Part 2 – Home Grow – Curing

Home growers aren’t working with the large production volume that commercial growers are, and this gives them more flexibility in their cultivation, drying and curing process.  Home growers are much like small wine makers and have the opportunity to experiment with the entire cultivation process creating a product that is uniquely theirs.  Like commercial growers, home growers do have access to a wide variety of seed strains, nutrients, and hydroponic grow equipment that all impact the final product. However, the one step that is often overlooked by home growers is the curing process. When done properly, curing has a huge impact on the final product’s taste, character and smokeability.

Think of curing as the final aging process, like that of a fine wine.  The product needs to be maintained at both an ideal temperature of about 65 to 70 degrees and a humidity level of approximately 63% R.H. to cure properly.  However, unlike wine, the product needs to be exposed to air on a regular and controlled basis to properly cure and avoid mold build-up.  This is called “burping”.

The best way to ensure a proper cure is as follows:

  • Ensure you start with a product that has gone through proper drying. Depending on what the outside relative humidity is in your area, you will typically dry for anywhere from a few days to a few weeks.  But most important, the product needs to have adequate moisture content remaining to cure properly….so don’t dry to long.
  • Next selecting the correct curing container. The typical home grower will be using either 32 or 64 oz Mason Jars, or a standard 5 gallon bucket to cure in.  Select the container ensuring that the product does not fill more than ½ your container, so that you have adequate air flow.
  • Place the Curecork automated curing system on top of your container. After programing the Curecork to your selected cuing cycle and humidity threshold, you can leave your container unattended for your entire curing cycle.  The Curecork will monitor temperature and humidity and will aerate or “burp” your container automatically, ensuring that proper humidity level is maintained.  Do this for about 4 to 6 weeks and you’ll see the difference a proper cure makes!

So feel free to experiment.