Guide For Drying Cannabis Buds In Brown Paper Bags

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If you have spent anywhere between four and six months growing some really nice marijuana, then you do need to finish it off the right way before you smoke or consume it. This means that you need to dry and cure your marijuana properly.

Now, many people use brown paper bags to dry and cure their marijuana. This is exactly what we are here to teach you today, how to cure marijuana in brown paper bags. Here, we’re going to provide you with an extensive and comprehensive guide for drying cannabis buds in brown paper bags.

Drying Cannabis Buds In Brown Paper Bags

Can You Really Dry Cannabis Buds In A Brown Bag?

Some people are quite skeptical about this, but the fact of the matter is that it is actually possible to dry cannabis buds in a brown paper bag.

Sure, many people choose to hang their buds up in a small room or enclosed space with controlled humidity levels. However, the fact is that controlling the humidity levels in a larger room can be quite difficult.

Oftentimes, the humidity levels in a room are not ideal for drying or curing marijuana. Therefore, because brown paper bags absorb a bit of moisture, while also keeping some of it inside, they do make for an ideal cannabis drying medium.

Brown paper bags are also very convenient, not to mention affordable too. They make for an extremely easy, cost effective, and effective way to dry cannabis buds.

However, with that being said, there are some small issues that may arise, especially when it comes to the curing stage, something that we will discuss further below.

However, in the grand scheme of things, using brown paper bags to dry cannabis is something that many experts do, and there are several reasons for this.

curing bud in a paper bag

Drying Cannabis Buds In A Brown Bag: Step-By-Step

What we want to do right now is to provide you with a step-by-step guide on exactly how to cure your cannabis buds in brown paper bags. However, before we start providing you with a little tutorial on this front, we do want to have a quick word on dry trimming versus wet trimming.

If you are dry trimming your cannabis buds, this means that you don’t trim off the fan leaves and the sugar leaves until the bug has been totally dried.

On the other hand, wet trimming means that you trim off the sugar leaves, the fan leaves, and any other unwanted components before you start the drying process.

Generally speaking, wet trimming is the method of choice, mainly because it allows the actual buds to dry much faster and more evenly due to the fact that the outside layers, mainly the families and the sugar leaves, aren’t present anymore.

On that note, when you do wet trimming, you’ll also start to separate some of the larger buds from each other, therefore providing them with more surface area. This will also allow for much more even and consistent drying throughout the whole buds from the outside layer to the interior core.

With that being said, if you plan on using the sugar leaves or the fan leaves for something like bubble hash or for any other purposes, you will want to dry them.

However, personally, we do recommend doing wet trimming, and then drying the sugar leaves and the fan leaves separately. If you do dry trimming, it’s actually going to make quite a mess as well.

That said, let’s provide you with a step-by-step guide on exactly how to use brown paper bags to dry your marijuana.

1. Trim Your Buds

As mentioned directly above, it is recommended that you trim your buds wet. When you do wet trimming, your buds will dry much faster and more evenly when you go to put them in brown paper bags.

Therefore, get yourself some trimming scissors and start removing all of the fan leaves and sugar leaves from your buds.

At this point, you could also cut some of the buds apart so they aren’t too massive, which will also help with even and consistent drying, and it will speed up the process as well.

2. Put The Weed In The Brown Paper Bags

The next step in this process is to put your marijuana buds that have been freshly trimmed into the brown paper bags.

You don’t want to put more than two or three layers in a single brown paper bag, or else there will be too much moisture present in the brown paper bag.

At the same time, your buzz also won’t dry very quickly or evenly, which can cause other problems down the road, such as mold and bacteria growth, as well as having a bit of a punky flavor.

3. Fold the Bag

In terms of drying your marijuana in brown paper bags, the next thing that you need to do is to fold up the bag and close it. It should be relatively airtight, but it should be loose enough so that just a little bit of air can get in.

Remember, you do want a little bit of air to be able to get into the bag with minimal air circulation. You also want the moisture to be able to get out of the brown paper bag.

Remember, the point here is to dry your weed, which won’t be possible if the paper bag holds in all of the moisture, and therefore, it does need to be open just very slightly so that moisture can get out. On that note, while the cannabis is drying in the brown paper bags, you also don’t want to open them up.

The only reason you should ever open them up is to check the humidity level, which should be well under 50%.

If the humidity level is not under 50%, you want to open up the bags a little more, put them in a very dry area, and also point a fan at them to help with air circulation, as this will help moisture to evaporate.

4. Play The Waiting Game

For your marijuana to dry properly in a brown paper bag, if the humidity level in the bag is under 50%, your marijuana should be fully dried in anywhere from four to seven days, depending on how much marijuana you have in the brown paper bags, and how moist it was to begin with, as well has relative humidity.

After about seven days at most, your marijuana should now be ready for the curing stage.

5. Cure Your Marijuana Buds

The final step here is to cure your marijuana buds. Once the marijuana buds have dried enough, you should see that they have started to turn slightly yellowish, and should also be fairly dry and brittle to the touch.

When you touch the outer layer of the buds, they should crumble just a little bit. At this point, you want to fold up the brown paper bags so that they are completely sealed. You then also want to put those brown paper bags inside of plastic bags.

Remember, for the curing process, you want that little bit of moisture left in the buds and the bags to be present. However, you don’t want too much to be present. Therefore, curing should only be started once the marijuana buds are fairly dried.

That being said, brown paper bags and plastic bags are generally not the preferred method for curing marijuana buds. For the most part, using glass Mason jars is recommended.

Therefore, once your marijuana buds have been cured for a couple of days inside the brown paper bags, you should transfer them into Mason jars to finish the curing process, which can take up to two months.

The Importance Of Drying And Curing Buds

You might think that once your marijuana is totally dried, it is ready for smoking. However, this is not actually the case, as curing is necessary. Curing weed is kind of like aging whiskey or wine.

Curing your marijuana is all about increasing the potency, the flavor, and the cannabinoid profile.

In fact, there are several reasons why curing marijuana is necessary for the best results, so let’s take a quick look.

  • During the curing process is when most of the THC develops, therefore it is recommended to cure your marijuana properly for the strongest possible high. The longer and better you clear marijuana, the more THC it will have and the stronger it will be.
  • Curing your marijuana properly will also help to eliminate any harmful bacteria that may be present. At the same time, it is also beneficial for long term storage, as the proper curing of marijuana will prevent and eliminate mold from growing. Of course, once marijuana becomes moldy, you can’t really smoke it anymore.
  • Another reason why curing your marijuana is necessary is because it helps to break down the chlorophyll present in the marijuana, or in other words, helps to break down the plant matter. Chlorophyll does not taste very nice and it will also make smoking the marijuana extremely harsh. Properly curing your marijuana will therefore make it much less harsh to smoke.
  • The next reason why curing your marijuana is necessary is because it just results in a much better smoke in terms of the flavor and aroma. The longer and better the weed is cured for, the more trichomes and terpenes it will have, therefore having a much better flavor and aroma.
  • The other reason why curing your marijuana is necessary is because it may help to eliminate or reduce unwanted effects such as paranoia and anxiety.

Pros And Cons Of Paper Bag Bud Curing

Now that we know how to dry and cure marijuana in a brown paper bag, we do want to take a closer look at all of the pros and cons related to this.

Sure, using the brown paper bag method is recommended by many, but just like any other method, it does have both advantages and disadvantages that need to be discussed.

Pros

  • One of the advantages of curing marijuana in brown paper bags as opposed to Mason jars is that occurs much quicker. This is also the case for drying.
  • Another advantage you get from curing your marijuana buds in a brown paper bag is that it is very simple, because you just have to put them in there, close the bag, and check on the buzz every now and then.
  • Although the taste is highly subjective, many people do think that using brown paper bags for curing marijuana buds results in a great flavor.
  • The other advantage of using brown paper bags to cure marijuana buds is that it generally results in a very even drying process.

Cons

  • One of the disadvantages of curing marijuana in brown paper bags is that it does involve quite a bit of work. Many people put their weed in Mason jars after the brown paper bags, which results in an extra step.
  • Another big disadvantage of using brown paper bags to cure marijuana buds is that they can sometimes be far too dry. If your weed dries too quickly, it won’t be cured properly, and the taste won’t be great either.
  • Once again, taste is subjective, but many people do say that drying and curing marijuana buds in brown paper bags does result in a somewhat weird flavor. Yes, there are occasions where your marijuana can have a slight flavor of the bag.

What Kind Of Paper Bags Should You Use?

In terms of the kind of paper bags you should use for the marijuana drying process, normal brown paper bags, such as those you get when you grow grocery shopping, are more than ideal.

How Long Should Buds Be Left In The Paper Bag?

In terms of how long the marijuana buds should be left in the brown paper bags for drying, it does of course depend on how large the buds are, how moist they are, and how much of them you put in the bag.

If the moisture level is under 50% and you Max out at three layers, it should take no more than seven days for the buds to be totally dried.

If you plan on curing your marijuana in the brown paper bags however, remember to also put them inside of normal plastic bags, in which case you could leave them in there for up to two months.

Drying In Paper Bag VS Hanging

You might now be wondering what the difference between drying in a paper bag and drying via the hanging method is.

Well, when you dry your marijuana in a brown paper bag, it is much easier to control the humidity level, especially if you use special humidity control more moisture control packs.

Moreover, you can also dry your marijuana much more evenly. On that note, when you use brown paper bags, you really don’t need a whole lot of space, as you can put those paper bags anywhere.

On the other hand, if you use the hanging method, you will need a dedicated space to dry your marijuana, which generally means having a separate room or a fairly large closet. Yes, it does require a lot of space, but it also means that you can dry a lot of marijuana at once.

Moreover, you also won’t have to buy or use paper bags. As long as you have some ventilation, controlling the humidity level in a room should be easy enough.

Curing In Paper Bag VS Jar

You might also be wondering what the difference between curing marijuana in a paper bag versus curing marijuana into jar is like.

Well, if you carry a marijuana in a paper bag, it’s not going to take very long because that moisture will evaporate very quickly. This means that you can get to smoking or consuming your marijuana much faster.

However, the issue is of course that your marijuana might dry out way too quickly which means that it won’t cure for long enough. This could result in your bud not developing too much THC and not being very potent.

It could also lead to your marijuana not developing enough terpenes, which means that it won’t have a very good flavor.

For marijuana cures to quickly inside of a paper bag, it might also still have chlorophyll left in it, which isn’t going to taste nice and may also result in a very higher smoke. This is why most people do transfer their weed from the brown paper bags into Mason jars for curing.


Conclusion

As you can see, drying your cannabis buds in brown paper bags is an ineffective method of drying them, and it can even be used to cure them, at least to a certain extent.

However, you do need to follow the steps listed above, and you do need to use the right kind of brown paper bags as well.

Just remember that for the best results, especially when it comes to curing your marijuana, putting it in glass mason jars after you have started the curing process in the brown paper bags is recommended.

Fabian

My passion for the sticky icky started nearly a decade ago, and it all began when I first laid my eyes on the beauty that is the marijuana plant.

I cover all aspects of growing from equipment recommendations to plant health/care tips to help both new and experienced growers.