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To survive as a successful stoner, there are a few things you must know, and one of the most essential things to do is learn how to keep weed fresh.
There’s nothing worse than getting a bag of that sticky-icky just to have it dry out and lose its freshness in the span of just a few days. Even though dry weed (and even stale weed) isn’t any less potent than fresh weed, it can severely impact the smoking experience. But there are more important factors at play, such as the integrity of the trichomes within your marijuana, that are dependent on you knowing how to keep your weed fresh as well as how to store marijuana properly.
Thankfully, there are a lot of ways to keep your weed fresh for longer. We’re here to teach you how to keep weed from drying out, how to keep marijuana fresh, and how to store marijuana.
How Long Can You Store Weed?
Proper cannabis storage is the most significant factor in how long weed will last. The longevity of your weed depends entirely on you knowing how to store marijuana the right way. For example, weed that’s left in containers that are open to the air––such as plastic baggies or miscellaneous plastic containers with loose lids––will ‘go bad’ much faster than weed that’s stored correctly.
The most important factors that go into proper weed storage include:
Temperature. You want to keep your weed someplace that’s room temperature at most, so the ideal temperature for cannabis storage is somewhere around 70 degrees F (21 degrees C), give or take a few degrees. You can go cooler than that with no problem (anything above freezing), but make sure not to store it in places over 77 degrees F (25 degrees C). Excess heat can damage your buds by drying them out and exposing them to high levels of humidity, which is the death of all good weed.
Humidity. While sticky weed is good, moist weed is not. Some people want to know how to keep their weed moist, but you don’t actually want your weed to be damp or moist at all. When cannabis is exposed to high levels of humidity, it can become a breeding ground for mold, mildew, and other bacteria that you definitely do not want in your weed. As a general rule, you’ll want to keep your weed at a humidity level of 65% or less. Having mold live inside something that you intend to inhale is super dangerous, as inhaling mold can be highly toxic and can lead to severe lung infections, fungal infections, and in extreme cases, even death. (Disclaimer: If you believe you’ve directly inhaled mold from your marijuana, please seek medical attention immediately.)
Exposure to sunlight. Prolonged exposure to sunlight is the quickest way to break down the quality of almost anything you’re trying to store. For example, there’s a reason many beers and other bottled beverages are stored in brown bottles––when exposed to too much sunlight, the alcohol in the beers will begin to break down, which will ultimately make them lose their potency. The same thing applies to weed––prolonged exposure to sunlight will cause the trichomes to break down, severely compromising the quality and potency of your cannabis.
Exposure to air. One of the easiest things you can do to preserve the freshness of your weed is to keep it away from open air. Oxidation is a common chemical reaction that occurs to organic materials when they’re exposed to oxygen. Often, this results in things going stale. Exposure to the air will dry out your weed quickly, and if you leave it out for too long, it can go completely stale. And again, while stale weed isn’t any less potent in terms of THC, it can make the taste, smell, or smoking experience less pleasant than fresh bud.
If you avoid all of those things that compromise the freshness of your weed, properly stored marijuana can last safely up to 2 years. There have been cases of people smoking older weed, and as long as it hasn’t been exposed to the air, it may be safe to do. If you found a super old stash, you can try smoking it; just always make sure to check it out for any irregularities in the way it looks or the way it smells. If it looks or smells funny, don’t smoke it. If it looks and smells like regular weed, feel free to enjoy the gift from the past.
Best Way to Store Marijuana
Now that you know how to keep your marijuana fresh, you need to decide what kind of vessel you want to store your weed in. Of course, we already know it’s best to keep your cannabis storage cool, airtight, and away from direct sunlight, but thankfully you have some options in terms of what you want to store your weed in.
Some of the best containers to store your weed in to help keep it fresh include:
Mason jars. Mason jars are easily the most popular storage vessel for the average stoner because they’re cheap, reusable, washable, airtight, and sustainable. But be warned: since mason jars are clear, they will not protect your weed from sunlight. If you can’t find a dark glass jar, just make sure to keep your mason jar in a cool, dark place.
Pill bottles. Pill bottles are little mini air-tight containers, and every seasoned stoner knows they’re the perfect way to store a couple of grams of bud. Pill bottles are meant to keep their contents safe, dry, and away from contaminants, so they work perfectly for storing small amounts of weed. Pill bottles will work well if you’re looking to keep a couple of grams fresh, but what if you need to know how to keep an ounce fresh? (Or even more?)
Vacuum sealing. Vacuum sealing is designed to keep things as fresh as possible for as long as possible, and thankfully, it works well with weed too. If you need to know how to keep an ounce fresh, you can always vacuum seal it. (Bonus points for also being smell-proof!)
Humidor boxes. Cannabis humidor boxes are by far the best way to keep your weed the freshest for the longest, but they are a significant investment. Humidor boxes are like perfectly curated ecosystems for bud storage, keeping the temperature, humidity, and light exposure all at the perfect levels. However, for dedicated stoners or people who store large amounts of bud, cannabis humidor boxes are worth it.
It’s important to know what to do when it comes to cannabis storage, but there are also a few things you should NOT be doing when it comes to cannabis storage. Here are a few things you should avoid doing when it comes to storing your weed:
Freeze it or refrigerate it. Although freezing or refrigerating your weed may seem like a good idea since it’s such a common way to preserve freshness in other things, it will actually do the opposite in this situation. Freezers and refrigerators are prone to high levels of humidity, which we already know is dangerous. But it will also compromise the taste and texture of your weed since it will lock in any existing moisture that’s in the bud. Depending on how much moisture was in the bud before freezing or refrigerating, it may be utterly unsmokable once it thaws out. (Think of trying to smoke soaking wet weed––it just doesn’t work!)
Put any other organic matter in with your weed. Some people like to do things like adding lemon or orange peel to their stored weed will infuse it with the scent and flavor, but we don’t recommend it. While doing that may seem like it would have a nice effect on your smoking experience, it’s actually dangerous to do. Most rinds still retain a lot of moisture, and as we’ve learned, all organic matter is prone to molding and decomposing when exposed to moisture. So when you add something foreign to your cannabis storage, you run the risk of adding something to your weed that will spread mold to your weed.
Keep it in a plastic baggie. Besides the fact that plastic baggies do little to nothing in terms of keeping your weed fresh, they can actually pose other threats as well, especially if you’re talking long-term storage. Plastic can break down over time and leak toxic chemicals into anything coming into direct contact with it. (The same reason they tell you not to store plastic water bottles in the car!)
Although it seems like there’s a dizzying amount of do’s and don’ts when it comes to cannabis storage, it’s pretty simple as long as you remember the basics: keep your weed in a cool, dry place, away from direct sunlight, and in an airtight container. As long as you stick to those simple rules, you should be able to keep your weed fresh for as long as you need!
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