All You Need to Now About Harvesting Cannabis

Harvesting your cannabis plant is one of the most exciting times for a grower. All your hard work and dedication areabout to pay off. Are you excited yet? Well,get excited. But just because we can see the finish line, doesn’t mean that we can slip up at the end. Remember that harvesttime is a time when things can go wrong.


Things That Can Go Wrong When You Harvest Your Cannabis Plant

Harvesting your crop is a delicate operation. It requires some skills and preparation. It also requires a good sense of timing. If you harvest too early or too late, you can cause harm to your plant which can affect the results of your grow. In the last phase of the life cycle of your plant, a lot can still go wrong, so pay attention!

Harvesting Too Early

Harvesting your weed early can stunt the growth and effects of your flower tops.You want your buds to develop fully. You want them to produce as much of chemicals and compounds as possible tofully appreciate the beauty of the plant you are growing. There are times when you can harvest early. For instance, if mold is threatening your plant,you can harvest it to save the plant. Another reason is that you may have a pest infestation. However, the younger plants are very low in cannabinoids. They have not fully developed and will not produce a superior product. It is best to harvest the plant at the appropriate time.


Harvesting Too Late

But what happens if you harvest too late? When you harvest late, you reduce the amount of THC and other chemicals present in the buds. This will also 

impact the effectof thefinal product. Waiting too long for harvest will also affect the terpenes. If you wait too long you will begin to lose terpenes and other chemicals present in the plant. You will begin to lose flavor and aroma from your plantif you wait too long to harvest. Sometimes you may want to wait longer to harvest your buds toincrease the CBD content. This will be dependent on whether or not you want to have a high THC level product or a high CBD product. Even though it can be advantageous for the CBD levels, waiting too long will ruin any crop. So how do you know when to harvest? Read on to find out.

The Trichomes


The most reliable method of determining harvest is to look at the trichomes to determine their color. Look very closely at the trichomes. You can use a magnifying glass to do this, but a microscope will be better. You want to examine the small glands located at top of the small hairs on the tops of the flowers of your plant. 

The trichomes contain resin and this allows you to determine the correct time to harvest. Using your magnifying glass, or microscope, you will want to note the color of the trichomes. You are looking for the trichomes to be clear with a little bit of an amber color in them. This is the time to harvest. If you wait until there is more amber than clearness to the trichomes then it will be overripe. 

A more basic way to see if it is harvest time is when the pistils curl in towards the bud. This is a way to get a general idea of harvest time. However, you will not get accurate results this way. The plant could be a bit overdeveloped or underdeveloped.

How to Harvest Cannabis

Prepare Your Space

You will need to prepare some space ahead of time for harvesting. You will need to have an area that can accommodate your harvest and allow for the buds to dry. If you only have one plant, you will not need that much space. If you have an entire field of plants, you will need to make sure to make preparations well ahead of time. 

You may want to seal off a room and vent it with a carbon filter, depending upon the sensitivity of your neighbors to the odor of marijuana. It can be very strong and we all want to be good neighbors. Also, no one needs to know your business. 

The room should be no warmer than 70 degrees F (21 degrees C). This will stop the oils from going bad and also help to reduce the odors that will be given off by your cannabis plants. 

What You Will Need


You will need to gather together some equipment when it is time to Harvest. 

You will need the following:

  • Trimmers – You will need to cut branches and stems and you want to have the appropriate tools to do this. You can use whatever you need to get the job done from hand-held scissors to electric trimmers. 
  • Trim Trays – Use these to collect leaves and buds. These can also catch excess material that falls from your plant. 
  • Rubbing Alcohol – Use this to disinfect anything that you use to cut or contact your cannabis. You do not want anything to ruin your buds this close to them being ready to enjoy. 
  • Gloves – Gloves will keep your hands clean and free of sap. They will also keep anything on your hands there – instead of on your buds. 
  • Line – you will need something to hang your plants from to dry. It doesn’t matter what the material is as long as it can support your harvest. Also, make sure it is clean. 
  • * I have stressed cleanliness here because it is important. You do not want anything to contaminate your harvest. This is especially true after all the time and effort you have put into it. 

How to Harvest


It’s time to harvest. You have everything ready. So, what do you do now? Follow the steps below for a successful harvest. Please read through all the steps before you start. We want to make sure you do everything right and don’t lose your harvest. 

  • 1. Cut the Plant – Cut the plant down to manageable sizes. If the plant is small enough, cut it at its base. If the plant is bigger, cut off larger sections of branches. You will continue to trim this down. You will want to trim out any large fan leaves. This is especially true if they are showing signs of infestation, mold, or mildew. 


  • 2. Continue to Cut – If you cut the plant at the base trim the branches off into more manageable branches. 
  • 3. Divide the Branches – Keep dividing the branches you have into smaller, more easily handled branches. At the end of this step, you will want to have everything trimmed down to the point where you have small twigs and even just buds. 
  • 4. Set Up Your Lines for Drying – In the space you have set aside for drying, run your lines. Make sure they are set up and ready to go before you collect your buds and branches.
  • 5. Dry Your Cannabis – Make sure your dry area is dark and your fan is running. Use your exhaust fan and charcoal filter. Hang the branches and buds from the lines securely. If you have a fan in the room to move air, this will help. Remember to keep the temperature at or below 70 degrees F (21 degrees C). Drying can take anywhere from 10-14 days. 
  • 6. If You Dry on a Rack – You can choose to dry on flat racks instead of hanging from lines. You will need special racks with screens on the bottom so air can pass through freely. The racks can be stacked with space between them. Make sure to “flip” your buds now and then and rotate the position of the racks. This will help the buds keep their shape and the drying to happen uniformly. You will get a consistent product this way. 
  • 7. Trimming (Again) – Once the buds are dried out you can trim off any sugar leaves. These can be used for a variety of cannabis oils or butter, etc

Curing Your Cannabis


  • 1. Cure Your Cannabis in Jars – Once you have harvested your Cannabis, make sure you have enough jars to store them in. The jars should have a lid that seals tightly. Every day, you should open the jar twice a day. Keep the jar open for about a half-hour each time.  This is done during the first two weeks of curing. 
  • 2. Seal Off Your Jars – Once the two weeks are up, seal off the jars for another week. Check on them daily to make sure that they are ready to be consumed. This can take up to a month or two if they are very wet with humidity. Look for mold etc. If you dried your cannabis properly, you should be ready to smoke sometime during the 3rd week of curing. 

Things That Can Go Wrong When You Harvest Your Cannabis Plant


Harvesting your crop is a delicate operation. It requires some skills and preparation. It also requires a good sense of timing. If you harvest too early or too late, you can cause harm to your plant which can affect the results of your grow. In the last phase of the life cycle of your plant, a lot can still go wrong, so pay attention!


Harvesting Too Early


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