After months of work, and a successful harvest, your buds will be dry and ready for the cure. Curing buds for best taste is a slow process, so many growers skip this step. But you shouldn’t!
To get the best out of your cannabis, you should cure your buds for at least 2 weeks after drying them.
If you any question about the best ways to cure your buds, then feel free to ask for help in our cannabis growers forum
By properly curing your cannabis, you will increase the flavour, smell, and potency.
In this guide we will cover what curing is, and why it is important to bring out the best quality of your cannabis
- What is Curing
- Check Your Cannabis is Dry
- Best Containers For Curing Cannabis
- How to Cure Cannabis for Best Taste
- When to Burp Curing Jars
- How to Keep Cannabis Fresh
What is Curing, and Why you Should Cure your Cannabis
When you first harvest your plant, it will be full of water, and unusable. You will hang it upside down for a certain number of days, until it is dry.
Because the moisture in the buds will evaporate easier from the outside, the centre of the buds, will still hold moisture, especially if the buds are big.
Curing, is pretty much the process of drawing moisture in the centre of the buds out slowly. Doing this will give more time for starches, and chlorophyll to break down.
This will give you a smoother, tastier smoke.
Dry your cannabis slowly, over 10- 14 days. The longer you can keep moisture in the buds, the more of these starches can be broken down. Then, when it is properly dried, you can begin the cure to pull out the rest of the moisture slowly.
For a guide on drying cannabis after harvest, see our guide below:
It is a slow process, but for top shelf cannabis, you need to cure for at least 2 weeks. The first step to curing buds for best taste is to ensure your buds are dry before curing them!
How to Check Cannabis is Dry
After hanging your plants for around ten days, they may be dry enough to start curing. It is vital, that your make sure your cannabis is dry before putting it into airtight containers!
This is for a couple of reasons:
1: If your buds are wet, and you seal them into airtight containers, they may begin to rot, and become mouldy
2: As the moisture spreads from the inside of the buds, to the outside, it will wet the terpenes on the outside of the buds again. Getting the terpenes wet, after they have dried, will seriously affect them
Stems MUST snap off of the branches. This shows that enough moisture has left the buds, and they are ready for the cure.
This is important! Again, if the buds are not snapping, they are not ready for curing. If the terpenes of your buds get wet after they have dried, they can lose potency.
As terpenes are a big part in the flavour and smell of cannabis, this can potentially ruin your buds, and make your cannabis smell like hay, or have very little pungency.
Why Curing Buds is Important for Better Taste
When you touch your hanging buds, even after just a few days, they can feel dry. But there is a lot of moisture still built up in the middle of them. This moisture is used by the plant to break down sugars, starches, and chlorophyll built up in the plant matter.
Drying slowly, will give the plant time to break down the sugars and chlorophyll. The more time it has, the more it will break down.
Once moisture is completely removed from the buds, the plant can’t break these starches down any more.
Curing increases your drying time, and also pulls moisture out of the centre of your flowers. Keeping an even level of moisture around the whole bud, and giving you a smoother smoke.
Best Containers for Curing Cannabis
What container you use is up to you, but you must make sure it is airtight, clean, and free from any smell. This is to lock in the smell and moisture to build up humidity. Without a good air tight container, you won’t be able to cure your buds properly.
You need to be able to control how much moisture is in the air around your buds, you do not want air leaking out.
Make sure your containers are free from any smell, as this may affect the flavour of your cannabis. Stainless steel, or glass containers are best. But good results can be seen with plastic containers, as long as there is no residual smell before you start curing.
Kilner Jars for Curing Cannabis
Easy to buy at most shops and stores. Cheap and reliable. Kilner jars are used by most growers who cure their cannabis.
They have an airtight rubber seal, that can be replaced over time if they get worn down.
They are also available in many different sizes. But, they are transparent, and will let light in, which can affect the curing process.
It is better to store these jars in a dark place when curing your cannabis.
Cvaults, Designed for Curing Cannabis
Cvaults are designed specifically for curing cannabis.
They are stainless steel and airtight. They also have a section in the lid where you can hold humidity packs.
They are a little more pricey than Kilner jars, but are a good long term investment, and something you should consider buying if you cure cannabis often. Which, as a Percy Grower, you will be.
Tight Vacs are an airtight containers, that can also create a vacuum inside the jar.
These containers can be used for long term storage of cannabis, and are a great way to cure buds for best taste.
Though they can be expensive, they are a long term investment.
Using Tight Vacs will keep your cannabis fresh for long periods of time, (anything up to a year). And unlike vacuum sealed bags, they will not squash your buds.
These jars are a brand of plastic tubs, with humidity sensors built into the lids. This way, you can monitor the humidity inside the jar, without disturbing the environment.
You can also buy just lids with sensors, and also sensors on their own to place inside jars. But My Pharm jars do everything you need, and come at a decent price.
If budget is a problem, you can use anything to cure your cannabis. Ice cream tubs, popcorn buckets. You just have to be careful of smell leaching from the plastics, into the buds, as this will taint the flavour.
If there is any smell at all after cleaning the container, don’t use it.
How to Cure Cannabis for Best Taste
The idea of curing, is to get the water that is in the centre of the buds, evenly dispersed throughout the bud. This will help the buds dry evenly, and slowly.
To do this, place your dry buds into an airtight container, until it is around 2/3 full ( do not fill it all the way). If you are using jars, or other transparent containers, store them in a dark place.
For the first 2 weeks, you will need to ” burp” the jars every day to let old air out, and new air in. This will reduce the chances of mould and rot.
How to Cure Cannabis:
Place dry buds into airtight containers
Open containers for 15 minutes, every day, for 2 weeks!
How long to cure Cannabis
Curing cannabis can take anything up to 6 months. This will depend on its condition, and method of storage. The longer the cure goes on for, the better the cannabis is.
You don’t want the cannabis to dry out too much, so as it dries to a prefered level, you can burp the jars less often. As long as temperatures are at decent levels, you can store cannabis for months. As long as it is in an airtight container, at the right humidity, it will be curing. Take as long as you need.
Best Temperatures for Curing Cannabis
Curing cannabis at around 18-20°C is perfect. It is a nice level where moisture can freely move around the buds. Any lower than 15°C and you risk mould forming inside of the jars. If it is warmer than 20°c, the buds may sweat too much in the jars.
Keep your curing buds stored at around 20°C in a light proof container, or a dark place.
Best Humidity for Curing Buds for Best Taste
It is ideal to monitor the inside of the container with a humidity sensor. You can buy jars with those built into the lids, or buy them separately to place in kilner jars, or plastic containers.
Humidity should be kept at around 58-62% whilst curing. This will ensure a fresh smoke, and a long cure. You can buy humidity packs to help keep your levels optimal, but these may taint the flavour of your cannabis.
When to Burp Curing Jars
Knowing the right time to burp your jars can make a huge difference in the curing process.
It is best to use humidity sensors but if not, you can just watch the buds and check when they feel damp, or dry.
Just follow routine, and keep the containers sealed and in ideal temperatures. Be sure to check for any signs of mould every 24 hours too, especially if you’re not able to monitor humidity inside the containers.
How Long to Burp Jars When Curing
For the first two weeks of your cure, you should burp your jars or containers for fifteen minutes a day. You may need a little longer. If your cannabis feels wet after 24 hours in the sealed container, then you should leave it out, until it feels dry again.
How often to Burp Jars When Curing
When curing buds for best taste, you should burp your jars daily for the first two weeks. After that, you can extend the time in between burping to two or three times a week.
If you’re using humidity sensors, then burp the jars if the humidity exceeds 62% and seal the again when they reach 60%.
When to Stop Burping Jars
Though the time in between burping will reduce, you should never stop burping your containers, unless you’re using vacuum packed storage. You need to keep fresh air in the jars. So after the first two weeks of burping daily has passed, continue burping 2 or 3 times a week.
After a month, you will only need to burp the jars once a week, for a few minutes.
How to Keep Cannabis Fresh
To keep cannabis fresher for longer, always keep it out of direct sunlight, at room temperature. Light will degrade your THC, and if it gets too warm, mould can start up.
For longer term storage, you can use a vacuum sealed bag, and keep your cannabis in the fridge or freezer. This will press the buds a little, so they won’t look so fresh, but they will still keep their potency and flavour.
Boveda Humidity Packs
To keep cannabis at a constant level of humidity, some growers like to use Boveda Humidity Packs. These are placed inside your curing jar, ( Cvaults have a shelf in the lid for them), and the humidity will be maintained. This will keep your cannabis fresh for months.
By removing air from the environment, you can stop bacteria and mould growing, which will allow you to keep your cannabis for longer periods of time.
Vacuum pack your cannabis, and then freeze it, and you can store it for over a year, with no real change to the quality.
You can also use the Tightvac containers listed above for storing cannabis for up to six months and keeping it fresh.
Final Notes on Curing Buds for Best Taste
Curing buds for best taste might add a few more weeks to the end of your grow cycle, but it is worth it. Slowly drying out the moisture will increase the potency and flavour immensely.
It can be tempting to smoke your cannabis as soon as it is dry, but if you can hold out for just a couple more weeks, you will notice you are smoking a completely different product.
Thanks for reading! You can find more information on anything related to growing in our cannabis grow guides. All of our guides are written by experienced growers, and members of our cannabis growers forum. If you have any questions, sign up. It is free, and we are always happy to help!