The joys of cannabis are not just linked to its effects: flavour and scents have a distinct part to play too. There are many kinds of cannabis, each with its own unique profile of tastes and aromas. Whereas Candyfloss is sweet, for instance, Lemon Haze carries strong citrus accents just as Double Blue enchants with a fresh fruit flavour. This is why growers don’t aim exclusively for huge yields: they also try to improve the taste of their cannabis as a grow goal of its own. Here, you’ll find out how to achieve just that.
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What Causes The Flavour Of Cannabis?
Cannabis is a plant that contains a dazzling array of active components. These include famous cannabinoids such as THC, CBD, CBG, and CBN, to name but a few. The taste and fragrance of cannabis, however, is chiefly caused by terpenes. The plant produces terpenes to protect itself from predation by animals, and against infections. At the same time, however, these aromatic compounds cause the typical aroma of a cannabis strain. Every strain has its own unique terpene profile and scent. On top of that, terpenes can cause entourage effects able to subtly alter the cannabis high.
The more terpenes a plant contains, the stronger its taste and aroma will be. Many cannabis strains have characteristic scents, and some strains are even named after their smell. Taste and fragrance are largely determined by a strain’s genetics, often resulting from a long process of selective breeding. Choco Cheesecake, Pineapple Kush, or Chunky Cookies are clear examples. For a truly stunning experience, Spicebomb is the go-to strain to try; but anyone can improve the taste of cannabis genetics by following the tips we provide below.
Terpenes are produced by trichomes, which are the resin glands found predominantly on the buds of female plants. Terpenoids are organic compounds formed during oxidation processes as the flower buds dry after harvesting. They shape the eventual taste profile of your cannabis, as proper drying and curing is essential for the flavour of weed.
In effect, then, improving the taste of cannabis means increasing terpene content. Cannabis plants can be encouraged to boost terpene production in several ways. Do keep in mind, however, that all strains produce different terpenes resulting in different flavours. Stimulating terpene production will increase the natural scent and flavour of any given strain. That means your crop will taste richer and stronger rather than change its flavour profile.
How To Improve The taste Of Cannabis
Any grower longing for fragrant and delicious cannabis buds has several techniques at their disposal. High and low stress training techniques can work, as can adjusting temperatures and optimising the drying and curing processes.
Stressing Cannabis To Improve Its Taste
Cannabis growers discovered that mild forms of stress introduced during the flowering stage triggers plants to increase terpene production. This is particularly true for stress introduced over extended periods, starting at around two weeks before harvest time. This intervention can improve the taste and scent of the buds as well as crank up terpene content for added effects.
One way to cause stress is known as Low Stress Training, or LST. This technique involves gently bending the stems of the plant, forcing them to grow in new directions. Be careful not to bend the buds: only manipulate the lateral branches. Low Stress Training is usually employed to improve harvest results, but if applied in the flowering stage, it can help improve the taste of cannabis, too.
Another technique that could work is called Supercropping. This is a form of High Stress Training. Supercropping does require a bit of growing experience, because you risk doing more harm than good if you get it wrong. Supercropping also involves redirecting branches; only here, the stems are bruised rather than manipulated by tying them down as happens in LST. Always prevent the stems from breaking on the outside, or you risk ruining the plant. Used in the vegetative stage, Supercropping an also help make effective use of available light and thereby improve harvest results.
Lowering temperature is another way of ‘tricking’ cannabis plants into producing more terpenes. Of course, this is only feasible when growing indoors. In the flowering phase, lower grow room temperatures to under 26 degrees Celsius. Generally speaking, higher temperatures are likely to damage any terpenes present. That means excessive grow room temperatures can actually ruin the flavour of buds. Throughout the flowering stage, terpene production is ramped up dramatically, which requires growers to lower temperatures to foster optimal flavour profiles.
Improving Cannabis Taste After The Harvest
Adjustments to trimming, curing and drying techniques after the harvest can also improve the taste of a cannabis grow.
Anyone who’s ever trimmed a cannabis harvest will testify to the sheer amount of hard work involved. Still, trimming buds the right way is very important. It can help speed up the drying process and make it less prone to mould, as well as improving the taste of cannabis directly. The more ‘sugar leaves’ and other plant materials such as chlorophyll remain in the trimmed buds, the more acrid (and according to many, unpleasant) the smoke will taste. Sitting down for an extended trimming session is definitely worth while!
Proper drying of cannabis after the harvest takes time. On average, it takes between 1 and 2 weeks, depending on strain specifics, whether the buds are trimmed or not, room humidity levels, and circulation. Still, drying is critical for getting high quality buds. If weed dries too quickly (which can happen if conditions are too dry), plants can dehydrate and wither. Drying too slowly increases the likelihood of mould issues. Try to keep a close eye on air humidity throughout the drying process. Ideal relative humidity is somewhere between 45 and 55%. Be sure to promote sufficient ventilation too. Once drying is done, the time for curing has arrived.
Curing is a tried and tested way of improving the taste of cannabis buds. It also boosts their potency. Curing is a process of maturing during which the buds gradually harden. Curing is done using airtight glass (mason) jars filled with buds to about two thirds of total volume. Seal the lid, ensuring that air humidity remains about 62%. Using a hygrometer is a pretty safe way of monitoring humidity levels. Open the lid briefly every day to allow excess air out: a process called ‘burping’. After two to four weeks, the cannabis has cured, which will significantly improve its taste, scent, and effects.
Improve Cannabis Taste Quick And Easy
Growing cannabis can be a very straightforward affair of planting seeds, watching the grass grow, harvesting buds and then consuming them. For some, that is enough. However, with a bit of extra effort, any grow can be raised to a higher level – literally. These practical, easy tips give any cannabis grower options to improve the taste of their harvest while boosting its potency. It doesn’t take much, but it sure pays off. Any weed enthusiasts can tell the difference, so it sure is worth a shot.
Of course, everything starts and ends with the very best cannabis seeds you can order online. After all, good genetics are decisive for improving the quality and taste of a cannabis grow. Time to pick that super-tasty strain and get to work!