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How To Clean Your Buds – A Beginner’s Guide to Bud Washing

bud washing

It may appear strange to soak your buds in buckets of water before drying, and the more you reckon about it, the more sense it makes. During the flowering stage, buds can accumulate various debris from dust to minute insect eggs. This article delves into the bud washing procedure.

Understanding bud washing

Bud washing is clearly what it sounds like: after harvest, you immerse your cannabis flowers in water to tidy them. Have you ever heard of this before? No need to be concerned; only a few people have. Despite the limited understanding, bud washing appears to rise, mainly in commercial operations. Why? Since sticky cannabis flowers attract dust, dirt, microbes, and various living and nonliving things that customers do not want to consume. Whether growing cannabis indoors or outdoors, buds can be contaminated. Whereas colas are more likely to collect dust indoors, growing cannabis outdoors creates a haven for mites and insect eggs. You can ensure that you’re only using clean by soaking your buds before processing.

Pros and cons of bud washing

Pros of bud washing

  1. Improves the bud’s taste – Bud washing allows a strain’s actual terpene profile to shine through without altering the mouth profile.
  2. Eliminates mites and their eggs – Cannabis flowers have many hiding places, and their resin coating allows things to stick to them easily. Bud washing aids in the removal of living things from the surface, like mites and insect eggs.
  3. Expels dust and soil – Dust and soil, even though they aren’t alive, aren’t desirable to consume. Washing your cannabis eliminates tiny particles that are not visible to the human eye.
  4. Eliminates chemical residues – It is always advised that people should grow cannabis naturally (organically) at home. However, when purchasing buds, you never know what horticultural practices were used to develop them. Bud washing will aid in the removal of any various harmful chemicals.

Cons of cannabis washing

  1. Encourages excessive moisture – Cleansing your cannabis plants coats them with moisture and makes them susceptible to mold if not dried properly.
  2. Extends the drying time – Soaking your buds will cause them to dry more slowly. You’ll need to be tolerant and leave them for a long enough period for all of the moisture to evaporate.
  3. You cannot remove fungal infections – Even though bud washing is efficient at eliminating particles, it does not remove bacterial diseases that physically enter plant cells. Never consume cannabis that has visible indications of infection, like powdery mildew.

Different types of bud washing

Reverse osmosis water

When washing your buds, using the cleanest water possible makes sense. While soaking your flowers in tap water will help remove debris, it will also expose them to chemicals like chlorine and fluoride. Water is filtered using reverse osmosis by passing it through a semipermeable membrane, which removes unwanted molecules in the process. When feasible, we highly urge using reverse osmosis during bud washing.

Lemon and baking soda

Lemon and baking soda may appear to be an unusual mixture, but the two are used for various purposes. Lemons’ acidity and baking soda’s alkalinity combine to make a useful natural cleaning product for scrubbing surfaces and deodorizing spills. Including this in your bud washing method will aid in further purifying your flowers without the use of chemical additives.

Using diluted hydrogen peroxide

What about washing buds in peroxide and baking soda? Hydrogen peroxide is commonly found in residential products, but many gardeners use it to clean their buds after harvest. The chemical has antimicrobial qualities and, in low concentrations, can aid in the elimination of enduring microbes like bacteria.

How to wash your cannabis buds

Continue reading for instructions on cleaning your buds of debris. Here is a step-by-step procedure;


  • Three times clean 5 gallons (19-liter) buckets
  • 12 gallons (45 liters) of cold water (reverse osmosis if possible)
  • 1/4 cup lemon juice (approximately)
  • 1/4 cup bicarbonate of soda

Phase one: Establish the production line

Arrange your buckets in a production line fashion. Bucket 1 will hold the cleaning solution, while Bucket 2 will be the first rinsing station, and Bucket 3 will be the second rinsing station.

Phase two: Fill the buckets

Fill each 5-gallon bucket halfway with reverse osmosis water (4 gallons/15 liters). This amount is deep enough to dip and wash entire branches at once without the risk of pouring water everywhere. When bucket 1 is complete, add 1/4 cup lemon juice and 1/4 cup baking soda and comprehensively stir.

Phase three: The first dip

Take a bud-bearing branch and gently dip it into the solution in bucket 1. For about 30 seconds, gently stir and swirl the branch around the bucket.

Phase four: Begin by rinsing

You should then move the branch down the production line to bucket two. Submerge it in the water and move it around for another 30 seconds. This bucket will aid in the removal of any remaining debris as well as the initial solution.

Phase five: Do a second rinse

Bucket 3 satisfies as the last rinse to eliminate any stains and contaminants because bucket two will collect dirt particles and the solution. Stir slowly for 30 seconds more. Then, take each bud off the branch and place it in a herb dryer, or hang the whole branches from a drying line.

Phase six: Begin drying

Continue drying your cannabis as usual. Put your washed content in a dark, well-ventilated room with 45–55% relative humidity. Begin the curing process after about 12 days to enhance the buds even more.

Water Curing vs. Bud Washing

What is the difference between bud washing and water curing? Both entail water, but they serve different purposes. Watering curing only seeks to improve the cannabis flowers, whereas bud washing mainly cleans them. Water curing aids in the curing process by removing water-soluble irritants that detract from the taste. However, you can use both methods simultaneously; bud washing beforehand will keep your flowers from bathing in their sludge during the water curing procedure.

At first glance, bud washing appears ambiguous and even harmful. However, after gaining knowledge about the idea, it doesn’t take long to make complete sense. We wash fruits and vegetables before eating them, so why not wash buds before consuming them? Bud washing does mean a slightly longer drying time, but it pays off in clean flowers. Still don’t believe us? After finishing the task, look at the bottom of the containers.

Picture of Ed Rushford

Ed Rushford

Ed Rushford’s impact on cannabis growing is undeniable. Though he tends to focus primarily on 2 areas, plant training techniques and dealing with disease, pests, and other problems, he has offered many insights into how cannabis plants live and grow. That’s not to say that Ed is unfamiliar with the complete life cycle of cannabis, from seed to harvest, but he uses his widespread knowledge to hone in on the minutia and niche areas of growing cannabis. Ed’s goal is to spread knowledge and allow for everyone to become better growers. About this Author

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