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An Introduction to Marijuana Harvesting


Outdoor harvest season is upon us! For those growing your own cannabis the fruits of your labors are beginning to blossom and it marks the culmination of months of nurturing care. However, the success of a crop is not only determined by the quality of its grow but by the diligence of its harvest. We understand this can be a tumultuous and exciting time, full of lots of wonderment and questions. We hope you may use this overview as a resource during your cultivation. If you have any further questions please do not hesitate to drop by either of our shops. Happy harvesting!


Tools You’ll Need

  • 10x & 50x jewelers eye glass
  • Sharp, clean scissors/blades
  • Gloves
  • Thermometer
  • Thermohygrometer (humidity gauge)
  • Mason Jars
  • 62% Humidipaks (optional)


When Is the Flower Ready to Harvest?

Visual indications taken from pistil and trichome coloration will identify ripeness.

Premature flower

  • Trichomes are clear, not cloudy
  • Pistils are white


Mature Flower

  • Majority of trichomes are cloudy, some are even amber
  • Yellow, amber, gold or red pistils


Overripe / High CBN Flower

  • Almost all amber trichomes
  • Pistils have shriveled and turned brown


Night vs Day Harvest

  • Optimal harvest time is roughly 6 hours after last light
  • If working at 3 a.m. doesn’t excite you then cut down at first light
  • Waiting until full daylight will significantly reduce flavor and quality


How to Cut

  • Inspect the full plant
  • Trim off what branches look done, cutting from top to bottom
  • Prune fan leaves
  • If lower flowers need time, leave them until they reach maturation



  • Hang full branches in a dark, ventilated space (62°F w/ 50% humidity is ideal)
  • Sugar leaves should remain on the branches for the first few days. This helps develop the flavor, as well as protect the flowers from drying too quickly
  • When the small stems snap clean, the flowers are dry enough to be trimmed and jarred



  • Manicure and place flowers in airtight jars and the close lid (still in dark 62°F room)
  • Fill jars ¾ full to reduce threat of mold
  • Burp jars for at least an hour twice a day when humidity is over 70%; burp for 15-30 minutes when at 65-70% humidity
  • Occasionally, gently turn flowers to reduce flattening


When Is the Flower Done Curing?

  • 62% humidity is ideal
  • Typically, it takes about 2 weeks for a full cure
  • The nose knows – once the flower stops smelling grassy and desired aroma is reached you are done burping.


Over-Dried Your Flower?

  • Add a 62% Humidipack to add humidity back to your jars


Contributed by Bridge City budtenders Connor O’Brian and Evan Mooney

Rewards Program