Many cannabis growers rush their crops to market like a teenage boy suffering from intractable premature ejaculation. The results are what you’d expect; gangly, spindly, low-trichome-count, too wet to roll, odd-smelling bullshit amateur-hour weed. Curing is critical; a bad cure can ruin an otherwise flawless crop, and a good cure can save a lesser crop. But in most cases cannabis curing is rushed due to laziness and, perhaps even more so, financial impatience. There’s just one cure for crappy cannabis curing, and that’s for growers and their financial backers to have just an ounce of fucking patience.
The rush to get marijuana crops to the market has been sustained for decades, mostly fueled by the press of ever-present cops and crooks in the game. In fact, marijuana has been persecuted for so long now that most people have not a single fucking clue how a good cure should look and smell. Curing for 2-3 weeks or less is standard even among professionals. Faster cures are common, including cures using various types of ovens, microwaves and convection systems. A 6-week cure is uncommon but in my opinion should be the minimum standard cure time for most types of cannabis and environments. But the reality is that long cure cannabis blows short cure cannabis right out of the proverbial bongwater.
First of all, Aged Cannabis is Better
Old Heads and cannabis professionals know that aged cannabis is better, but most of us keep this upper echelon of weed in our hush-hush private reserve stash box. I’m not talking about 6 week cures or even 6 month cures; I’m talking managed cures lasting 1-2 years or longer in some cases.
Long Cure or Aged Cannabis is smoother, richer, stronger, more flavorful and in many cases, the effects are longer lasting. Of course, this assumes that the cannabis wasn’t just thrown in a jar after harvest and forgotten for a year or so. No. Instead, the process must be managed. Like regular glass jar curing, jars should be allowed to breathe at regular intervals; more frequently during the first 90 days, and then less frequently each 30 to 60 days thereafter.
But long cure cannabis isn’t the norm, is it?
I cannot recall a single time in my life where aged cannabis was available for sale and marketed or sold specifically as “long cure” or “aged.” I have acquired aged cannabis on several occasions where the seller offered it for cheap as a lesser product because they mistakenly thought old weed meant bad weed. I have also been able to acquire aged cannabis from friends in “high” places, and from time to time have been able to produce some of my own long-cure weed, including once accidentally.
The norm in the cannabis industry is extremely fresh, often improperly cured weed. The greener, the better. The stickier, the better. That’s the norm. But I’ll put my 2-year cure NY Diesel against your 2-week cure of the same strain any day, and I guarantee I’ll come away the winner. My long-cure weed will be browner and less sticky, but it’ll be better in every other way than your short-cure weed.
What’s sad here is that aged cannabis isn’t in the discussion; we’re not there yet. It’d be enough if we could just get the industry to come to an acceptable minimum standard practice and timeframe. 6 weeks is ideal; at 6 weeks you have almost guaranteed a proper cure that your patients, clients, customers, friends and family will notice and appreciate. However, this assumes that the cure was properly managed.
Part of the problem is that many growers make mistakes before they even start the cure process. For instance, if the buds are not properly dried (meaning at the least that they pass the “snap test”), then the cure should not begin. Nevertheless, many growers start jarring their buds before they are dry, which means that there will be too much moisture present and the buds will be sick with the smell of ammonia, and mold will be virtually inevitable for at least some of the buds in each jar. The bottom line here is that long curing probably isn’t going to “cure” the problem where the weed wasn’t ready to cure in the first place.
Here’s what really pisses me off; these growers know better.
Most growers and producers are aware of proper curing techniques, but they are under extreme pressure to get their product to market and realize a return, so they ignore what they know is right. Quality is sacrificed for speed of profit, but what these dummies don’t consider is that the lower quality weed sells for less than the higher quality weed that was properly cured. The faster time to market is negated by the lower quality of the cannabis. It seems short-sighted to not cure the marijuana properly and bring it to market at a higher price. The higher quality will result in a happier consumer, which will in turn result in buyer loyalty and word-of-mouth power and increased, honest profits.
As always, I’m not going to bitch without offering a solution. That solution is fucking simple though; growers need to plan better and have more patience. Financial backers need to understand that this typical single-crop 90-day window from initial cash to finished grass is asinine. Gut this timeframe down to 60 days with the hasty use of autoflower crops and the situation becomes even more volatile, with a proper cure being assholishly unlikely.
In an ideal situation, we should plan the first grow out more than 5 months. This consists of 90 days to harvest, 14 to dry, 42 to cure and process. Cuttings for mothers and clone rooms can be taken along the way, and with additional space and resources crops can be staggered to yield every 60 days thereafter, or even less if you have the necessary space.
What’s important here is that we get 6 weeks to cure our cannabis. Plan that into a grow from the very beginning, and don’t let investors or anyone else rush you to market. If you always have problems with your cures, then it’s clear you don’t know your shit and you need to go back to the drawing board. It’s easy to learn about curing; from local amateur or professional advice to YouTube videos, internet tutorials, books, CD, DVD, podcasts, radio shows and more, you can find out what you need to know with just a moderate amount of research and querying.
After all, as author Donny Miller said;
In the Age of Information, ignorance is a choice.
Or, as I like to say;
If you can’t do it right, don’t fucking bother.
Have something to say about this? Let’s hear it in the comments below.