10 Most common weed storage mistakes

Published Apr 5, 2019 10:37 a.m. ET

Growing cannabis is relatively simple to do and now that most regions have introduced some form of marijuana legalization a lot more people are growing their own weed. The peace of mind which comes from knowing what your homegrown plant is exposed to along with the cost savings make setting up a marijuana grow room an appealing option. Though there is much to learn such as the different strains you might encounter, growing cycles, and light or nutrient requirements. Many don’t realize that the essential portion of the process is not to produce the best tasting most potent weed, it’s to maintain the terpenes and cannabinoids in the best state possible to avoid damaging them. Weed that is stored incorrectly may lack taste, moisture content, and strength due to damage to these primary elements. Here are the top ten most commonly made weed storage mistakes alongside an explanation of how these techniques may degrade bud quality.

1. Light exposure - Exposing delicate bud flowers to the light is one of the fastest ways to destroy the THC content of your weed. Sunlight is the most damaging and can degrade cannabinoids such as THC while also stealing necessary moisture. Resulting in a low grade weed that crumbles apart and has lost its potency.

2. Plastic storage containers - Plastic baggies and containers should never be used to store weed, and there are two reasons for this. The first is that low-grade plastics may leach toxic chemicals into the bud. The second is that plastic is naturally a static collector. It will cling to any charge and hold onto it long term. This static is damaging to the trichomes which are drawn out of the bud and towards the plastic by the charge. Unless you want to be able to harvest the crystals to be used for other reasons it’s a bad idea to use any plastic kind of storage.  

3. Too much touching - Sometimes it can be difficult not to manhandle your bud, especially if you’re trying to show it off or simply admire it yourself. The truth is that every time you handle a bud, you are jarring trichomes and causing damage to the bud itself which will begin to crumble apart. The best way to avoid this is to use containers that hold smaller amounts, as just digging around for a bud will have this same effect.

4. Unsealed containers - Weed should always be stored inside of completely air-tight containers to keep the exposure to oxygen to a minimum. Though buds will go through a process of curing that requires air exposure, once that has finished any further reduction in moisture will degrade the bud, make it crumble apart, and it will burn incredibly quickly which is especially detrimental to blunt and joint smokers. When you choose a container, be sure it is equipped with a seal for protection from oxygen and outside contaminants that may cause mold.

5. Mixing weed - There are times where combining old bud with new can be somewhat beneficial which is why it is most recommended to rehydrate weed. Unfortunately, this doesn’t work long term and should only be used with bud that will be smoked relatively soon after. As cannabis degrades, so does, it’s quality. Terpenes, THC, and CBD will all slowly break down over time, which will affect how it tastes, smells, and affects you. This can make a tasty batch of a delicious strain taste burnt and much less enjoyable. To keep the freshest weed possible, store it in separate containers only with other product that is of the same age and quality.


6. Grinder - Grinders seem like a handy place to store your bud for later use, and many of them even offer this feature as a selling point. Weed should never be stored inside of a grinder for any more than one or two days unless it is equipped with an airtight and waterproof compartment. The oxygen exposure and jostling that often occurs since this method is most often used on the move takes mere hours to begin degrading the trichomes that are on the bud. At temperatures that are below freezing, they will harden and break off turning into a powder that falls off the bud.

7. Freezer storage - Storing a fresh harvest in the freezer is one of the most common mistakes made by cannabis growers and consumers. Though it is true that lower temperatures are better for the preservation of the cannabinoids and plant materials, too cold will cause the opposite effect.

8. Big containers - Your weed storage container should always suit the amount you want to store. To do this, there should be no more than a fingers worth of space in any jar or container. The idea is that the less room there is, the less jostling will happen which can damage weed by slowly breaking it apart. Having too big of a container will also expose the bud too much more oxygen which will affect the moisture levels reducing a nice handful of buds to a crumble in no time. The best way to avoid this is to invest in weed storage containers of multiple sizes that are suitable for the amounts you would typically have.  

9. Storing weed with paraphernalia -  I think it’s fair to say that the majority of cannabis consumers have at some point or another stored their favorite weed pipe or bong alongside the bud they planned to smoke in them. It seems like a good idea to keep everything contained in a neat way that can be stashed away easily, but buds should always be kept in a sealed container of their own. Otherwise, ash, resins, and other burnt plant materials will cover the bud making it taste and smell terrible. The best way to avoid this is to invest in a large storage container that can hold all your favorite smoking devices along with a sealed jar of bud to keep it protected.  

10. Keeping weed near appliances - A lot of people know that weed shouldn’t be kept near moisture which tends to rule out bathroom storage. However, many will make the mistake of placing it somewhere in their kitchen instead. The problem with this is the number of appliances that are in the average kitchen and the amount of heat that they produce. If a cupboard is located above an oven, dishwasher, stove, microwave, or any other heat creating appliance than you shouldn’t store weed there. Heat is the second most degrading element to cannabinoids, moisture levels, terpenes, and more. Storing bud near heat will age rather than preserving it. The best place to store weed will always be cool and dark like a basement or cold storage room.



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