Must leave plants drying for 2 months...any ideas?

  • Thread starter guitarguy818
  • Start date
  • Tagged users None
guitarguy818

guitarguy818

4
3
So I'm forced to leave my drying plants mostly unattended for 2 months. Outdoor grow, flushing and then no water a few days before harvest. I've been checking the trichomes and I may be able to harvest and start drying for a few days before I leave, but even so that won't really solve my problem. And yes, I may be able to harvest and cure some of the top buds before I leave, but the timing just doesn't work for the rest.
I'm drying in my basement, I have a Wi-Fi controlled dehumidifier and I'm pretty confident I can keep the temp around 65 and RH around 50% for drying and then raising to 60% for the rest of the two months. I also have an accurate hygrometer and a camera on it so I know what the exact humidity and temp is. I will have someone stopping by around 5-10 days and they'll let me know when they're dry, but there's no way I can get them cured in jars, there's too much and they're doing me a huge favor just by checking on them.

I've read some posts where people have hung the whole plant for several months and it seemed to work well for them. My main concern with doing that, given my situation, is the potential for Bud rot during drying.

So, should I hang the whole plant or branches? And should I wet trim or dry trim?

My current plan is to wet trim and hang branches. Since I can control the humidity pretty accurately I think I can avoid drying too fast, and that should limit Bud rot potential. Or am I overthinking it and should just hang the whole plant and when dry raise the RH to 60%, and do a dry trim 2 months later? Sorry for the long post, but this is the best crop I've grown so far and I really don't want to screw it up now...many thanks for any ideas!
 
chemistry

chemistry

4,081
263
If I had to leave drying for any time longer than a week I would chop off the root ball and hang the whole plant upside down to dry. All you need to do is trim the plant up when you get round to it, can't vouch for the taste or aroma dried this way, but it should be ok at a push.
 
Aqua Man

Aqua Man

Staff
Supporter
24,019
638
Yeah if you can keep the tenps low and humidity hovering 60 I'd think you'd be fine. I haven't done it but I can't see how it would be detrimental in anyway. Maybe loss of some terps?
 
elduderito

elduderito

351
93
Yeah if you can keep the tenps low and humidity hovering 60 I'd think you'd be fine. I haven't done it but I can't see how it would be detrimental in anyway. Maybe loss of some terps?
I'd assume that air flow and total room (air) volume would play a role... i.e. too high air flow (or too large of a room) could "strip" some of the terpenes / flavonoids .. but this is just my 2cents
 
guitarguy818

guitarguy818

4
3
Thanks for the replies. Yes, after drying I should be able to keep the temperature around 60, toward the end of the two months it could probably go lower if I want, but I think 60 should be fine. And the space is not all that large, about 600 square feet, with a small fan pointed away from the drying area to keep the air circulating in the basement.
I'm bummed the timing worked out this way, but hopefully it will be ok. Thanks!
 
3 balls

3 balls

576
143
Thanks for the replies. Yes, after drying I should be able to keep the temperature around 60, toward the end of the two months it could probably go lower if I want, but I think 60 should be fine. And the space is not all that large, about 600 square feet, with a small fan pointed away from the drying area to keep the air circulating in the basement.
I'm bummed the timing worked out this way, but hopefully it will be ok. Thanks!
The humidity is key. 60 degrees is great but RH is far more important. 60 and 60, you have no worries.
 
Madmax

Madmax

5,196
313
I have accidently left a 4 coat hangers full in my all wooden wardobe in outside shed around 2 months.it was autumn when they went in .temps were around 15 deg c down to 6 overnite.it was dry but also soft.i took a hanger out and brought inside and once the dampness was gone it was too dry lol.it can b done but id gather you dont want temps above 16 deg ..dunno what humidity was but it would of been over 62%..oh it was hanging with all the branches cut off the stem and trimmed up..
 
TSD

TSD

1,058
163
I would thoroughly check for any signs of rot, mold or debris because that shit will go rampant if it's there and you hang the whole plant, look it over with a uv light if you have one. If when you get back and trim up, they are too dry, you could put it all in paper bags rolled shut with head space at the top and raise the humidity of the room to where you want it, in a few days the bags should allow the buds to reach the ambient humidity of the room, just turn and burp bags at least daily. Might lose some flavor, but it will improve smokability at least. Also consider washing your plants as that will add time to drying, and using the 3 bucket method will reduce the chances of mold taking hold. Ideally I'd try to do this like a week before you leave, that's the danger zone for mold growth during drying, once it starts to lose some moisture, your odds of mold growth go down. And maybe throw an air purifier in the space, just to catch rogue mold spores? Just a thought.
 
guitarguy818

guitarguy818

4
3
Thanks for the replies. I've had a friend checking every couple of days with a light and no mold of any kind. Temps around 68-69, RH49-53%. The dehumidifier does a great job of regulating RH but unfortunately it also adds heat. Plus we've had an unusually warm Fall. Next year think I'll add a duct register in the basement, and then I can get temps lower with my central air. Regardless everything seems good so far. I cure in Mason jars with bovedas.
 
guitarguy818

guitarguy818

4
3
Thought I'd report the results. To recap, I hung the whole plants (I cut at ground level) in my basement, which is totally dark. I had a small fan blowing away from the plants near the top, maybe 3' away, and another fan on the floor, about 6' away, also blowing away. Both on low speed. I did some wet trimming then, mostly the tops and dense colas, but I ran out of time before I had to leave. I made sure there were no fan leaves or anything larger than an inch or so long, and I lightly trimmed sugars from the top 1/3 of the plants.

Having a friend to check was helpful to peace of mind, and may have been crucial. But he never found any rot, and upon my return 2 months later no rot at all.

As mentioned before, temps were a little higher than I'd want, first month around 67-68, 2nd month was good around 62. Humidity the first 4 weeks was around 50-55%, a few times it got close to 60. I did have to keep an eye on it, and having a wifi dehumidifier was key. You'd think it would be relatively steady but I had to adjust it +/- 5% periodically. Sometimes 2-3 times in a 24 hr period.

At about 4 weeks, when my friend confirmed they were defnitely dried and partially curing, I brought the humidity up around 58-60% for curing while still on the plant. Again, I had to watch it, a few times it crept up to 63% or so. At week 6 it it got colder and my furnace was running more, reducing the humidity, so I turned off the dehumidifier. Humidity got down to 48%, and it wouldn't go up. I got concerned after 2 days of this and my friend very kindly spent several hours cutting and filling mason jars, with bovedas. I had him start on the colas and plant tops. But he didn't trim. When he stopped there was still about 1/3 of the buds on the plants, but most were peanuts on the lower branches. But the best parts were now "safe".

I got back around week 8 and then cut and jarred the last 1/3. Then I went through all the jars he'd filled, and trimmed the rest. Dry trimming was a tiny bit harder, but after a short while i got the hang of it, it's really not that bad. After doing it this way, I view the wet/dry trim debate as somewhat irrelevant to me... they're about equally time consuming. On dry, many of the slightly larger leaves curled up so it's an easy trim. And less resin on the blades. But sugars curled in, and the trick was to simply to learn how close to hold the trimmers. Once I got that, it was about the same as wet.

All in all, it worked. It's very, very potent, incredibly smooth. The smell/taste was just slightly toward the "homegrown", earthy smell at first, when opening jars, although it varies by jar... some smelled fantastic, some had a slight earthy smell. I think the ones I didn't do any wet trimming on wee the slightly earthy ones. However, after curing and burping for about 3 weeks since I got back, the earthy smell on those is almost gone, and the others smell/taste awesome. Curing/burping is definitely helping that.

My conclusions? It worked better than I thought, and having no rot allayed my main fears. Is it my preferred method? No. In terms of potency, I see no difference. For smoothness, it's a bit better, very smooth. The only difference was in the initial earthy smell when i got back, I think because they were jarred before completely trimming. And they weren't burped for a couple weeks after being jarred. So, as you'd expect, proper trim and a few weeks of proper curing/burping improves the taste/smell. And the curing has clearly done that in the few weeks since I got back. It's good to know there's some margin or error, so to speak.

So hopefully next year I won't have this issue, and I'll go back to wet trimming, drying individual branches for 7-14 days, then curing and burping in jars with bovedas for another few weeks. But it's good to know that there are alternative processes, and the difference in results turned out to be pretty minimal.

Again, thanks for the help!
 
Last edited:
T

Taylorharth

2
1
So I'm forced to leave my drying plants mostly unattended for 2 months. Outdoor grow, flushing and then no water a few days before harvest. I've been checking the trichomes and I may be able to harvest and start drying for a few days before I leave, but even so that won't really solve my problem. And yes, I may be able to harvest and cure some of the top buds before I leave, but the timing just doesn't work for the rest.
I'm drying in my basement, I have a Wi-Fi controlled dehumidifier and I'm pretty confident I can keep the temp around 65 and RH around 50% for drying and then raising to 60% for the rest of the two months. I also have an accurate hygrometer and a camera on it so I know what the exact humidity and temp is. I will have someone stopping by around 5-10 days and they'll let me know when they're dry, but there's no way I can get them cured in jars, there's too much and they're doing me a huge favor just by checking on them.

I've read some posts where people have hung the whole plant for several months and it seemed to work well for them. My main concern with doing that, given my situation, is the potential for Bud rot during drying.

So, should I hang the whole plant or branches? And should I wet trim or dry trim?

My current plan is to wet trim and hang branches. Since I can control the humidity pretty accurately I think I can avoid drying too fast, and that should limit Bud rot potential. Or am I overthinking it and should just hang the whole plant and when dry raise the RH to 60%, and do a dry trim 2 months later? Sorry for the long post, but this is the best crop I've grown so far and I really don't want to screw it up now...many thanks for any ideas!
You said you got someone who you trust in your house but they won't jar it ? Would they simple cut your drying lines dropping everything onto a tarp and just fold it or could maybe talk them into throwing it in large totebins and putting a lid on
 

Similar threads

phxazcraig
Replies
27
Views
2K
freezeland2
freezeland2
Fairytalez
Replies
11
Views
280
Brosko82
Brosko82
B
Replies
7
Views
162
E9noxis
E9noxis
Top Bottom