Do you feel like you’re not quite getting the ”hit” you expected? It’s probably because the weed isn’t potent enough.
Luckily, there are a few ways to make weed stronger during the growth process and after harvesting. We discuss both types of methods in our guide below.
Ways to Make Weed Stronger During Growth
If you’re a home weed grower, you might have noticed that some harvests are better (read: more potent) than others. Why? Well, it’s THC.
The THC in cannabis is the reason for its potency. As a rule of thumb, the higher the THC levels, the stronger the blunt will hit.
Try these methods to amp up the THC content in your marijuana crop to produce potent buds.
Select the Right Seeds
No matter how skilled of a weed grower you are, if the genetics aren’t there, you won’t be able to maximize the potency of your cannabis crop. The key is to select strains with a high THC concentration.
An example of such a strain is Yoda OG, with a THC concentration of 15% to 24%. The dominant terpene in this strain is myrcene, which gives the resulting plants a fruity and herbal aroma.
Meanwhile, Gas Monkey has 20% to 26% THC and produces feelings of hunger, sleepiness, and happiness. Some other high-THC strains include:
- Godfather OG
- Gorilla Glue
- Bruce Banner
Once you’ve got the right strains, you can make some changes in the growth conditions for high-potency flowers.
Provide Sufficient Light
Cannabis plants need a lot of light during the flowering stage to produce potent buds with a strong effect. Lack of sufficient light results in the product of airy buds with weak potency.
If you’re growing cannabis indoors, invest in a high-quality LED light. Similarly, you can use LED light bars for outdoor cannabis plants to ensure they get enough light. Also, plant cannabis away from surrounding vegetation and infrastructure so that your plants can enjoy direct sunshine.
Do Not Harvest Too Early
A common mistake new growers make is harvesting their crops too early. You need to give the buds some time to mature before you harvest them.
The first method to determine if the crop is ready for harvesting is by looking at the pistils. These are small white hairs growing in the cannabis buds.
In the initial flowering stage, the pistils are white. As your cannabis plant matures, the pistils turn brown-orange and bend or curl instead of growing straight up.
If you want a potent and high-THC effect, harvest when around 90% of the hairs on the plant have darkened. For a more calming effect, harvest when 100% of the hairs are orange-brown.
Don’t only look at the color, though. Sometimes, the pistils may darken way before the time due to other reasons. For example, if you’re growing a strain that matures in 8 weeks but the pistils have darkened in the 4th week, it’s likely that another factor, like excessive rain or pesticide, has caused them to change color.
If that’s the case, try the trichome method instead. You’ll need a 45x to 200x microscope to observe the trichomes. Here’s how they change color:
- First Flowering Half: Almost crystalline and see-through
- Second Flowering Half: Milky color
- Degradation: Amber color
Harvest your plants when up to 90% of the trichomes have become milky-white. Around 10% of them will be amber. Now is the right time to harvest.
Dry Buds Properly
Dry your cannabis buds for at least 3 days. Many growers slow-dry the buds for anywhere from a week to 10 days for the best smell and potency.
However, you should not dry the buds under a fan since it can make their effect harsh. Air drying is the best approach since it does not weaken the buds. But the air should be cool, as stagnant or hot air spoils the smoothness of the bud.
How to Make Weed Stronger After Harvesting
So you smoked the first batch of your harvest and feel it’s not as strong or potent as you were expecting. Don’t worry; here are some ways to strengthen your weed a little.
Cure the Buds
If the buds are still wet and green, it’s likely they’ve been freshly harvested. Curing them can increase their potency and make them smell stronger. Follow the tips from this article to cure your weed.
Make Some Hash
If you have a huge harvest that isn’t as potent as you wanted, you can turn some of the buds into hash and mix them with the weed.
The dry ice method is ideal for turning buds into hash since it doesn’t result in as much marijuana wastage as other methods. In this method, you put the buds in a bag with dry ice, which freezes the buds’ trichomes.
Sprinkle the hash over your weed buds or mix it with the weed directly. It will definitely make your stash stronger.
Select an Efficient Delivery System
Not all weed consumption methods have the same effect. Some give you a stronger ”high” than others.
For example, a joint or bud isn’t as efficient as a water pipe or a bong. Regular pipes have medium efficiency since they result in lesser smoke waste than direct hits from a joint.
However, the most efficient way to smoke weed is to vape. It lets you get every last bit of the weed into your system. Even better, you can use your vaped buds to make cannabis butter or weed brownies. A bonus!
Research shows that the THC concentration in weed has increased from 4% to 12% in recent years. The increase could be due to users’ preference for strong weed.
Fortunately, it’s possible to increase the potency of cannabis before and after harvesting. But the former is more effective since it allows you to increase the THC content of your buds naturally.
However, the downside is that a higher THC content could increase the likelihood of addiction, resulting in a negative outcome. So, you should choose a mix of high and low-potency buds for a balanced high.