How to Tell If Cannabis Is Ready to Harvest

It’s harvest time! Here’s a quick guide on how to tell if your cannabis is ready to be harvested.

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Introduction

Cannabis harvesting is a process that involves delicate timing and a sharp eye. But, if you know what to look for, you can easily determine when your cannabis is ready to harvest. Keep reading to learn all about it!

The first thing you need to do is to take a look at the trichomes on the cannabis plant. These are the small, hair-like growths that cover the plant. They contain THC, CBD, and other cannabinoids. When they are clear, the plant is not yet ready to harvest. However, when they turn milky white or amber, it is time to harvest. You can use a microscope to get a closer look at the trichomes if you want to be absolutely sure.

Another thing you can do is take a look at the pistils of the plant. These are the small hairs that protrude from the buds. When they are straight and pointing upwards, the plant is not yet ready. However, when they start to turn downward and curl in on themselves, it is time to harvest. This usually happens when about 50-70% of the pistils have turned color.

If you want to be extra certain that your plant is ready, you can wait until about 80% of the pistils have turned color. However, keep in mind that this will result in a more potent product since more cannabinoids will have been produced by this point.

Once you have determined that your plant isreadyto harvest, remove each bud fromthe stem carefully so as notto damage them. Hang them upin an airy, dark room tomandownfor about three weeksto allow themto cure properly beforesmoking or consuming themin any other way

The Trichomes

The first step in telling if cannabis is ready to harvest is to check the trichomes . The trichomes are the tiny hair-like growths on the cannabis plant that contain the plant’s cannabinoids. They should be milky white or amber in color. If they are still clear, the plant is not ready to harvest.

What Are Trichomes?

Trichomes are tiny, hairlike growths on the surface of cannabis plants. These structures are where the plant produces its cannabinoids, terpenes, and flavonoids. In other words, they’re responsible for the majority of the plant’s medicinal and psychoactive properties.

The trichomes on a cannabis plant will change color as the plant matures. When they’re first formed, they’re clear. As the plant continues to grow, they turn white or milky. And when the plant is ready to harvest, they turn amber or brown.

You can inspect your plant’s trichomes with a magnifying glass or microscope. This will give you a good idea of when your plant is ready to harvest. Generally speaking, you want to harvest when the majority of the trichomes are milky white with a few amber ones mixed in. If most of the trichomes are amber, that means the plant is past its prime and you might not get the best results from your harvest.

How to Check Trichomes

Determining when to harvest your cannabis plants can be tricky. One major factor in deciding when to harvest is the maturity of the trichomes, which are the tiny, resin-secreting glands that cover the entire surface of the plant. These glands contain high concentrations of THC, CBD, and other cannabinoids and terpenes, which are responsible for the plant’s psychoactive and medicinal effects.

The best way to check trichomes is with a jeweler’s loupe or a microscope. You’ll want to inspect the pistils (hairs), which will change color as the plant matures. You’re looking for trichomes that are clear or milky white—these are immature and not yet ready to harvest. For best results, wait until at least 50-75% of the trichomes have turned amber/brown before harvesting. This is when THC levels are at their peak and you’ll get the most potent buds.

If you don’t have a loupe or microscope, you can still roughly estimate when your plant is ready by inspecting the buds with your naked eye. The buds should be dense and covered in white trichomes. If they look dry and brown, they’re probably past their prime.

The Pistils

One of the most important things to look at when trying to determine if your cannabis is ready to harvest are the pistils. The pistils are the little white hairs that stick out of the buds. They can be a good indicator of when the plant is ready to harvest.

What Are Pistils?

If you’re new to growing cannabis, you may be wondering what pistils are and why they’re important. Pistils are the tiny, white hairs that protrude from the buds of female cannabis plants. They play an important role in the plant’s reproduction cycle and also indicate that the plant is maturing and getting ready to harvest.

As the plant grows, the pistils unfold and curl around the pollen-producing male flowers. The pollen from the male flowers eventually fertilizes the female flowers, resulting in seed production. In a sense, pistils can be thought of as the plant’s reproductive organs.

Pistils also play an important role in determining when a cannabis plant is ready to harvest. As the plant matures, the pistils begin to darken and curl inward. This is a sign that the plant is getting close to harvest time. The length of time it takes for pistils to darken can vary depending on the strain, but as a general rule of thumb, it takes around 8-10 weeks for most strains to reach maturity.

So, if you’re wondering whether or not your cannabis plants are ready to harvest, take a close look at the pistils. If they’re beginning to curl inward and turn dark brown or red, then it’s time to start harvesting!

How to Check Pistils

Pistils are the thin, hair-like growths that protrude from a cannabis flower’s calyx. In the early stages of flowering, these pistils are white or pale in color. But as the plant matures, they gradually change to shades of pink, red, orange, or brown.

The vast majority of growers believe that cannabis is ready to harvest when 50-70% of the pistils have darkened or curled in. At this point, THC levels are at their peak and the plant’s terpene profile is fully developed.

To check the pistils on your plants, use a small magnifying glass or jeweler’s loupe. This will allow you to get a close look at individual flowers without disturbing them. Once you’ve determined that 50-70% of the pistils have darkened, it’s time to harvest!

The Color

One of the ways to tell if your cannabis is ready to harvest is by looking at the color of the pistils. The pistils are the small hairs that protrude from the buds. When the plant is first starting to flower, the pistils are white. As the plant matures, the pistils change color. They will first turn red, then orange, and finally brown.

What Does Color Mean?

Cannabis flowers generally change color as they mature. The speed of this change and the overall final color can depend on many factors, including strain, weather, fertility, and even the time of day. While it’s not an exact science, in general, you can expect the following:

The further along the plant is in its life cycle, the more vibrant and saturated the colors will be.
Cannabis grown outdoors in full sun will often have brighter colors than cannabis grown indoors under artificial light.
Cannabis grown in hot weather will often have brighter colors than cannabis grown in cold weather.
Cannabis grown with high levels of nitrogen will often have more muted colors than cannabis grown with low levels of nitrogen.
As a general rule of thumb, indica strains tend to have dark green leaves with purple hues, while sativa strains tend to have bright green leaves with yellow/orange hues. However, there are many exceptions to this rule.

The following are some common color changes you may see as your cannabis plants mature:

Green leaves turning yellow: This is a common sign of stress and usually indicates that the plant is not getting enough nitrogen. You may need to adjust your fertilizer regimen accordingly.
Green leaves turning brown: This is a common sign of stress and usually indicates that the plant is not getting enough water or that the humidity is too low. Make sure you are watering your plants regularly and maintaining a relative humidity (RH) level of 40-60%.
Yellow leaves turning brown: This is a common sign of stress and usually indicates that the plant is not getting enough water or that the humidity is too low. Make sure you are watering your plants regularly and maintaining a relative humidity (RH) level of 40-60%.

How to Check Color

As your cannabis plants mature, you’ll notice the colors of the hairs on the buds change. For example, white hairs turn dark orange or brown as the plant matures. Checking the colors of your plant’s hairs is one way to tell if it’s time to harvest.

Here’s a general guide to the colors of cannabis hairs and when to harvest based on hair color:
– Hair color: All white
When to harvest: 2-3 weeks before peak maturity
-Hair color: Predominantly white with some orange
When to harvest: 1-2 weeks before peak maturity
– Hair color: Mostly orange with some brown
When to harvest: Peak maturity
– Hair color: Mostly brown
When to harvest: After peak maturity

Conclusion

Once you have a feel for the individual plant’s maturity, it’s time to make your final decision. Collect a few samples of buds from different areas of the plant and look at them under a magnifier. If the trichomes are predominantly cloudy with just a few amber ones mixed in, the plant is probably not quite ready. If 50-75% of the trichomes are amber, the plant is likely perfect. And if most of the trichomes are amber with just a few clear ones mixed in, the plant is probably overdue and will start to degrade in potency and taste.

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