After your cannabis is harvested, drying and curing are the next important steps to determining flavor and quality. Compared to conventional methods like curing in a mason jar, water curing your cannabis can cure it even faster. Of course, water-curing cannabis also has some disadvantages. read on to learn about the details of this different method.
The reason why marijuana needs to be cured at all is that doing so removes any irritating substance found in marijuana flowers. Through this process, the chlorophyll and sugars that make marijuana difficult to smoke decompose, thereby improving the smoothness, flavor, and comfort of smoking the plant. Traditional curing usually takes a few weeks while water curing cannabis only takes a few days.
There is a major drawback to water curing, so let’s get that out of the way first. THC and CBD in marijuana are fat-soluble, so soaking cannabis buds in water will not lose remove cannabinoids, and water can accelerate the decomposition of chlorophyll and sugar molecules that are not conducive to smoking.
That said, marijuana also contains water-soluble compounds that may wash off (such as terpenes), so the major drawback to water curing your cannabis is that it might reduce the odor and complexities in flavor profile. If that’s not something you care about and you just want to cure your cannabis quickly, water curing is a great technique.
Pros of water curing weed
Simplicity: All you need is water (preferably reverse osmosis (RO) water), mason jars, and a little patience.
Speed: Water cures several times faster than air, so you can get the results you want quickly.
Bud Rot Rescue: Cannabis with bud rot cannot be air-cured, but water-cured can potentially make them usable. Be sure to do your research into bud rot before you smoke any buds that have gone rotten.
Cons of water curing weed
Worse flavor profile: The water washes out the terpenes from cannabis, leaving you with a very mild smell. The potential upside to this is that it is a more discrete way to smoke.
Not great for sales: Water-cured cannabis is difficult to sell commercially due to lack of flavors—generally, water-cured cannabis just isn’t popular commercially.
So, how do I water cure cannabis?
The first step, the pre-step if you will, is to prepare all your equipment: a mason jar, RO water, and mature cannabis flowers.
Step 1: After harvest, trim your buds but don’t let them dry out. Remove any stems and fan leaves—save those for butter.
Step 2: Fill the mason jar with clean water and submerge the buds. Ensure that all the buds are well exposed to the water, and if the buds are too light and float you’ll want to try to weigh them down. Seal the jar and make sure that it is airtight. Maintain water temperature between 65-75 degrees Fahrenheit.
Step 3: Shake the jar a little and change the water once a day. You need to change the water because curing occurs when cannabis is exposed to clean water. As well, the water will be full of the irritating substances that seep out of the buds so you’ll need to refresh the water on a regular basis. After doing this for 5-7 days, you will notice that the water is clear. When there are almost no impurities in the water, your cure is complete.
Step 4: Hang the cured cannabis to dry to remove the excess moisture.
There is also a “Rapid-Fire Method” that you can do in a day. Place the cannabis flower in a large flat bowl and pour running water over it gently. Do this for about 10 hours and the cannabis is cured. It is not the best technique—you’ll lose a lot of flavor and will potentially damage your buds but it is indeed possible.
Should I use water to cure my weed?
Who should be doing this technique? Like the pros and cons we mentioned earlier, if you like a smooth mouth feel that has little odor using water to cure cannabis might be a decent choice to try out. Or, if you’re in a hurry to cure your cannabis, water curing is a quick way to get it done. We don’t normally go for this method, but we do know it is possible so we thought we would share. We know it is a controversial one and we would suggest that you only go this route if you have a specific set of goals you’re trying to achieve.
Every step, from seed to harvest, contains small pieces of knowledge and hidden opportunities to change your grow. Sometimes they work, sometimes they don’t, but it is nonetheless fascinating to see all the opportunities there are when you grow to try new techniques and explore new options. If you want to know more about cannabis cultivation, subscribe to our newsletter and learn more!
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