How To Trim Weed Guide

Trimming the Buds

After a seemingly unending wait, your weed buds are ready for harvest. It’s now time to trim off the delicate flowers. Your trimmed weeds may look better after giving each bud a manicure or a beard shave. The next time you come across those good-looking bud images on the internet or in magazines, those are a product of a thorough trimming – they weren’t produced that way.

With that said, weed trimming can be pretty hectic. However, all the sweat and hard work are worth it if you perform correctly. This article covers everything you need to know about trimming – definition, types, cutting tools, tips for best practices, and a detailed bud trimming guide.

how to trim weed

What is Bud Trimming?

As the name connotes, bud trimming simply means pruning buds, popularly called buds manicure.

The process involves the removal of excess physical sections hanging around your buds. 

The trimming process greatly scares many cannabis growers – particularly newbies. While many question the importance of bud-trimming, experts understand the crucial role of trimming in quality productions.

Why is Trimming Important?

Bud-trimming is highly recommended. Here are the main reasons why trimming is Important:

Smoother product

Untrimmed buds usually distort the taste of your final product when smoked. Contrarily, trimmed buds are a delight to smokers or users.

Physical appeal

Top-quality cannabis buds displayed in dispensaries and magazines are pretty attractive. Well-manicured cannabis buds have a desirable appeal. Every grower wants to improve their cannabis appearance, and you don’t want to remain at the bottom of the competition.

Trichome Concentration

Trichomes concentration is more on the bud than on the surrounding leaves. Trichomes are tiny whitish crystals that contain hundreds of compounds known as cannabinoids.

The component accounts for the uniqueness, potency, and effectiveness of the cannabis plant. When trimmed, the energy-sucking leaves allow the buds to reach their full potential.

Store and Collect Your Trimmings

Although trimming is the industry’s best practice, the trimmed leaves don’t go to waste. The offcuts are still valuable.

Most strains have sugar leaves covered with trichomes, which stick to the buds.

The trichome-packed leaves can ruin your toking experience. Removing them will be better, but they are still useful.

You can use the trimmed-off plant to make some cannabis-related products like teas, hash, tinctures, butter, and edibles; And depending on the size of the trimmed harvest, you can earn extra bucks with the excess leaves.

Choosing Between Wet and Dry Trimming

Most growers, particularly those just starting, need help with the difference between wet and dry trimming and which they should use.

It’s no rocket science; Wet trimming refers to a situation where growers trim buds immediately after harvest – before they get dried. Dry trimming, on the other hand, connotes cutting done after drying.

Although preference differs across users, here’s our recommendation:

  • For new growers who work solo, wet trimming is the most recommended.
  • If you use a trimming machine for a large harvest, you might need a wet trim.
  • In some cases, you’re going to be left with no alternatives. But if you have options, you may want to prefer dry trim.
bud trimming tools

Bud Trimming Tools

Large pruning Shears: They are used to cut through sturdy branches and stalks of cannabis plants.

Trimming Scissors: These are small sharp snips used to cut buds and leaves around them. 

Gloves: Although not a necessity, gloves may help improve sanitary concerns while dealing with your buds, preventing your hands from adhesive resins.

Rubbing alcohol: This will come handy to help sanitize resins from your tools and hand. 

Containers: Bowls and trays are some containers you need while trimming. You may need dedicated space, one for the cutoff trimmings, another for final trimmed buds, and one for the branches.

Wet Trimming Guide

Here’s a quick but detailed look at how to wet-trim your cannabis harvest.

  1. Cut bud branches in small sizes.

Divide the thicker branches with a bigger shear. For secure handling, ensure the branches that connect to the buds are neither too long nor too short. Put them in a container and transfer to your trimming room. Laying your buds down in their wet condition may flatten them out. Many growers hang the buds from a line, like wet clothes.

  1. Cut off the fan leaves.

It is also advisable to get rid of large fan leaves, called water leaves. These large leaves are usually sugarless and bright green.

  1. Monitor the small leaves.

Now you want to trim off the sugar leaves – the tiniest leaves in the bud. A trimming decision is yours to make here. Some growers will instead leave trichomes covered leaves than trim them.

You may have to remove all the leaves. However, thoroughly cut in different containers to gather the trichome-packed sugar leaves, which may come handy in the production of other items.

  1. Drying.

Here, the buds must have been well-trimmed and with the desired appeal. Whether to remove the buds’ stems and hang them down on a drying rack, it’s all up to you.

  1. Curing.

Airtight jars – just like glass mason jars are ideal for curing buds. When dried, place buds in your jars and cure.

Learn more: Curing the Weed Guide

Dry Trimming Guide

  1. Cut bud branches in smaller sizes. 

As with wet trimming, begin by cutting through big branches with large shears. Ensure the bud branches are neither too long nor too short for secure handling. Carefully, put them in a container and transfer to your trimming room/area for the final trimming.

  1. Cut off fan leaves.

Remove those large fan leaves – also called water leaves. These are large green leaves without sugar.

  1. Allow drying.

Allow your buds to dry until they begin to snap. When you achieve the crisp and audible snap, then your buds are dry enough and set for trimming.

  1. Carefully manicure small leaves

Now onto ‘sugar leaves,’ these tiny leaves sticking out of your buds are ready for trimming. You’d be careful cutting them to avoid a low-quality final product. Additionally, a good manicure improves the visual appeal of your buds. When pruning, use different containers to gather trimmings; this may come handy in the production of other goods.

Being the round-up step in your trimming phase, you may spend some time until you get the desired look you’re attaining. You should be able to replicate the typical look of those cannabis buds displayed on the shelf of cannabis dispensaries.

  1. Curing Marijuana

To cure, place your trimmed buds in an airtight jar.

Wrap Up

We believe you’ve learned all the techniques and methods you should know about trimming your buds. Do have this guide handy after your next harvest. Whether wet trimming or dry, the difference lies in the timing. 

Many growers cringe at the idea of trimming. Perhaps, these are newbies who do not understand the efficacy of ‘mere’ trimming. 

Thankfully, the above information should make the process less dreaded but rather fun-filled. 

All the hard work, time, and intricate methods you’ve used will ultimately be worth it.

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