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Curing Your Buds

Discussion in 'Harvesting And Curing' started by videoman40, Mar 2, 2007.


    videoman40 Well-Known Member

    As I get closer to a harvest, I have been researching different methods of curing my bud, as I searched the net for info, I came across the subject of water curing. The following is an extract from the now defunct Overgrow site. While, I myself have never cured using this technique, I do plan on trying this out.

    Introduction - What is the water cure? Why would I want to do it?
    The water cure has only recently come to light as a widely accepted form of curing. Water curing uses osmosis to flush out the chemicals, chlorophyl, pesticides, pests, and anything else you would rather not be smoking. The water cure is also very fast (about 7 days) with optimal quality (as compared to 30 days air curing), and as well does not stink like an air cure does. Water-cured buds are also more potent than air-cured (however there is proportional weight loss to potency increase).

    THC is not water soluable, and the bud is protected from air/light, enabling potency to be maintained at it's highest levels, while the nasty chemicals are flushed out. Some growers report being able to add nutes all the way up to their harvest date because the water cure takes care of the built up chemicals.

    Because of its speed, stealth and clean taste, water cure is very inviting to most non-commercial growers. The commercial grower might not be attracted to the water cure, as the weight of the bud is diminished.
    Water cure can also be attractive to those smoking/cooking with suspect cannabis (schwag), moldy bud, pest infested bud, unflushed bud, etc.
    How will my bud taste/smoke/smell/look?

    Properly water-cured buds (submerged for 7 days and properly dried) will have a clean, thick taste when smoked, as well as being more potent than air-cured buds. This is one of the major advantages to the water cure; a quick drying process that retains potency and has a clean taste and flavor.
    Smoking reports vary, however most people agree that water curing provides a very clean, smooth taste. Those with hashier, sandlewood/piney and harsher strains will find this method enjoyable for the clean, thick flavor without the edge (like a fine whisky).

    However, those with frutier tasting strains have mixed results. They report the smoke is almost too smooth - much of the fruity/citrussy flavor removed.
    The smell of the bud is greatly diminished, which many believe is one of the positive side-effects of water curing. Some also report a diminished smell in the smoke itself.

    Water-cured buds tend to look more earthy and dark in tone. Some say the bag appeal is decreased, however proper care while water-curing can improve bag appeal.

    What do I need for this? What is the process?
    1. A container hold your bud and appropriate water (about 4 times as much water as amount of bud). A cooler with some kind of drainage works great.
    2. A dehydrator or low-impact heat device. Dehydrators work great and cost about $40 from walmart. Radiators work well (as long as it isn't too hot), and some report using hair dryers.
    3. A cool, dark place to put the water-curing container.
    You need at least 7 days to do this, any less than seven can result in undesireable quality. Even 5 days in water is not enough - you need seven!!!
    Plop in your freshy cut buds (or schwag, whatever, but fresh buds work best) into enough water to completely submerge the buds. The buds will float to the top for the first few days of this, so you need something to hold them down (a block of wood, a plate, etc). Change the water every day for 7 days, any less than seven could result in undesirable results (trust me). Try not to disturb the buds when changing the water as plant material can break off more easily (read: trichomes). Always keep the lid of the cooler open, do not seal off the container.

    The water may take on a yellowish/greenish (even brownish) tint each day, more so as the bud becomes completely saturated with the water. It will probably also stink. This is good, as it is the nasty chlorophyl and salts are exiting your plant.

    After 7 days remove the buds from the water. They will be sopping wet, and can be dried relatively quickly. You can purchase a food dehydrator from wal-mart for about $40 and consensus tells us this may be the best method for drying. Put the dehydrator on the lowest setting and dry for about 5 hours or so.

    Radiators and other low-impact heating devices can also be used. Users have reported hair dryers working with some success, as well as hanging the wet buds on a clothes line with a fan circulating air. The important thing to do is to ensure the buds dry quickly enough to not become moldy, but with as low-impact of a drying environment as possible.

    What I plant to do, as I wont be doing a massive drying here, is place them on a paper plate, and place it on my monitor, for some gentle heat to dry them out.

    7 DO'S and DON'TS of water curing
    1. Do not close the lid on the cooler. As the chlorophyll bleeds off into the water it evaporates - this is good and sealing the cooler just puts the crap back in the water.
    2. Keep out of direct sunlight. I just put the cooler in the garage and that's the end of that.
    3. Don't stir or agitate. This serves no useful purpose.
    4. Don't bother straining the water for trichomes when you change it each day. I've tried it countless times and have yet to get enough trichones to make it worth the effort, though some hairs will break loose.
    5. I've water cured as long as 9 days, but there was no real improvement over the 7 day mark - so why bother?
    6. Do use a dehydrator. They cost $35 over at Walmart and you set it on the lowest possible setting. Mine takes about 5 hours to dry out a 1/2 pound of sopping wet buds. If you line dry make sure there is a drip tray or tarp for them to drip on.
    7. DO NOT water cure seeded buds that were intentionally seeded so you can harvest seeds. Air cure these buds only...
    What is the dry-weight ratio comparison with air curing?
    Dry weight using air cure usually returns about 25% of the freshly cut bud weight. That means if you had 10 grams of freshly cut plant, you would get about 2.5 grams dry.

    Water cure, on the other hand, returns about 15% from wet to dry. In our 10 gram example, that would be about 1.5 grams.
    So why is there less weight using water, but more potency?
    THC is not water soluble. When the buds are underwater, they are protected from environmental conditions such as humidity, over exposure to air, temperature, and light. This consistent state is something not easily achieved through the traditional air cure, which can be prone to a harsher smoke with decreased potency if everything isn't just so.
    Water cure enables the removal of undesirable elements from your bud while retaining potency.

    How potency is increased through the water cure
    I should explain this so that the conspiracy theory kooks don't land on me like a ton of bricks.
    Here's the "magic" behind the increased potency you get by water curing.
    For the sake of making it simple, I'll use an example of 100 grams of bud going into the pot.
    Now, you had this bud assayed and know that 15% of it is pure THC.
    15% of 100 grams is 15 grams. So in our example the 100 grams of fresh bud has 15 grams of THC in it.
    You water cure it and dry it. Now you have only 70 grams of bud left. WTF?
    But you are deceived because the 15 grams of THC is part of the remaining 70 grams of bud. 15 divided by 70 equals 21.42%.
    The mass didn't change, just some of the things that were there - aren't there anymore, so what is left becomes a bigger proportion of the entirety.
    You go assay your water cured bud and find out it has 21.42% THC content - a 50% increase in potency.
    Not bad, eh?

    How osmosis leaches nasties, saves trichs
    In air, chlorophyll breaks down at a rate that is only slightly faster than the breakdown rate of the resin - hence the reason the pot is dried for a short time then placed in jars and burped - but always out of direct sunlight because sunlight plus air equals an ideal situation for the THC is to break down and thus a loss of potency may ensue.
    In water, the chlorophyll breaks down (out of the plant) while the THC remains suspended in the resin and is relatively unaffected by the surrounding water medium.

    videoman40 Well-Known Member

    More on chrlorophyll removal
    Water curing and air curing are doing exactly the same thing except you retain flavour and smell with air drying and with water curing you lose that flavour and smell but you have a smoothe smoke....
    The Chloryphyll in the plant leaves through either the water evaporating (air cure) or through osmosis into the water around it...Water curing is obvously more affective at removing chlorophyll because you are adding more water, and
    the smoke is smoother (chlorophyll is a big factor in bad tasting and bad burning weed)....however smell and taste come from terpenes in the plant that are also water soluble so they are lost in the water curing process....

    In air curing the chlorophyll has to leave by the evaporating water in the bud....this is less affective but you keep those smell and taste terpenes.....so why after going through the trouble to preserve and develop them through air curing would you dunk them in water and lose them?
    Its either one or the other
    Rodo48 and midgradeindasouth like this.

    pauliojr Well-Known Member

    Wow videoman. Nice find. I am still waiting to do my first harvest coming up soon so I probably won't try it just yet. I'm going to stick with what I have read 1000 times and watched like 10 times lol. Perhaps on the 2nd harvest this is what I'll do. Defintely a good find for people who want some potent ass weed. Like it said, not for the commercial grower as you will lose weight.

    videoman40 Well-Known Member

    Hey Pauliojr, I wouldnt want to cure all my weed this way either, surely not the 1st time. However, I do want to cure a little bit of it this way for several reasons,
    1-purely as an experiment to see how well it works.
    2-I can smoke the fruits of my labor in only 7 days as opposed to a month.
    3- as a purely health concern, and after seeing the ash that it produced, it has to be much better for you than traditionally cured bud.
    That's quite the picture of the ash, or so I think anyways.
    (you did see that ash, right?)
    schoolie likes this.

    pauliojr Well-Known Member

    Yea, I hear ya. Let us know how it comes out. :)

    matias2911 Well-Known Member

    That's really interesting Videoman +rep for that, It would be really exciting to hear/see your results. Also it would b real helpfull if you took the time to do a comparative analysis, between proper air dried bud and water cured off a single strain (flava, taste potency...) .Awesome find, thanks for sharing!

    leafwrapper Well-Known Member

    lots of us like the taste and smell of weed,

    castewalpha Well-Known Member

    Good post...

    vervejunkie Well-Known Member

    Great post!

    I recently had a friend water cure some of my recent harvest, with good results! I also cured some with orange peel that really tasted nice.

    Curing and properly drying your weed is so crucial. It took me a harvest to realize that it can't be underestimated. It can also be lots of fun.

    THC insolubility is a wonderful thing!

    videoman40 Well-Known Member

    Admittedly I do enjoy the flavor, however some people like myself also have weak lungs and the mild flavor is a nice touch, rather than coughing my lungs out.

    phoxhunter Active Member

    an excellent way to dry buds is stick them in water for a week....


    not a fucking chance!

    videoman40 Well-Known Member

    THC is not waster soluable. It's actually a well known practice to cure this way.

    FallenHero Guest

    Thanks for the post video.. i am most definitly going to test this on some of my next harvest.

    To those out there shooting this down without even attempting to use logic to think about it... i feel sorry for you...

    this sounds and looks very plauseable, infact im sure it will work great, i'm just worried about taste.. and of course only personals get cured this way :D seeing as how the weight drops greatly.

    videoman40 Well-Known Member

    Thanks russ0r, glad you like it!

    purplegorillas Active Member

    Excellent post on water curing as i think cleaner smoke is the way to go. However i disagree with your potentcy arguement as your logic is flawed, water curing does make the bud more potent when compared to air curing, as the THC doesnt break down in water as it would when air drying, but the potency does not actually increase when water dryed. Using your example of 100 grams of bud with 15% THC content before cured, when the buds are water cured youll have 70 grams of bud with a 15% THC content as water curing does not increase THC, but rather decreases plant mater, chemicals, chlorophyl, etc. So while you have a cleaner smoke it is actually not increasing its potency.

    bleorg Active Member

    seeing as I've got a rarely used dehydrator already, I should give this a try sometime.

    schoolie Batman

    Intriguing for sure. Never heard of this before but I think I will try this with some of my harvest in the next few weeks. Very good find!

    Godkas Well-Known Member

    Ill wait to see some testimonials before i throw my meager harvest in the drip but it sounds plausable. Though isnt the flush period satisfactory enough for great tasting buds?
    chronic luka

    chronic luka Well-Known Member

    I've never done it this way before however, i DO see the logic behind it..

    So check it out guys... someone said before that they didn't believe it would work because you're using water to dry it.. wrong, that's not what video is saying...

    You are putting your bud into the water for a week to flush out all that nasty shit that makes you cough up a lung...

    After the flushing has commenced, THEN you DRY the bud with an dehydrater from wal-mart.. whatever..

    also.. I think someone did not understand the math behind the potency..

    With 100 grams of weed initially @ 15%THC.. so with 100 grams, you have 15 grams of pure THC.. then you do your water flushing, dehydrater process.. and your left with 70 grams of weed... The THC is NOT water soluable, so the same 15% @ 100g is no longer correct since you only have 70 grams of bud left.. so take that original 15 and divide with 70.. and wal-la, you now have 21.43% of THC in your 70 grams of bud.. it makes since when you work it out..

    great post video!
    mal_crane and videoman40 like this.

    videoman40 Well-Known Member

    chronic luka, dude.....you are the shiznic! You get an A +, please come to the head of the class!
    Nah, all kidding aside, you obviously understood this perfectly. All of it too.

    This is not titled "water drying" this is curing your buds, like a fine whiskey gets cured. Doing it this way, is:
    (A) healthier
    (B) faster
    (C) more potent end product
    After you "cure" it, you'll still need to dry it, but that is only a few hours more work, and this is alot faster than a one month cure, as thats how long air drying takes!

    Again, please let me re-state, this is NOT for product to be sold, you'd loose your shirt, this is only for your personal stash.

    And everyone will have there own personal opinion when it comes to taste, my wife hates this idea, she wants to taste the pot smoke.
    for me, as I have stated I have weak lungs and could use a break on the coughing fits. lol

    Now, in all honesty, I will cure mine the more traditional way, however, I will also cure some this way too. So while I am waiting I have something to smoke. After I do it, I'll know more, and post back here for you.

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