You’ve labored for months growing your marijuana and now you’re reaping your rewards. But your journey towards smoking the best home grown buds doesn’t stop at harvesting. Storing your buds properly is just as critical a step as it is part of the drying and curing process.
How and where you store your dried flowers will drastically alter its quality and if you grew some nice, fat nugs, please don’t just store them in ziplock bags. Let’s look into why you should give proper storage of your marijuana some extra attention.
The curing process
The drying process can take up to 12 days and while you can smoke them after that, don’t expect them to be as nice as properly cured buds. Curing is different from drying. Drying is the removal of moisture while curing is the process of letting your weed “mellow out”; you basically let them sit in a controlled environment like an airtight jar away from light so that unwanted compounds like sugars, starches and chlorophyll can degrade while terpenes and cannabinoids are preserved. During this time, your weed will also become more potent since THCA will degrade into THC.
So after you’ve dried your weed, put them in a suitable container and store in a cool dark place. This is because factors like light and temperature play a significant role in the curing process.
- Light – Light, particularly UV, is the biggest factor that can affect the degradation of cannabinoids and terpenes in your buds.
- Temperature – Your buds have to be kept at the right temperature, which is around 21°C. Mildew, molds and other organisms thrive at higher temperatures while anything lower and the curing process will slow down significantly.
- Humidity – Your weed has already been dried so during the curing process, you need to maintain a balanced humidity of around 59% to 63%. Anything higher and you may get mold growth, anything lower and your weed might dry out too much, making trichomes brittle and essential oils evaporate. You can measure humidity levels by leaving a hygrometer in the curing jar and if you need to adjust it, use humidity control packs.
- Air – Oxygen is needed during the curing process but too much will oxidize your weed. You typically “burp” or open your weed jars to let fresh air in maybe once every day or two during the first week of curing, decreasing in frequency as time goes on.
Under the right conditions, weed will store for a very long time. As mentioned, THC and most other cannabinoids degrade overtime so it is best to consume your weed a few months after the curing period.
Now if for some reason, you have an abundance of buds that you cannot use up but you don’t want them to go bad, one solution would be to freeze them to prevent THC degradation. According to some studies, THC levels remain fixed at temperatures -20 °C and below.
Choosing your marijuana storage container
If you’re serious about weed and you want your buds to be as delicious as possible, then don’t be cheap or lazy. Put the weed that you’ve worked so hard for in a proper storage container.
Nowadays, weed containers come in so many shapes and sizes. Most are also cheap but there are some expensive ones as well. In most cases though, you don’t need to spend a lot just to keep your buds fresh and secure. Here’s the bare minimum that you should look for in a good marijuana container:
- The material in contact with the weed should not chemically react with it.
- It should keep odors in and out.
- It should be able to keep the right amount of dryness inside.
- It should protect its contents from light and UV.
Keep out of reach of children
Marijuana should obviously be kept out of the hands of children. In some states like California, the law requires dispensaries to put the marijuana they sell in child-resistant, tamper-evident packaging. These marijuana containers are also called “compliant packaging” and even if you don’t have a kid that might get to your stash, a child-resistant container secures your marijuana better and in most cases, does not cost more than regular packaging.
Popular marijuana container styles
Glass is still one of the most popular packaging material for almost any kind of food or drink since it can be sterilized by heat and does not react with its contents.
- Completely inert
- Can be cleaned thoroughly and sterilized
- Lets light/UV in
- Glass stash jar with clamping lid – $11.99
- Wide-mouthed airtight glass jar – $29.99
- Airtight glass vials – $34.95
Plastic bags and pouches
Food and medical-grade plastic is also a popular marijuana packaging material since it is biochemically inert. It is also lightweight, tough, but cheap to manufacture.
- Very cheap
- Flexible but tough
- Can protect from light and UV
- Can only be used a few times
- Does not protect weed from getting crushed to temperature changes
- Disposable ziplock foil plastic pouches – $11.99
- Odorless mylar bags – $17.99
- Resealable polyethylene heat seal bags – $23.99
Plastic can also be made into marijuana containers rigid enough to protect its contents while still being lighter than glass or metal.
- Light but shatter-proof
- Contents won’t get crushed
- Can protect from light and UV
- Can’t be sterilized
- Looks cheap and somewhat conspicuous
- Will eventually get worn out
- Water-proof plastic tube containers – $16.99
- Plastic stash jar with shake separator – $17.95
- Stash tube with child-resistant cap – $8.95
Metal containers offer unparalleled protection and a premium feel but they can be as bulky as glass containers and are often more expensive.
- Very tough, shatter-proof yet light
- Looks stylish and cool
- Locks odors in
- Completely protects contents under any conditions
- Can be bulky and conspicuous
- Can be a bit more expensive
- Can get dented
Fabric or cloth isn’t typically used as the sole material for marijuana containers. Rather, weed pouches are often lines with a couple of other odor-blocking, moisture resistant materials.
- Can be inconspicuous. Looks like a normal bag/case.
- Flexible and relatively flat
- Doesn’t wear out as easily as plastic
- Keeps odors in and out
- Smell-proof pouch bag – $16.99
- Odor-proof, dog-tested case – $27.95
- Smell-proof bag with lock – $15.99
Wooden boxes are typically used more as a fancy container reserved for home use. Similar to cigar humidors, these containers are often decorative and well-crafted items meant for appreciation and enjoyment.
- Looks very handsome.
- Often designed to fit other marijuana accessories like a grinder, stash jar, etc.
- Large capacity
- Great gift for a marijuana connoisseur
- Not ideal for transporting marijuana
- Can be expensive
- Wooden stash box with rolling tray – $59.95
- Cannabis humidor with glass lid – $199.95
- Premium stash box with strong lock – $39.95
Frequently Asked Questions
This depends on what you need. One of the most popular choices is the wide-mouthed glass mason jar but it is better suited for curing and home storage. Airtight aluminum stash bottles are great for keeping marijuana in your travel bag while odor-proof plastic tubes are great for carrying smaller amounts in your pocket.
Any container can be used to store marijuana as long as it is made of inert materials like glass, it is airtight and keeps moisture and odors in and out. If it is not opaque, make sure to keep it in a dark place.
The type of storage that you use for your marijuana matters, so don’t skimp on the quality of the containers that you buy. There are all sorts of containers available on the market but when shopping, here are some important things you need to keep in mind:
- The material used must be inert, meaning it won’t chemically react with its contents.
- It must seal odors in and out.
- Better if it’s shatter-proof and not fragile.
- If you’re going to use it outside of your house, better if your container looks inconspicuous or discreet.