While dense buds are every cannabis grower’s dream, small buds are a nightmare, and every grower wants to know how to upgrade the quality and weight of their marijuana bud. For that reason, maximizing the outcome of a harvest is one of the most important parts of cultivating the marijuana plant (for growers).
Cannabis buds are the fruits of the labor of the cannabis grower that appear when the plant enters the flowering stage. They contain more than 60 cannabinoid compounds and over 400 chemical entities that are either used recreationally or for treating various health problems.
The psychoactive cannabinoid, THC, the one that gives users the “high” feeling, and the anti-inflammatory cannabinoid, CBD, the one that gives a sedative feeling, are the most popular and most researched cannabinoids of all.
Whether you’re a medical marijuana user that’s growing their own yield of CBD-rich medical cannabis, or you’re a recreational marijuana user that’s growing their own stash, you’ll definitely benefit from reading this guide. It will give you all the information about increasing the weight of your cannabis buds with a focus on the right conditions that are needed for a heavier yield.
Research Different Cannabis Strains Before You Start Planting the Seeds
Before going to a dispensary or a seed bank to acquire your cannabis seeds, make sure you research the different strains you’re planning on planting as they’ll need different growing conditions.
For example, a Sativa will need different conditions in order to thrive compared to an Indica. Sativa plants grow less dense buds, and Indica plants grow buds that are more compact, so you’ll need to figure out which ones you’d like to plant before you make your seed order.
Moreover, identical strains can have different versions depending on the marijuana breeder, and may even produce different results. If you’ve tried a White Widow from one breeder, it may not be the same as the one you get from another breeder.
A good idea is to keep an old-school grow journal to keep track of how you’ve been growing your plants. By doing this, you can revisit it in the future to gain insight into what you’ve been doing in previous years in order to improve your yield.
Maintain Proper Lighting and Carbon Dioxide Levels While Cultivating Cannabis
An easy way to increase bud growth is to provide your plants with sufficient light. Light helps marijuana plants to absorb carbon dioxide and convert it into sugars. Getting enough light in the flowering stage is most crucial because that’s when the plants grow buds. Make sure you provide your plants with grow lights that suit the strain you’re growing, whether they’re LED, CFL, or others.
On the other hand, there’s carbon dioxide, the marijuana plants’ food responsible for their flowering and growth. In order to speed up growth and grow bigger buds, you can feed your plant more CO2 which helps increase the ability of your plant to use light. Increasing the levels of carbon dioxide while also increasing the light levels in the grow room may do wonders for your plant and its buds.
Maintain Optimal Temperature and Humidity in Your Cannabis Grow Rooms
Proper temperature and humidity while growing are essential so your plants can reach their highest budding potential. Hot temperatures in the flowering stage may cause loose buds, a less potent aroma, and may also stress your plant into becoming a hermie.
During the flowering stage, the humidity should be around 40-50%. The temperature when the lights are on should be between 68-78ºF (20-26 C°) and between 63-73ºF (15-21 C°) when the lights are off. It’s important not to make temperature differences that are higher than 50ºF (10 C°), but the ideal difference is 40ºF (5ºC).
Maintain Proper pH Levels and Fertilize Your Cannabis Plants
Nutrients and pH levels go hand in hand in marijuana cultivation since pH levels affect the marijuana plant’s ability to absorb the nutrients. Marijuana uses phosphorus, nitrogen, and potassium as its main nutrients. The best fertilizer for weed to promote growth is NPK 10-30-10 (10% nitrogen, 30% phosphorous, and 10% potassium).
To avoid nutrient deficiency or toxicity, keep the pH levels around 6 when growing in soil, and 5.5 if growing in rockwool or hydroponic. Whether you choose soil or hydro doesn’t matter in the end, all that matters is that you prevent a pH imbalance.
Remove Yellow Leaves and Defoliate Cannabis Plants
Not having enough space between the buds together with poor airflow can not only cause mold and bud rot, but it can also result in having small buds. Buds need more space, fresh air, and strong lights in order to get dense and weigh more.
To improve the conditions that will make your buds heavier, try defoliation and remove any dying yellow leaves that are taking up vital nutrients that can go into producing more buds.
Removed fan and sugar leaves can be used to make different kinds of cannabis products like cannabutter (which can be used to make weed brownies or other savory or sweet treats), cannabis oil, kief, hash, cannabis milk, and others. Defoliating may happen at the vegetative stage, but it’s most commonly done during the flowering stage.
Apart from defoliating, you can also try other low strain training and high strain training methods to optimize the yields of your marijuana plants.
Know When to Harvest Your Cannabis Plant
The most important factor when it comes to having the biggest and most potent buds is knowing the right harvesting time. Harvesting too early may result in you sacrificing a huge amount of your yield, while harvesting late may result in buds that have smaller amounts of THC and also produce sedative effects.
In order to check if your buds are as ripe as possible, you can take a look at the marijuana plant under a microscope and check for the telltale sign that indicates that it’s harvesting time. The harvesting window is between 2-3 weeks and to find the best time to harvest the cannabis plant, check out our post about the pistils and trichomes method.
Other Useful Tips
Remove Hermaphrodites and Male Plants So They Don’t Pollinate Your Other Cannabis Plants
This tip isn’t related to the weight of cannabis buds as much as it’s related to the amount of cannabis flowers you have in your grow room. It’s always best to focus solely on female plants as they’re the ones that will produce buds, so keep your male and hermaphrodite plants in a different room.
Hermaphrodite cannabis plants (hermies) can develop if the plants are unhealthy or stressed and they develop both male and female flowers. Both hermies and male plants should be kept away from your regular female plants in order to avoid pollination. Marijuana plants reveal their gender in the vegetative stage (also known as the childhood stage of the plant) which is when you can separate them from the other plants.
Making Dry Weed Heavier by Rehydrating It
If you’ve already dried your high-quality nugs and they’re a bit dehydrated, you will benefit from rehydrating them so as to increase their weight. There are a lot of methods you can use for rehydrating weed, but it’s important that you don’t over-moisten the weed to prevent it from developing mold.
One method of regaining moisture to a dry cannabis bud is to put your buds in a jar with some orange and lemon peel and wait for them to absorb the moisture. This will not only rehydrate your stash, but it will also mimic terpene flavor which is a great way to rehydrate citrusy strains like Lemon Haze, or sour strains like Sour Kush and Sour Diesel.
Final Thoughts on Making Marijuana Buds Heavier
We have provided you with all the general tips and tricks when it comes to growing heavier marijuana buds that range from maintaining optimal light, CO2, humidity, temperature, pH, and nutrient levels, to defoliating your cannabis plants for a better yield.
But what if you’re buying dried weed and want to know if someone’s been adding weight to your buds by incorporating other additives? Read our guide to learn how you can tell if your weed has been laced.
And finally, growing heavier buds takes a bit of practice. However, by filling out a grow journal, you can keep tabs on what you’ve been doing so far in order to improve your growing techniques in the next planting period.