When is the right time to harvest your cannabis plants?

Knowing when to harvest marijuana can be one of the trickiest aspects of marijuana growing. Too soon and your marijuana won’t be very potent. Too long and you end up with an overly narcotic effect and too strong of a taste.

It’s true, harvesting can be tricky! However, I’ll teach you some strategies for timing your harvest. This guide explains the various methods for determining when the harvest is ready as well as what to expect during the harvest process.

Keep reading to start learning.

The Basics Of Marijuana Harvesting

Harvesting marijuana is a bit like harvesting grapes (or other fruits). The longer you wait, the more potent the grape and the stronger the alcohol. With marijuana, the longer you wait, the more cannabinoids there will be.

That means a stronger product.

See, after the flowering phase, your plant starts to die…

But, guess what?

There are many signs that will alert you of this upcoming event. Such as:

  • The pistils turning red
  • The stem broadening
  • Resin on the buds browning and darkening
  • Leaves starting to yellow and die

If your plant has flowered and you notice any of these symptoms, the chances are good that you are ready to harvest! There are some basic guidelines for when to harvest, but there is some contention on the exact ‘best’ time. Just like with fruits or vegetables, it partly depends on your personal tastes.

Flowering time

  • Indica Strains – Harvest after 8 weeks of flowering
  • Sativa Strains – Harvest after 10 weeks of flowering
  • Autoflowers – 10 weeks from seedling to bud

Pistils

  • 50-70% brown – young, light marijuana
  • 70-90% brown – ripe, heavy marijuana
  • 90-100% brown – sharp, heavy marijuana

Trichomes

  • Clear trichomes – wait a bit longer
  • Milky white/amber trichomes – ready for harvest
  • All Amber trichomes – overripeA magnifying tool is the best way to see if your plants are ready for harvest.How do you know it’s time?Look for glistening, resin-filled trichomes on your buds, like the ones in the photo below.

With the right magnifying tools you can clearly see these details.

There are a few magnifying options to choose from:

Jewelers Loupe

Perfect for those on a budget, this low-tech tool is the least helpful. However, it’s still good enough to provide somewhat of a gauge.

Handheld Magnifier

This option steps it up, but it can be cumbersome to use. You’ll really need to get the focus right to view those trichomes.

Digital Microscope

Although expensivethis is the best option, as it will give you a clear answer as to rather your plants are ready to harvest. The main downside is that you’ll need a laptop to see the results. If you go this route, you’ll definitely need to read the instructions. Keep in mind, all of these options will get the job done, but only if you know how to use them properly.

ARTICLE 1/4 come back next Weedy Wednesday to learn more about harvesting!