Growing your own cannabis at home can be a very fun and rewarding process. Anyone who has tried this will know that it’s no easy task. Growing your own cannabis takes a lot of work and patience. From start to finish every bit of effort you put in will show in the quality of your final product. The process of cleaning the leaves from your grown bud is a very important step. This step will make your final product look as best as possible.
There are two options when it comes to trimming your buds. These are wet trimming and dry trimming. Some growers prefer one over the other or possibly a combination of the two. We will look at each method and you can decide for yourself which one will suit you best.
Trimming the bud
Growing takes months of non-stop hard work and dedication. The final step to the whole process is to trim your flowers. This is to get your cannabis to the best possible quality. There are a few reasons why trimming is a necessary step. Trimming off the leaves and branches we will make the final product look as appealing as possible. Smooth, well-trimmed buds definitely make a good impression and show that you have put all your effort into making a quality smoke.
Also, the small leaves have fewer trichomes then the flower itself. So, by keeping them we will reduce the potency and quality of the bud. The fan leaves will absorb a lot of moisture. If you smoke these you will get a very harsh and unpleasant smoke. By keeping a steady moisture level on trimmed buds, we can ensure that curing will be as good as possible. This will result in a much more flavourful smoke that is very smooth on the throat.
Some growers will prefer to trim off the fan leaves several days before harvest time. The question we must ask ourselves at this point is wet or dry trimming? It’s up to you to decide when to cut down your plants. This can be done before or after the drying process. Your decision will be based on each methods pros and cons. The type of grow as well as your growing environment will help you decide which method to choose.
Wet Cannabis Trimming
Wet trimming is the method preferred by most growers and is probably the most natural way of doing things. Growers will trim either straight after cutting down the plant or even a few days earlier while the plant is still alive. You may at some point need a magnifying glass to remove all the excess plant material still in your bud.
If you decide to trim immediately after harvesting, you will make the process much less stressful. The stems and buds are much more flexible. If you wait, the flowers are sticky and dry and have tangled and curled leaves. The buds can also be handled easier, so you can bend them to get every bit of plant matter and get a spotless end product.
After you have removed the biggest of the leaves, you will see some small tips sticking out the bud. These tiny leaves are known as sugar leaves because they are covered in trichome “frost”. Trim these to about half of their length so that you get a rounded cone shape that is smooth to the touch.
By removing all the plant matter of course will take off the weight of the final product but this is well worth it. Properly trimmed bud will result in your product being top quality in flavor and appearance. There is no need to throw away all the bits you trim off, use these to make your own extracts or hash products.
This method will be preferred by home growers with smaller crops and grow spaces. A large cannabis crop can take several days to trim by hand so commercial growers will opt for dry trimming which is much faster than wet and will make for better appearance than machine trimming.
Dry Cannabis Trimming
Dry trimming involves removing the bigger fan leaves and then hanging the harvested trees to dry upside down. The type of grow and the working environment you are in will determine which trimming method will suit you best.
By keeping the leaflets on the bud, the moisture will remain longer, and so buds will dry evenly but a little slower. This method can be slightly risky in wet climates because of the excess moisture we have to be careful of mold growing on our bud. Dry trimming is preferred by large-scale guerrilla growers simply because they don’t have the time to work in wet conditions. As soon as the crop is harvested, the product must be transported to an indoor warehouse for the bud to dry at a slower pace.
Dry trimming can take a lot longer than wet trimming, almost double the amount of time. Once the plants are dry (10-15 days), you then remove the dry and curled leaves that surround the buds. This can be done with a pair of scissors, but the process can definitely be a bit tiresome.
Large-scale growers that choose to dry trim their buds will more than likely invest in professional trimmers. These are electric machines that are specifically designed for dry trimming bud. This machine will allow growers to trim and be done in a matter of hours instead of the process taking days and sometimes weeks. The downside to one of these machines is that they are very costly and will only really suit a commercial size grow.
Can’t Decide? Why not try both!
After looking at both methods of trimming, we can see that each can be a good choice depending on the circumstances. The main difference in deciding comes down to the size of the crop. Small-scale growers will look for the cheapest method which would be wet trimming. Those who grow on a large scale with a few harvests per year can look at investing in professional equipment that is designed for dry trimming.
If you still find yourself undecided between these two methods, then a combination of the two may be just what you are looking for. You can remove most of the leaves and stems immediately after you harvest when the plants are still moist. Don’t remove everything so you can ensure ideal drying. After the buds have dried, you can then finish off the job for a clean and spotless final product before curing starts. Double trimming may seem like a lot of work, but you are sure to be rewarded when you have perfect looking buds that are potent, full of flavor and intensely stinky!