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What You Can Learn About Your Cannabis By Studying The Ash And Soot

This article originally appeared on and has been republished with permission.

Seasoned cannabis users can talk in detail about the many ways you can determine the quality of your cannabis by various factors.

The most common aspects of weed that people look at are the buds and how it smells, but a lesser known aspect is the ash it produces. This is one thing that can tell you a lot about how to clean cannabis is.

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In this article, we are going to cover the different colors that marijuana ash produces when vaporized and how certain stages in the growing process can affect it.


Many cannabis connoisseurs argue that when marijuana produces white ash, it is because the cannabis has been flushed out before harvest.

Rinsing is done by some growers when the plant approaching the culmination of the growth process. During this practice, the plants are only given clean water for about the last week or so. When growth Using hydroponic systems, water is usually mixed with concentrations of nutrients or other elements such as salt, which affect the pH of the soil. When there is a build-up of minerals, whether in hydroponic cannabis growing systems or in soil, it can lead to nutrient burn-off. Symptoms of nutrient burn are yellowing or curled leaves, although chemicals and nutrients can also build up in smaller amounts that are not evident until you take your first puff of the lye. ‘grass.

However, when cannabis makes a crackle, it may be a sign that excess nutrients have built up in the plant. It could also be that the hardening process was not done correctly.

The rinsing is primarily done to enhance the flavor of the cannabis plant, but it is quite expensive to do so. If the cannabis has not been rinsed off well, it can contribute to dark or black ash.

Not all growers empty their cannabis, but professional growers know this is a key process for growing quality cannabis.


Others believe that hardening affects ash. This process, which takes place in food and not just in cannabis, means that the plant material is ready to be stored for long periods of time. With cannabis, plants are cured by letting them dry out or letting them sit for up to 2 weeks. Once the growers notice that most of the moisture is gone, the cannabis buds are then stored in an airtight container for around 6 weeks.

cannabis marijuana crops
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When the cannabis is dried during this time, any excess moisture is retained in the container. All gases can be released during the intervals. This will allow the bacteria to get rid of any residual compounds that could affect the final flavor.

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Many growers believe that drying plays an important role in the overall sweetness and flavor, and that it also affects the quality of your smoke.

Other best growing practices for better ash

For growers to improve the smokability of cannabis, there are other things you can do while growing it.

  1. Turn off grow lights a few days before harvest: rapidly decreasing chlorophyll content before harvest, especially in the last 2 days, decreases starch and sugar content to improve smokability, which gives a whiter ash.
  2. Reduce the temperature during the last few weeks of her flowering cycle: lower temperatures while enhancing purple colors, especially for strains that are genetically predisposed to them. Studies show that this will also degrade chlorophyll, but will also ensure that moisture is removed, which can be difficult with lower temperatures.

Ash color

If you really want to see how clean your cannabis is, smoke it.

Then observe the ashes. If the ashy color is that of a darker gray or black, it could mean that there were unwanted compounds or even minerals in the cannabis you consumed. But if the color of the ash is white or light gray, then the consensus is that cannabis is very clean.

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If the ash turned black or dark gray, it could mean that this cannabis was not processed or rinsed properly. When the growth process leaves unwanted minerals and sugars due to improper hardening, the smoker may observe a burning sensation in the throat as well as dark ash.

marijuana laptop
Photo by Jose Luque / EyeEm / Getty Images

Other aspects to watch out for

Besides the color of the ash, there are other things you can observe while smoking your cannabis.

One is texture; good quality, clean cannabis has a delicate and light texture. If it was harvested with leftover fertilizer, fungicide or pesticide residue, the ash will become hard and grainy. Generally speaking, you want the ash to be like a fine powder. You can test this by taking a few puffs to see if it will produce ash for you to examine, then take note of the texture at different times during the smoking of the joint in order to get more accurate results.

RELATED: Is Growing Marijuana Really That Bad For The Environment?

You can also use your senses to learn more about the quality of your weed. Visually, watch out for mold at all times. If the cannabis shows signs of mold, throw it away immediately and don’t even consider cutting it and then smoking it. Additionally, avoid consuming cannabis that is brownish or yellowish in color.

Use your nose too: Cannabis always has a very specific smell that you will be able to identify better the more you use cannabis. Always avoid cannabis that smells like grass or hay.


Learning the many ways to identify better cannabis is a great way to start to get to know the plant better. This especially helps if you eventually want to learn how to grow your own cannabis.

This article originally appeared on and has been republished with permission.

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