Photo from Herb.
Before the days of processing equipment and automatic trimming machines, cannabis cultivators relied on one tool to shape and groom their prized flowers—scissors.
Dried cannabis flowers undergo dramatic changes after harvest. First, they’re hang-dried for up to two weeks to eliminate excess moisture. During this time, the plants off-gas excess vapor and begin to darken in color.
After drying, they undergo yet another transformation: trimming and manicuring. In this episode of It’s in the Details, Marty, Post-Harvest Lead Hand at DOJA, walks us through the process of hand-trimming cannabis after harvest.
After drying, cannabis flowers are adorned with long, wispy leaves that need to be removed before they make it into the hands of the consumer. These leaves are often called “sugar leaves.” and they peek out between the trichome-coated bracts that make up cannabis flowers.
Trimming these flowers away immediately improves the quality of the dried bud. “[By trimming] you’re removing any leaf that doesn’t have adequate trichome coverage,” says Marty. This ensures that you’re consuming more trichomes than you are chlorophyll-laden plant material.
Nowadays, many cannabis processors use machinery to trim cannabis in bulk. But, the team at DOJA, a craft cannabis brand from British Columbia, does it the old-fashioned way: by hand.
Hand-trimming is an homage to tradition. “It’s more of a classic style,” Marty explains. To hand-trim, all you need is a pair of sharp scissors and some latex gloves. “You’re essentially removing any fluff, and what you should be left with at the end is a nice, dense bud.”
And there are other benefits to doing it the way, too. “You also get to spend a little time with each strain,” Marty says, “and notice it’s differences.”
Wondering what an excellent hand-trimmed bud looks like? Watch and enjoy it!