Marijuana Business Magazine - March 2018

Honing Your D espite the availability of large machine trimmers, many growers prefer to trim their cannabis by hand, using pruners, shears or scissors. Hand trimming – which most growers say results in better quality flower than machine trimming – may seem like straightforward work, snipping leaves wrapped around cannabis flowers. But multiple factors determine a good trim job, including: • Drying and regulating the moisture within plants. • The particular strains being trimmed. • Knowledge of consumer preferences. • How managers regulate their trim- mers’ workloads. Hand trimming differs from pruning, when growers cut plants to enhance growth and cannabinoid production. Instead, hand trimming is a craft that requires observation, persistence and nuance for the best results. It is one of the most important procedures in the cannabis production chain. Trimmers are “the last people to touch the product before it goes to the customer,” said Jesse Peters, CEO and chief grower at Eco Firma Farms in Oregon. “What they do is extremely important.” Here are tips for how to achieve an expert trim job. Wet Versus Dry When Peters started growing can- nabis two decades ago, he’d harvest plants, hang them upside down whole and start trimming immediately while the leaves were still wet.The advan- tage of trimming plants when wet: The leaves are vibrant and stick out and away from the flowers, making them easier to cut versus when the plants have been dried. You also get your product to market more quickly by eliminating the one- to two-week drying period. Dry trimming, however, has critical advantages. And while dry trimming is more challenging than wet trimming, it’s not as burdensome as one might think and shouldn’t necessarily be discarded. By Omar Sacirbey Two cultivation gurus share tips on how to give your plants a first-class trim job The big disadvantage to wet trimming is that the THC-packed trichomes and calyxes on flowers and leaves – the most valuable part of the plant – get knocked off in the process, degrading the value of the final product. But with dry trimming, those trichomes are better preserved, said Peters, who now dries his plants before trimming them. Peters initially thought dry trimming was tough because the first few times he tried it he let the plant dry only overnight. The result was a plant that looked droopy and leaves that would wrap and curl around the flowers that trimmers needed to handle.That made the work hard and left Peters feeling it was not worthwhile. Trimming Skills 86 • Marijuana Business Magazine • March 2018