Knowing exactly when is marijuana ready to harvest will result in a whole different level of potency and different effect of your crops.
Many cannabis connoisseurs tend to get way too perplexed over deciding when it’s the right time to cut down their green princesses.
Well, actually, there is nothing that confusing once you know how to examine the sign of bud maturation.
Read on to find everything you need to know and harvest your green medication like a pro.
When is Marijuana Ready to Harvest: A Comprehensive Breakdown
Before we dig any further, it is crucial to understand that there is no strict fit-them-all guide on when to harvest your marijuana plants.
With that in mind, the growing timeline provided by the breeders is only a common guide.
That same guideline cannot possibly embrace all the multiple variations of soil, fertilization and watering schedules, as well as indoor or outdoor growing for all the different cannabis cultivators around the globe.
However, when you know what signs to look for, then nothing stands on your way for determining accurately the best time to harvest your cannabeauties.
#1 – Examine the Pistils
The marijuana pistils are those fizzy hairs which stick out of the juicy buds. When the right time to harvest is near, the pistils will gradually change color.
At first, all pistils appear whitish and pointing straight outwards from the delicate buds. Later on, as the flowering stage reaches its peak, the pistils turn brownish and they curl up instead of looking perky.
Pistils are easy to spot and you don’t need any special tools.
When you notice almost 50% of the pistils have changed their color, you can still harvest your weed.
However, this won’t produce the biggest potency out of the high but it will produce a specific effect, known as “early harvest high”. This type of high is described as more of an in-your-head experience which is cool but doesn’t work wonders for pain relief.
If you want to get the best potency of the THC in your green medication, you should wait until an average of 50-70% of the pistils has turned brownish.
On another note, provided you don’t mind sacrificing some of the THC potency but you are looking for more of the CBN cannabinoids power, then you can wait until about 90% of the pistils darken.
With any of the methods involving examining the pistils, keep in mind that this is not the most accurate way to make sure it’s the perfect time to harvest, though.
For example, there are many strains which are ready to harvest with less of 20% of the pistils turned dark! On another note, many auto-flowering strains get all their pistils brownish and still need a few days before the buds are just ripe enough to harvest.
That’s why your best move is to combine the examination of pistils along with more accurate observation of the trichomes.
#2 – Examine the Trichomes
The trichomes are not quite visible to the naked eye.
Anyway, all you need is an ordinary magnifying glass to monitor the changes in trichomes’ color. On another note, if you are serious about marijuana growing, investing in a compact digital microscope will be worth it in the long-run.
Trichomes look like miniature plastic mushrooms.
It is crucial to start inspecting their color a few weeks before the harvesting point. By doing so, you will be able to tell the difference in their hue much more effortlessly.
At first, when the buds are not ready to harvest yet, the trichomes appear transparent in color.
Gradually, they change, turning a more milky, cloudy shade.
And finally, trichomes start turning amber.
Although, there are some exceptions. For example, some strains would rarely exhibit amber-colored trichomes. That’s especially common among some Haze and Sativa strains.
In such cases, when you clearly see the trichomes have turned cloudy but don’t become amber, that simply means the time to harvest has arrived. But usually, here is what you want to look for when examining the trichomes.
When more than 80% of the trichomes have turned milky whitish instead of being transparent in color, you can expect to get the most potency out of the herb.
That also makes up for a better and smoother taste upon consumption, and the THC levels are at their peak. The high will work great for pain relief, as well. The more cloudy, creamy-hued trichomes you can see, the better.
If you wish to get a more relaxing high with increased benefits on targeting stress and anxiety with less of the “couch-lock” effects, then you can wait to see some of the trichomes turn amber.
Then again, don’t forget that waiting until you notice part of the trichomes become amber will inevitable decrease some of the psychoactive properties of the herb, so make your mind.
The Bottom Line
Understanding when is marijuana ready to harvest is not that painful, don’t you think, my fellow cannabisseurs? In fact, even a child can examine the color of trichomes with accuracy, so you can do it, too.
Apart from harvesting your weed on time, don’t forget that proper drying and curing will make a monstrous difference in the taste, effect, and potency of the herb.
Just skip the hurry and enjoy the ride while also giving us a thumbs up. Spreading our knowledge about cannabis cultivation is something our entire team ADORES but we cannot succeed without your support!
Wish you a happy, mess-free, and stress-free marijuanaventure!