Keeping It Fresh & Green: Storing Cannabis Flowers
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Now that marijuana is becoming normalized, the average weed baggie that you can buy at a corner store or gas station is becoming less seen. Street dealers that sell larger amounts of flowers tend to use a common household Ziploc bag to give to their customers while dispensaries and retailers use prescription-like bottles and glass jars. If you’re spending money, sometimes top dollar, on marijuana, you want to make sure you get the best product for your money. But have you ever considered that the way you store your cannabis can actually increase your chances of getting more for your money? Storage is important, and we’ll break down different techniques, their pros and their cons.
temperature & humidity
It’s important to know some key factors about cannabis before we dive into storing techniques. Marijuana flowers have no exact expiration date, meaning when you pick them off of the plant, there’s no timer on how long they’re smokeable before they “go bad.” BUT, it has been said that cannabinoids maintain stability for up to two years when stored under the proper conditions. Like wine, cannabis is best when aged in a cool, dark place. Mildew and other molds on cannabis and other organic matter grow abundant in temperatures between 77° and 86° F. Too much heat can cause cannnabinoids (CBD) and terpenes (THC) to dry out, which is basically the reason why you’re smoking the flowers. When there’s less cannnabinoids and terpenes, the smoke tends to be very harsh on the throat.
Storing cannabis in lower temperatures can result in slowing the process of decarboxylation of cannabinoids. Decarboxylation, or decarbbing, is the process that transfers THC-A into the psychoactive THC. Basically, your flowers won’t give off the strong high that you’re looking for if you store them in too cold of a temperature. In a cool setting, the air tends to carry less moisture, which is also big component of cannabis storage. Humidity control is important in keeping away mold and mildew from your flowers. It’s advised is to keep cannabis between 59% and 63% relative humidity (RH) when stored to maintain and enhance the color, consistency, aroma, and flavor of the nugs.
As we said before, a cool, dark place is the best way to store your trees. UV rays break down many organic materials, and cannabis is not excluded. It has been stated that light is the single, biggest factor in the degradation of cannabinoids. Strong rays from the sun can basically bleach your nugs, giving them a yellow-ish hue. Depending on the intensity of the light, it can also compromise the cannnabinoids and terpenes as well.
the truth about plastic bags
Plastic bags; whether they be weed baggies or Ziploc’s, are the absolute worst way to store you cannabis. They have no protection from light, air, temperature or moisture. Ziploc bags are unable to preserve the odor of your flowers as well, so they’re not the best choice for being discreet. But most importantly, plastic bags have a static electricity that naturally pulls the trichomes off of your nugs while in the bag. The quality of your cannabis is compromised inside of a plastic bag because it removes the terpenes from the flower and leaves them stuck to the inside of the bag.
glass jars are the best option
The best way to store you cannabis is in an air-tight glass container like a mason jar. Glass jars have a neutral charge, meaning you won’t have that static electricity like you would with a plastic bag. An opaque jar with a white exterior are recommended because they reflect heat which in turn keeps the flowers cool. Vacuum seal jars and containers minimize oxygen exposure.
stainless steel containers
Another commonly used option are stainless steel containers. The metal doesn’t interact with the nugs at all and keeps all moisture out, so long as there is a plastic seal to keep an air-tight temperature. Stainless steel containers are durable and impenetrable to light. This is the number 1 option for growers and connoisseurs because they are strong, yet lightweight and usually stackable.
cupboards, cabinets, closets & drawers
These are the perfect examples of places that have the characteristics of a cool, dark place. Never keep your cannabis near electronics or other heat generating gadgets, because the heat will compromise your nugs. Leaving your flowers out in the open leaves them vulnerable and exposed to light, heat, and/or humidity. People have been known to keep their cannabis in their refrigerator or freezers, but that isn’t a good idea. Even if your fridge was set to 70°, the constant opening and closing of the door causes to much fluctuation in temperature to play it safe. Plus, the brutally cold air against your nugs will cause the terpenes to break off while in handling before you get to smoke.
keep away from paraphernalia
Let’s be honest, we don’t always clean our bongs, bowls, grinders, etc. after each use. And for that reason, you should not store you flowers near any of your paraphernalia. One big factor is the odor that comes from your weed accessories can very much compromise the quality of your flowers. You also want to be sure that you keep your cannabis away from any other fragrant items, such as sprays to conceal the smell of weed smoke, lighters, cans of butane, etc. You don’t want any harmful chemicals coming in contact with what you will eventually inhale.
Keeping It Fresh & Clean
STORING CANNABIS FLOWERS