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How to Dry Weed the Right Way

Drying cannabis is an essential skill to master if you want to produce high-quality product. Free of excess moisture that renders plants more susceptible to mold and disease, drying weed results in a stronger aroma, better taste, and more potent product for consumers to rave about.

Wondering how to dry weed for the best possible results? You’ve come to the right place. Let’s explore the importance of marijuana drying, the main differences between drying and curing cannabis, and best practices for weed drying.

Preservation of cannabinoids and terpenes

Proper drying helps keep your product’s potency and flavor intact by preventing the degradation of cannabinoids and terpenes—a.k.a., the compounds primarily responsible for the plant’s aroma and potential therapeutic effects.

Prevention of mold and bacteria growth

Dry cannabis is free of excess moisture content, which means it has less risk of mold and bacteria growth.

Better smokeability

Cannabis drying results in a more even burn and smoother smoke or vapor, which enhances the overall consumption experience. It also allows the full flavor profile of the strain to emerge.

Easier handling and storage

Knowing how to dry cannabis will make handling and storage a lot easier for you, as it reduces the risk of mold during storage and ensures a longer shelf life for your final product.

A better curing process

Knowing how to properly dry marijuana means you’ll be successfully set up for a proper curing: the final step for the cannabis plant, where it’s moved into a controlled environment like mason jars and left alone to further develop its flavors and aromas.

The difference between drying and curing cannabis

A proper dry and cure go hand in hand, but they’re also two distinctive processes with their own unique benefits. 

 

While cannabis drying is how you ensure your product is easy to handle and less susceptible to disease, a proper cure is how you truly go the distance with your consumers. It works to preserve the flavor and aroma you were able to accomplish in your cannabis drying room, allowing your product to make its way to the consumer with minimal degradation in the transition.

how to dry weed
Photo credit: Mike Rosati

How to dry cannabis

If you’re looking for the best drying method, keep in mind that your approach will vary depending on your environment, your available tools, and what sort of strains you’re working with. It will also depend on when you decide to trim—a.k.a., wet trimming versus dry trimming buds.

However, here’s a general guide when it comes to pot drying your way to success.

Required tools:

  • Drying racks or lines for hanging whole plant to dry
  • Hygrometer for measuring temperature and humidity levels
  • Fan
  • AC unit (optional)
  • Dehumidifier (optional)

Steps:

  1. The first thing you’ll want to do is locate an ideal drying room to ensure your plants are properly dried when the time comes. A good drying room will be dark with temperatures between 60-70 degrees Fahrenheit and humidity between 55-65%. You’ll be able to assess all of this with your hygrometer.
  2. Once your drying room has been secured, you’re ready to begin. Start by hang drying—cutting off big branches or even hanging whole plants upside down on your rack or line. Make sure the amount of light can be easily limited and your temperature and humidity quickly controlled. 
  3. A pro tip is to keep a consistent airflow throughout the drying process, which can be achieved with an optional AC unit and/or dehumidifier.
  4. While hang drying, maintain a temperature of 60-70 degrees Fahrenheit at all times. This will help ensure your plants dry evenly and gradually. In the same vein, make sure your hygrometer keeps a close eye on humidity levels, which should live at 55-65 percent throughout the drying time. 
      • Remember: if your humidity is set too low, your buds will dry out quickly, and the flavor of your cannabis will be off. On the other hand, too-high humidity results in slowly-drying buds that are more prone to mold development.
  5. Continue drying until the plant’s stems snap instead of bending. This will typically take around two weeks, but might vary depending on your method of approach (like the 60/60 drying method, for example). If the stems have any give, they need to keep drying. Once they’re brittle and easy to break, your buds are ready to move to the curing stage. 
  6. Time to cure your cannabis, which is covered in depth here.

Tips for preventing rapid drying

Hanging plants to dry sounds simple enough, but there is a bit of nuance when it comes to knowing when your plants are ready to cure—and knowing how to prevent them from drying out too much in the process.

Stay on top of humidity and temperature levels

As we’ve mentioned, one of the easiest ways to ensure your plants dry properly is to stay dialed into their temperature and humidity levels—again, that’s 60-70 degrees Fahrenheit paired with 45-55 percent humidity.

Keep air circulating

Although optional, including proper air circulation in the drying area helps prevent pockets of stagnant air from forming, and promotes an even dry for your plants.

Avoid direct heat

Never expose your hanging-to-dry plants to direct heat sources like heaters or sunlight, as this can accelerate drying and degrade the quality of the buds.

Wet trim ahead of time

It’s up to you whether you prefer to trim wet or dry, but we recommend trimming before you hang if you’re worried about the possibility of over-drying. This will reduce the plant’s surface area, and also slows down the drying process in general.

Invest in high-quality smart equipment

If you have the budget, we recommend looking into some higher-quality equipment to streamline the hanging process and ensure it runs smoothly. For example: drying racks designed specifically for cannabis drying, which allow for proper airflow around the buds.

Adopt proper storage practices

Finally, the best way to ensure your cannabis doesn’t overdry after it’s done hanging is to package it properly.

How to store dried cannabis

Speaking of proper storage practices, you’ve come to the right place when it comes to accessing the best tips and tricks on the market. Essentially, the answer is TerpLoc: Grove Bags’ winning packaging technology for cannabis products across the vertical.

TerpLoc technology creates the perfect environment for maintaining quality and consistency in flower from packaging to purchase. It aids you throughout the curing process as well, automatically pushing out excess moisture and unwanted oxygen throughout the storage cycle. 

Going with TerpLoc means you don’t have to think too hard about storage at all—simply place the properly dried flower into the bag, seal it, and allow the magic to happen from two weeks to two months for optimal potency.

Frequently asked questions about drying cannabis

Should you trim fan leaves before drying?

Figuring out when you trim your leaves depends entirely on your personal preference. That being said, we recommend trimming before drying. This helps by removing excess plant material to ensure you achieve an even dry. 

How long to dry cannabis?

The drying process can take anywhere between three days to two weeks; it depends entirely on the strain you’re working with, your geographical location, and the conditions of your drying room. Your best bet for understanding when your weed is thoroughly dried and ready to be cured is to focus on the stems. Once they’re brittle and easily breakable, you’re ready to move. 

What’s the best humidity for cannabis?

The best humidity for cannabis to be stored in is 45-55 percent. However, keep in mind this can also vary depending on location, strain type, and environmental settings.

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