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Trimming cannabis is an important step in preparing harvested plants to showcase the overall quality of the bud and trim away excess material. Cannabis trimming may be done by hand, which is preferred, but may also be done with a machine. 

Why Cannabis Trimming Is Important 

When you trim cannabis, excess or unnecessary plant material is removed. For the most part, this means trimming away the sugar leaves or fan leaves so that what remains is the nicely shaped bud. By trimming away these leaves, the parts of the plant with the higher chlorophyll content are removed. Therefore, the bud can have a cleaner, less bitter taste.

Further, sugar leaves on cannabis are not really densely concentrated with valuable plant constituents like THC (tetrahydrocannabinol) or CBD (cannabidiol). Therefore, some growers trim away this material so the overall density of cannabinoid concentrations in the final buds is enhanced. 

Cannabis trimming also highlights the bud itself on the plant. With the excess foliage still in place, the bud is harder to see. Trimming away the mostly unnecessary parts of the plant puts the star of the show, the bud, on full display. 

When Cannabis Is Trimmed 

Cannabis trimming is most often done after curing, which is known as “dry trimming.”. However, some cultivators prefer to do trimming before the plant is cured, which is referred to as “wet trimming.” If trimming is done before curing, the excess material is cut away immediately as the plant is harvested, and before it goes to a curing room. If the plants are trimmed after curing, plants are trimmed as they are pulled from curing racks. 

Wet trimming can be considered preferable because trichomes may not be damaged as extensively as they would when trimming dry, but trimming wet also means less material goes to the cure room. Therefore, the plants take up less space while curing, and there is less moisture-containing foliage present, which can make drying times less.

Related Glossary Terms for Cannabis Trimming 

Take a look at a few glossary terms related to trimming cannabis: 

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