Zeus's Take on Harvesting

SpruceZeus

Well-Known Member
Okay, I've posted this a couple times, but I though it deserved its own thread.


Is it ready yet?: SpruceZeus's take on marijuana ripeness.
This is by no means meant to be the definitive guide to knowing when to chop your plant, only my views on the subject.

I'm personally of the opinion that 90% of the growers on this site (And probably in general) harvest too early. By letting the plants go a little longer you're ensuring that the've plumped as much as they're going to.
Despite popular opinion to the contrary(and don't fool yourself, the jury is still out on this one) Recent studies have shown ;contrary to what was previously believed, that THC itself (And its predecessor THC-A) are quite guilty of causing the confusion and drowsiness associated with burnout and other cannabinoids (our friend CBN, and a handful of others) to be the catalyst (along with THC) to being 'high' rather than 'baked'
Regardless, whether or not theres any substance to the aforementioned study, its easy to get the high you want.
If you want a soaring 'cerebral' high: Get yourself a tropical sativa that contains a high level of THC-V and grow it until it is ripe.
If you want the narcotic couchlock stone, grow a rugged indica until its ripe.
Notice a pattern of growing it until its ripe? Its a really good rule to live by.
OF course we have to remember that there is more to a good high than just THC. At last count there are at least 66 cannabinoids, and we don't know what most of them do.


Now alot of people will tell you that you should harvest based on the colour of your trichomes. But (again, in my opinion) that is far too simplistic and there are too many variables to make that an effective strategy. I've made that point a million times before and i'm not going to re-hash it here,(maybe just a bit) but rest assured there is more to the picture than just trich colour.


A ripe marijuana plant will be filled in, will have an amber tinge to the buds. The pistils should have browned (or orange-d) off and receded into the buds. The seed bracts should be swollen and the trichomes should be sticking straight out with bulbous ends. Also, because you're coming close to the end of plant's life cycle, the leaves should have yellowed off and started to die.


one of my plants, 3 days before chop-chop.


Another very important (imho) reason to let your plants mature is Terpenoid production. Terpenes are responsible for alot of the complex (And enjoyable) flavours that cannabis produces. Some of the most intense flavours are produced on the "downslope" of cannabis's life cycle. My personal experience with this first came when i was growing GH cheese. One of the plants i harvested at 8 weeks and it tasted pretty nice and had pretty dense buds. The other i grew until about 9 1/2 weeks and it had most amazing, sour, skunky, delicious taste with rock hard buds.


Here is my interpretation (and maybe exaggeration) of a scenario i see all too often...

Quote:noob mcboob
I'm a new grower and i've been reading all this great information about when its time to harvest. Theres pictures and everything!!!


Look at my trichs, they look nice and milky with a touch of amber just like the ones in the picture that says its harvest time now!!!


So i just have one question....









Does this look ready to you?
That plant is 4 weeks into 12/12. Granted not all of the trichomes are that far along. And most people arent going to harvest weed that looks like this. But my point with this is that you have to look at the big picture. Stop being so scientific and start being practical.
I'm not anti knowledge, i just cant stand these "rules" that more often than not lead people down the wrong path.
Lets cut through the bullshit and spread good information in a way that is not so absolute. Or at very least explain the growth stages of cannabis making sure to mention that the pistils should have receded back into the bud before you chop. Regardless of trichome colour.

If I could offer one piece of advice on picking the right time to harvest, it's all about watching the pistils. Not so much the colour, but the movement. They should have receded into the bud and the seed bracts should be swollen.

It should look less like this

And more like this.


Trust me when I say, it is worth the excruciating wait.
 

ttumaddawg

Well-Known Member
i'm guessing your take is based on personal experience??

i agree with the pistils receding into the bud...i seem to wait for this as well.
 

SpruceZeus

Well-Known Member
i'm guessing your take is based on personal experience??

i agree with the pistils receding into the bud...i seem to wait for this as well.
It is based on personal experience, and research!!!
I'm just really tired of the only answer to "is it done?" being "get a scope" There is so much more than just the colour of the resin gland heads to take into consideration.
 

Tyrannabudz

Well-Known Member
Thank you very much. I am getting close to harvest or thought I was due to the amount of time my plants have been growing. That is until you cleared it all up for me. I have one plant in particular, big fat cola but little trichomes. If I am hearing you right in due time she will explode with resin glands.:weed:
 

tnrtinr

Well-Known Member
That first picture is sexy!!!

Great post! I see a lot of people harvest prematurely on this site. Everyone is afraid of hermis and THC degradation or they want a pure indica to act like a sativa.
 

Gastanker

Well-Known Member
"I'm not anti knowledge, i just cant stand these "rules" that more often than not lead people down the wrong path.
Lets cut through the bullshit and spread good information in a way that is not so absolute."

Amen! Way to many 'rules'. Us noobs need more lessons in developing our natural sensible intuition about growing and harvesting. Very nice post.
 

Chase1126

New Member
Great info. Makes a lot more sense than buying a microscope to tell if your plant is ready to harvest.
 

jjf1978

Well-Known Member
That illustration about the newb grower helped me tremendously! As stated my trichs DO look basically ready but when I look at the bud there is no way it looks ready with the white pistils standing straight out. I was about to come on here and ask if the trichs look ready but the bud doesn't do you still harvest. Thanks bro +rep
 

DaveTheNewbie

Well-Known Member
ok so i like what your saying, there is more to it than just the trichs
i read that sativa buds are more fluffy, indica more nuggety
i assume your pics are indica, what about sativa?
 

Drr

Well-Known Member
It is based on personal experience, and research!!!
I'm just really tired of the only answer to "is it done?" being "get a scope" There is so much more than just the colour of the resin gland heads to take into consideration.
the problem is people thinking for themselves Zues.. it takes men from ice and snow country to think on our own..

And the simple fact that people don't research how PLANTS work before they dive into growing super weed... they just read and try to duplicate... sad but true..
 

snowmanexpress

Well-Known Member
I was informed by great growers here that another sign of coming ripeness, was a second explosion of pistil development as well.

To try to use all info in front of you to judge readyness; pistils, trics, leaves dying, curling, receding hairlines ha. Also a couple grows under your belt with that certain particular strain, to more get a feel of what type of effect you may want out of that plant as well.
 

thelastride67

Active Member
I was informed by great growers here that another sign of coming ripeness, was a second explosion of pistil development as well.

To try to use all info in front of you to judge readyness; pistils, trics, leaves dying, curling, receding hairlines ha. Also a couple grows under your belt with that certain particular strain, to more get a feel of what type of effect you may want out of that plant as well.
+ rep very informative....
 

Bobby9

Well-Known Member
This is exactly the mind set I am getting to now with my growing adventure after 4 harvests, your patience will be rewarded if you resist the temptation. PLUS REP+
 

ideit

Well-Known Member
Good post. I started growing with the mindset of "after 8 weeks i cut." I then evolved to "when 75% of the hairs are red, i cut." And now have the mindset of "when it's ready, I cut."

One of the most important lessons you learn by growing, is being able to listen to your plants.
 
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