When to Harvest Marijuana

When to Harvest Marijuana

Knowing when to harvest marijuana is such a crucial step because if you fail to do this properly, all the time, money, and efforts you spent on growing your green beauties can simply become meaningless!

In the case you do not harvest your crops accurately and timely, you may end up reducing the potency of your juicy buds, and that’s such a pity, it is almost heartbreaking!

But cheers up as we are here to help you master the harvesting point and make the most of your yields!

Once you finish reading this article, you will be completely ready to reap the fruits of your marijuana growing journey with precision, success, and confidence.

When to Start Harvesting your Marijuana Plants?


Okay, so the trickiest part with harvesting those tempting, sparkling buds is none other than proper timing.

If you cut down your green ladies too early, they won’t be ripe enough, meaning they won’t be that saturated with resin.

On the other hand, if you cut your green beauties too late, the THC levels will be already damaged, as THC in the buds which are ready to harvest gradually starts degrading due to light and heat exposure.

Well, since you have once reached the point of reading those lines, then you are going to be safe with harvesting on time because above all, planning is everything!

You can’t just let your green beauties flourish in the hands of destiny and expect quality results from your crops.

Thus, as a rule of thumbs, remember that you need to start monitoring your cannabis buds for being ready to harvest at least a few weeks in advance.

Doing so will allow you to realize the changes that appear in the pistils and trichomes, indicating that the harvesting point is just around the corner.

How to Distinguish When to Harvest Cannabis by the Pistils


The pistils of your marijuana plants are the small, hairy strings that cover the buds. At the beginning of the flowering phase, the pistils appear whitish and rather pointy.

But when buds gradually start to ripen, the pistils become orange and tend to turn brown and/or dark red, while also becoming curvier than anything stringy-like.

Examining the pistils is always a good idea, however, this is not the most precise method, due to the differences in the way pistils appear in various strains, grown in various climates.

That means you may notice the pistils already turning, let’s say dark red, so you get to think it’s time to harvest but you just might be wrong because you are not sure if dark red is the final coloring, or maybe you should wait to see if they become brownish?

Thus, the best and most well-working method for being 100% sure to harvest your cannabis on time, is to use a simple magnifying glass.

How to Distinguish Ripe Weed Buds by the Trichomes

The trichomes refer to those sparkling, sugar-like coatings that cover the buds, and which signalize the abundance of THC.

Trichomes are essentially resin glands and they are very sensitive to all the conditions in the surrounding environment, such as air, light, and temperature, among others.

To the naked eye, trichomes appear only as tiny grains of salt or sugar but if you get to inspect them with the help of a magnifying glass, you can see that actually, trichomes are composed of a stalk and a head.

Trichomes are also clear or white in color before the buds become ready to harvest.

Thus, in the case you opt for monitoring closely the buds through a magnifying glass, at some point, you will notice that this otherwise transparently whitish color starts to become more milky-like and creamy-hued.

It is exactly those creamy white hues that indicate your buds are all-ready to cut down. In the case you wait some more, you will see how the trichomes start showing amber hues but this is not the point you want to reach.

Those golden, amber hues signalize that THC has started degrading and becoming weaker in potency. The best magnifying glass to utilize fits into the 50x-100x dimensions, as this will be enough to monitor the trichomes carefully and efficiently.

More Essential Tips on When to Harvest your Marijuana Plants for Best Results

Okay, harvesting is really a process which will put your precision to a test!

But on another note, it is actually great that you can follow some strict guidelines on mastering your harvest since as we know very well, most of the time, cannabis plants send off tricky and confusing signs, and growing your weed is anything but strict science!

If you stick to the advice provided above, then you are almost ready to make the most out of the harvesting point, however, that doesn’t mean you are there yet!

For best results, you want to cut down your green beauties once the night has fallen.

Talking about the night, we mean the time of the day when your marijuana plants are already going to sleep and in the case of indoor growing, this is the period when you simply switch off the lights!

Direct light serves to drive starches and sugars from the root system of your plants. Meanwhile, when the lights go off, your green ladies will be busy storing their food all the way up to the buds.

Thus, by cutting your precious green goddesses during the “nighttime” hours, you will prevent the sugars and starches from moving downwards back to the roots.

Another trick experienced cannabis cultivators simply adore is to lower the humidity in the growing room a day before harvesting.

For outdoor growers, you can simply let the growing medium become bone-dry which will also lower the humidity levels, affecting your marijuana plants.

Dry air simply raises the resin production with a last and quick spike to make sure you lay your hands on the juiciest, cannabinoids-rich buds!