, the more the flavors and terpine profiles develop. Try to cure as long as you can stand.
Ideal cure time for marijuana: 2 months
It can be hard waiting, no doubt, when you’re staring into a jar of fat nuggets it can be hard to wait it out.
Go ahead, pull out a few nugs and go to town. The best way to appreciate the value of a good cure is to sample along the way to see how the bud quality develops. You’ll be amazed at how the buds change in smell, flavor, and smoothness of the smoke by the second month.
Curing marijuana for maximum potency and quality is what separates good buds from great buds. Ever wonder why buds from a dispensary are so good? They’ve mastered the art of curing marijuana.
Common problems with curing marijuana
Marijuana is too moist
If your marijuana is too moist, you can lower the humidity level by opening your jar and leaving the lid off for a few hours. Do this if your hygrometer shows readings of 70%.
Really damp marijuana should be removed from the jar and dried for a while on cardboard with the buds not touching each other. Don’t ignore the warning signs. If buds feel damp, wet, or stick together when you gently shake the jar then you have too much moisture in there.
Wet marijuana, with readings of 75% humidity or more, must be addressed immediately to stave off mold formation. Don’t let mold ruin your crop. Get the buds away from each other and dry them out before returning to the jar. Keep checking these buds every few hours until you’re sure that they’re back in the right moisture range.
Marijuana is too dry
If your marijuana is too dry, your can solve the problem by rehydrating it. Boveda humidity packs come in multiple humidity levels.
Boveda 62% humidipacks are perfect for restoring humidity to dry, crumbly buds. The humidity packs will bring much needed moisture, but they can’t replace lost terpines or flavor compounds. At least the buds won’t burn too quickly and scorch your throat.
Once you’ve re-humidified your buds to the range of 60-65%, remove the packs. Don’t use the packs unless you really need to, as using them too early will negatively affect the way your bud tastes and smells.
On multiple grows we’ve used Boveda 62% humidipacks in some jars and not in others, and those buds in the jars with Boveda packs lacked the piney taste and smell of the buds in the jars that didn’t use them. Too much moisture is bad for taste and smell.
Long term curing/storage of marijuana
Marijuana can be stored long term if you keep it in a sealed container. Avoid excessive heat or cold to prevent denigration of THC. Bud will definitely lose some of its vibrant green color the longer you store it. Terpines profiles will become less noticeable. But if you keep it at a reasonable humidity level it will still smoke nicely, and will still get you fried.
Boveda 62% humidity packs can help refresh overly crispy buds that have been stored too long. Too dry bud will burn quickly and harshly.
Weed stored longer than a year is an anomaly I’ve never encountered. The lifespan of a jar of weed is much shorter in my experience. So I can’t relay anything of value here.
In the state where I live people are allowed to give up to one ounce of weed away to another adult. If you have a year’s worth of weed and can’t smoke it all then please just give it to someone you know who smokes. Share the love rather than letting your crop slowly dry out and die an unappreciated death.
Curing marijuana properly brings out the full potential of your buds. Curing improves appearance, taste, smell, smoothness of smoke, and how cleanly it burns. Cure for at least two weeks, preferably a month or two. Open jar daily and correct issues with moisture before mold can form. Use a hygrometer to keep curing marijuana in the 60-65% humidity range.
Following these steps will show you how to cure marijuana for maximum potency and quality.