Trimming Buds: How to Trim Weed

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Written By Rocky Horton

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If you’re a cannabis connoisseur, then you know that properly trimmed buds are essential to a great smoking experience. But if you’re new to the grow game, you might wonder how to trim weed properly. Trimming buds is a delicate process that requires time, patience, and a sharp eye.

For beginner, the process can seem daunting. But with a little practice, you’ll be able to trim your buds like a pro! If you’re looking to produce high-quality cannabis, you need to learn how to trim weed properly. This article will show you how to trim weed the right way. We’ll also give you tips on getting the best results. So let’s get started!

Why is Trimming Weed Important?

Trimming weed is important for several reasons.

1. Trimming weed helps to improve the overall appearance of the buds. Removing excess leaves or stems will give the buds a neater, more manicured appearance. This is especially important when selling, but can also be a source of pride for home growers.

2. For better Smell– Buds cut before being placed in jars develop a stronger “weed” odor over time. Untrimmed buds, on the other hand, develop a “planty” hay odor if stored in an airtight container for an extended period (several weeks to months).

3. Easier on the Throat – When vaping or smoking, leaves are “harsher” on the throat/lungs than flowers. Trimming away excess leaf debris makes buds easier to inhale or evaporate.

Trimming slightly reduces the overall yield, but the increased taste and aesthetics compensate for the lost weight. If you want trimmed buds but don’t want to waste any THC, you can extract the THC from the discarded trim.

What Can You Do With Cannabis Trim?

Using trim means no waste; there are many things that you can do with cannabis trim. Here are some of the popular uses of cannabis trim:

One of the most popular uses for trim is to make edibles. There is no need to keep the fan leaves, but the sugar leaves are covered in trichomes/THC, so they can be used to make cannabis butter and oil for edibles. You can also use it to make cannabutter, a type of cannabis-infused butter that you can use in various recipes.

The trimmed sugar leaves can also be used to make hash, a concentrated form of cannabis that can be smoked or vaporized. Hash is made by compressing the trichomes into a solid form. You can also use trim to make topicals; products applied to the skin.

Finally, cannabis trim can also be used to make CBD oils and other medicinal products. This is because the cannabinoids present in the trim are more concentrated than those found in the plant itself. By extracting these cannabinoids, manufacturers can create high-quality products offering a range of patient benefits.

Equipment Needed to Trim Cannabis

The equipment needed to trim cannabis plants is relatively simple and inexpensive. To trim your cannabis, you will need a few tools:
1. Pruning shears or sharp scissors– Are used to trim the leaves and buds from the stem of the cannabis plant. Commercial growers who need high throughput should utilize automated cannabis trimming machine and bucker first, then cannabis trimming scissors after the trimmed product leaves the conveyor.
2. Disposable gloves– To keep resin off hands.
3. Tray or bowl to catch sugar leaves. This can also save you time cleaning up after trimming. Collecting extra vegetation in a bucket or tray as you proceed eliminates the need to sweep and clean up after cutting. If you trim a lot of cannabis, you may consider purchasing a “trim tray.”
4. Strainer (optional but can make the process faster)- The strainer can be used to allow “keef” or “trichomes” to fall through and be separated for other use.
5. A clean surface like a table.

With the correct tools, you will be able to accomplish a better job, and the outcome will be of greater quality. Keep some rubbing alcohol ready to clean your shears regularly, especially when dealing with the stickiest of the nasty.

How to Set up Your Trimming Area

If you’re trimming cannabis, it’s important to have a well-organized trimming area. A large, clean table covered in plastic (cut up trash bags, etc.) on a non-carpeted floor works wonderfully for trimming! Even if you’re careful, trims and resins will get all over the place, so try to trim in an easy-to-clean area.

If you must work on your carpets, lay down a sheet or tarp to protect it from trichome stickiness. You can put on some entertainment while trimming; you can watch movies or TV shows in the background. Music or radio can also work perfectly.

Set out your trays because you’ll be needing them soon. You’ll use one tray for untrimmed buds, another for trimmed buds, and yet another for leaves/trim. If possible, keep everything separate; however, some spillage is unavoidable.

You will need to clean off scissors/pruning shears many times throughout the process because of resin buildup. Also, keep rubbing alcohol on your hands for quick cleaning.

Trimming buds emit a strong odor, especially if they are fresh! The odor is even stronger than it is during the flowering period. Using a fan to circulate the air and opening a window can help. Be careful opening windows if cannabis isn’t legal in your area.

How to Dry Trim Buds

Dry trimming is pruning cannabis buds after they have dried but before they have been cured. It is the most popular and less messy method of trimming weed.

You should cut all fan leaves before drying them and throw them away since they do not contain any THC. It is important to cut the fan leaves before drying because it is much harder to separate fan leaves from sugar leaves after drying.

It involves hanging freshly cut branches upside down in a drying room for 7 to 14 days until the optimal degree of moisture is obtained. Begin dry trimming after removing the fan leaves and drying the plant.

Then delicately trim the sugar leaves from each bud, starting at the bottom and work your way up while catching them in a tray. After removing the majority of the sugar leaves, the trimmed buds are placed into an airtight container like a mason jar and preserved until the active compounds inside the remaining trichomes reach their maximum level of flavor and strength. Put trimmed sugar leaves in a separate container for later use.

How to Wet Trim Buds

Wet trimming is the technique of pruning cannabis buds right after harvesting but before they dry. It is a messier method compared to dry trimming.

Just like in dry trimming, remove and discard fan leaves first. Now trim the sugar leaves the sugar leaves just like with dry trimming. After trimming, allow the buds to dry completely before putting them in jars to prevent mold.

Curing Cannabis After Trimming

After you’ve trimmed your cannabis, it’s important to cure it before smoking. Cannabis curing allows the newly trimmed and dried cannabis flowers to age in a controlled environment.

Curing allows the flowers to dry slowly and evenly while also allowing them to develop their full flavor and aroma potential. Curing helps to remove the harshness from the buds, and it also helps to improve the taste.

Curing typically takes place in a dark, cool, and humid environment. Open the container to allow the buds to dry out slightly every few days, and then replace the airtight lid. After a few weeks, your cannabis should be cured and ready to use. The most important factor in successful curing is to avoid any drastic changes in temperature or humidity, which can cause the flowers to dry too quickly or unevenly.

Once the flowers have cured to your desired level of consistency, they can be stored in an airtight container for use. If you plan on storing your cannabis for an extended period, it is important to ensure that the flowers are properly sealed to prevent moisture and mold from forming.


Trimming cannabis is the process of removing the fan and sugar leaves from your buds. Trimming buds is an important part of the weed-smoking experience. To get the best flavor and smell, you must learn how to trim properly.

The purpose of trimming is to remove the leaves not covered in trichomes, which are the tiny, hair-like structures containing the plant’s THC. Trimming also makes the buds look more aesthetically pleasing and can make them easier to smoke.

No matter what your reason is for trimming your weed, by following these simple steps, you can trim your weed like a pro! With a little practice, you’ll be able to trim your buds perfectly every time. Trimming weed is a simple process, but it takes time and patience. So grab your trimming scissors and get started! You’ll be glad you did.

After you’ve trimmed your bud, check out how to cure weed.

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Rocky Horton


Rocky Horton is an experienced cannabis grower and the founder of IndoGrow. The IndoGrow editorial team has over four decades of combined growing experience. Learn more.