I’m fairly new around here but quickly noticed the amount of great people sharing their knowledge and experience in this community. I’m approaching my first harvest and curious what steps or practices you guys take in the final steps of obtaining them sweet, sticky buds?
Hi cheddar let’s see if we can get some growers
I keep it pretty simple for the end-game. I grow in hydro, so your end-game might be somewhat different.
I typically start reducing my nutrients around 3 weeks prior to when I think I will harvest. Not a lot, I sort of let it happen automagically by just topping off my plants as the use up the reservoir solution… if they are feeding properly this works pretty well.
Then the last week when I think they are going to be harvested soon, I typically do like to run a Florakleen flush in my system for a week prior to harvest. I don’t really think this is entirely necessary in hydro, and I think you can get away with just flushing them for a day (and honestly probably don’t need to at all if you aren’t overfeeding significantly).
In soil, however, most growers like to just run plain water (no nutrients) the last week or two of their plant’s lives. Some growers will also include a flush of their plants.
Right before harvest, some growers intentionally artificially stress their plants in the hopes of creating more trichomes (the resinous bulbs on your flowers that contain THC). THese can include extended periods of darkness of 24-48 hours prior to cutting them down, covering your pots with ice to chill the roots down, etc. I personally don’t think those things are worth even bothering with on your first harvest, but 24 hours of darkness is an easy one and has other benefits and only requires you to turn the lights off a day before you chop them down.
Thanks for the response @Bogleg. I’m growing in soil and have reduced the nutrient intake the past couple weeks. I plan to flush the final week. I’ll take your advice on turning the lights off for a day before cutting them down. Thanks!
For soil and media I like to monitor the output TDS and continue a water only regimen until under about 250 ppm out. Darkness is used to sequester residual salts in the root zone so that when harvested the branches are removed from that reservoir of nutrients (cutting it down). There are techniques like stem splitting and ice around the root ball but frankly if you have optimized your grow this is the only time it MIGHT show a benefit.
I also run a dehumidifier the last weeks of flower as a matter of course and try to get down to around 25% RH prior to harvest. This will help with trichome production to a degree but mainly to prevent any bud rot issues. I also wash my harvest in peroxide at the chop.
Never crossed my mind to measure the output TDS of the flush. That’s a great tip. I don’t have a dehumidifier as I live in a dry region. My humidity is currently floating around %40. Thanks for explaining the purpose of the darkness. I’ll research those other techniques you mentioned for possible use in the future.
I only ever use a dark when a plant is refusing to amber up for me.
24 hr dark? @missiles I wouldn’t expect to see any noticble changes with less than 3-4 days dark.
With no dehumidifier make sure you have good airflow moving the air constantly coming up to harvest. And it might be a good idea to do a peroxide wash right after chop just in case there’s any mildew hiding from you.
I’ll share the infamous Jorge Cervantes video on it. All you need to know right here.
I’ll have to get a dehumidifier for next go around. Airflow could be better but it’s there. Any advice on a proper peroxide wash?
When in soil, I do a “dry out” period after flushing and don’t harvest until the leaves start to sag from being under watered.
This always made me feel confident all the “residuals” were out of the plant and kinda ushers it into the drying process
Very nice. I appreciate the help!
Hello @Cheddar, I to enjoy Soil media. There has been much chat on how to n what to do when ready.
I too like @tdubwilly, like to dry them out previous to my dark period.
Makes snagging the leaves off with ease and not tear or snip Buds.
When to chop is Growers choice. I do like the turning of amber color on my Trichomes. The Pistils are usually brown n curled up.
I then Bowl trimm now and set them on racks.
Then darkness with GOOD AIR CIRCULATION. Totally check them twice a day till they snap when I break up bigger buds.
Then they go into coolers to rest. Then baged or jars. The curing process can take up to 10-14 days.
If you hang them to dry. A black light flash light will pretty much let you know when you are dry as well. When wet. The buds and stems show purple. As they dry out. You will see the color change back to the natural green. By the time I am all green. I am ready to remove them.
This is great info! Those buds look nice! I’ll take your and tdubwillys advice on letting the soil dry out. So you cut the buds off to dry on the rack instead of hanging them up on the stalks?