September is the best time of year to harvest hemp. But beware of the method: there is a difference between harvesting by hand and with machinery
Hemp harvesting is a very delicate activity, and those in the trade know this well. So if you are here trying to understand how this is done precisely, you should bear in mind that certain factors can influence the result. A successful harvest depends on the type of cultivation, temperature, light and climate. In addition, you can choose between different methods depending on whether you need to harvest inflorescences or not.
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If you are looking for a quality product that fully complies with the strict Italian regulations on the consumption of CBD cannabis, there is a way, and it is not by growing it at home. If you want to know more, this article is for you.
When to harvest hemp
Harvesting hemp is a highly delicate process that requires a lot of labour and a lot of experience. Hemp is an annual plant, which means that in most cases, it takes about 90-120 days to go from seed to plant, while its shoots only flower once before dying until the next crop is planted. In addition, hemp is affected by seasonal changes, so when the days get shorter, the crop stops growing tall and starts producing flower buds instead. This is why the best time to harvest hemp is in September. Farmers should also keep an eye on the weather before choosing the right time to harvest hemp. We are talking about a robust plant, but it cannot survive frost or excessive rain. Bad weather will cause the branches of the plants to break and, if accompanied by excessive humidity, mould may form, especially on the larger flowers. Those who have opted for indoor growing know that, technically, the peak season can be ‘created’ and maintained by altering temperatures, lighting, humidity, etc. Also, in warmer climates, it is possible to get 2 shifts per year, which would mean doubling the productivity of the plants. The key is to test your product throughout its life cycle and create an ideal growing environment. Once you have identified the suitable period, let’s figure out how to harvest hemp.
Read also: Cannabis tanning
Let’s say from the outset that those who decide to harvest hemp for a living keep in mind some exact requirements, namely: the temperature must be 15-20° C (optimal condition); a change of air is needed every hour. If the aim is to extract and distil CBD oil, then the plants must go through the drying process. Remember that the buds can take between 1 and 12 days to dry, depending on their initial moisture content, size and density. Typically, this process can occur inside shipping containers where the plants are hung upside down, or the crop can be transported to a chamber used exclusively for curing/drying. That said, there are two options for harvesting hemp: by hand or with the aid of agricultural machinery. Let us look at both cases.
How (and why) hemp flowers are harvested by hand
Harvesting hemp by hand helps to protect the integrity of the flower. However, care should be taken during the process to ensure that the trichomes, terpenes, and pistils are not damaged. By mishandling the flowers, you risk significantly reducing their value on the open market. In addition, the manual harvesting of hemp is labour-intensive. Typically, tools such as machetes, shears or tobacco knives are used to cut the stems and carry the hemp to a wagon or trailer. Then, how to cut it depends on the drying method chosen:
- if the intention is to screen-dry the hemp, you will need to cut it into smaller sections so that it is easier to lay them out;
- If the intention is to hang it up, cut it into larger sections.
- Finally, if you prefer manual harvesting, you will need a lot of workforces.
Typically, 5-10 people can harvest one acre for about eight hours (we are talking about 2,000 plants).
Hemp biomass and harvesting with machines
Hemp biomass requires different harvesting processes than inflorescences. However, since the former is grown on an industrial scale for CBD and CBG extracts, it does not require as much care as the flowers. Therefore, farmers use industrial farming equipment such as combine harvesters to harvest acres of hemp quickly. By doing so, there will be less need for labour compared to the first method.
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If you want to know how to harvest hemp for personal use correctly, perhaps you’d do well to ask yourself another question. Is it really worth it? We have seen that it is anything but simple and requires commitment, dedication and manpower. This translates into costs that are difficult to bear compared to the purpose. Fortunately, Justbob allows you to purchase the highest quality CBD-based hemp with a very low THC content (less than 0.2%). In this way, you can shop safely and thoroughly comply with the law. CBD products are drug-free and totally safe, as the World Health Organisation (WHO) stated at a conference a few years ago. The property for which this substance is renowned is its relaxing effect.
Read also: Cannabis legalisation
This article was intended to explain how hemp harvesting takes place, the best time to start, depending on the type of cultivation you have chosen (indoor or outdoor), and how to harvest the inflorescences and the cannabis biomass.
All the information we have given you is valid for experienced cannabis growers who are aware of the regulations governing the cultivation of legal marijuana.
We are waiting for you in our CBD flower shop!