Getting more from your Cannabis: Hashish - Growers Choice Seeds

How To Make Hash

marijuana make your own hash
Hash is a concentrated cannabis product made from resin.

Every cannabis grower knows they can harvest buds or flowers from their crop, which can be smoked, vaporized, applied or eaten for medicinal benefits and recreational relaxation.

They know the quality, size, and potency of that harvest depends on numerous factors such as the growing environment, the length of the vegetative and flowering stages, and the type of cannabis they planted in the first place.

But did you know you can actually get a secondary harvest of hash from that same crop, without sacrificing the bud yield?

What Is Hash?

By using leaf trimmings (and even some of your lower quality buds), you can produce a considerable amount of hash from any cannabis crop.

Hash – or hashish – is comprised completely of the resinous trichomes that cover the bud sites and surrounding leaves of the cannabis plant. This resin is extracted from the plant, leaving behind a mass of these sticky crystals.

Those crystals are where the ingested buds get most of their cannabinoid potency – the THC, CBD and other compounds that develop in every cannabis plant. There’s a reason growers are cautioned during harvest and drying to be very gentle with the buds: if those crystals flake off, you’re giving up a good deal of the medicinal or recreational benefit of your marijuana.

So how do you go about making hash, and getting the most out of your cannabis harvest?

make your own marijuana resin
Hash can be made from the leaves and unused buds of the cannabis plant.

The Marijuana Drying and Curing Period

There are two primary ways a grower might choose to dry their cannabis, after harvesting the stalks. Some may hang the entire cuttings (stalk, leaves, buds and all) upside down, while others remove the buds from the plant and dry them on their own – usually on shelves of screens.

Whichever method you prefer, the first step to getting a decent hash crop is saving and drying the leaves (other than the larger fan leaves) and trimmings (those “sugar” leaves around the bud site that you may have cut away), in addition to the buds. Depending on space, this may mean hanging the entire plant is more practical, rather than filling screen after screen with single layers of plant pieces.

When drying, keep in mind that leaves may take longer to dry completely than buds, due to their moisture-rich veins. The leaves can be considered ready for hash production when they look dry, but don’t yet crumble at the touch.

Read More: Drying and curing cannabis buds

marijuana resin hashish
Choosing the most resinous trimmings for your hash will ensure a potent end product.

Separating Cannabis Trimmings for Hash

Once the leaves and trimmings are dried, they need to be separated into two piles: those with a lot of resin, and those without. You could just use all the non-bud parts to make your hash, but you’re more likely to end up with a diluted yield.

Ideally, you will select the most trichome-rich pieces and leave out the rest. Hold on before you toss those less resinous pieces, though – cannabis connoisseurs have lots of great suggestions for making the most of the entire plant, and we’d love to hear your ideas!

Collecting the Resin to Make Hash

Now that you’ve built a nice pile of resin-rich leaves, you can get to work extracting the pure trichomes (resin) from them. Since they’re what give you the hash, you want to preserve as much as you can.

There are a number of different ways to do this, but this article will focus on the methods that don’t require specialty equipment.

flat screen method making hash
Shaking trimmings and buds on a mesh screen can help separate the resin from the other plant matter.

Flat Screening

Resin can be removed from the dried trimmings by agitating the leaves on a screen, and catching what falls off.

To do this, place the trimming on a sieve or fine mesh and shake or vibrate it. The dried crystals will flake off and fall through the holes.

This method does not produce pure hash, as some tiny leaf bits will inevitably fall through as well, but it is a quick and inexpensive method.

Some growers suggest storing dried leaf material in the freezer overnight before beginning extraction. In fact, carrying out the entire procedure in a cold room can make the crystals break free more readily.

marijuana hash hand rolling
Rolling buds and trimmings in your hands is the simplest but most time-consuming method.

Hand Rolling

The easiest and cheapest method, hand rolling is also the most time consuming.

A few pieces of the dried plant material is rolled between (clean) palms. As the crystals flake off and soften from the body heat, they form a black film on the hands, which thickens as the rolling continues. This film is pure hash, and can be rolled into any shape once removed.

Blender Method

The blender method works because the resin on the cannabis leaves is heavier than the dried plant parts. To use this method, place the dried, resinous leaves in a blender, along with water and some ice. Run the blender until the plant parts have been thoroughly masticated.

After letting the blended mixture calm, drain off some of the liquid (about two-thirds) and allow the remaining water/cannabis mixture to settle for about half an hour. The resin should sink to the bottom, allowing you to drain off more of the liquid. At this point you may choose to add more ice and allow the mixture to settle again.

Finally, strain the mixture through a coffee filter or very fine mesh. What remains in the filter is the hash.

Read More: How to harvest your cannabis plants

Tips and Facts About Hash

  • In general, you should get approximately the same amount – by weight – of dried leaf trimmings for hash as you do dried buds.
  • The total weight of the hash will be about 10% the weight of the leaf trimmings used. Naturally, more resinous strains such as White Widow will produce more trichomes and therefore more hash.
  • Outdoor-grown cannabis will often have fewer useable trimmings. Avoid the temptation to add more low-resin leaves to your harvest, however, as this will only dilute your hash.
  • If you end up with a poor quality bud harvest, consider adding the buds to your leaf trimmings when making hash. You may not get many buds from that crop, but you could end up with more hash. Because the plant parts aren’t in the hash, you won’t have to deal with the unappealing flavour or scent of a bad batch. (Note: if using buds, be sure to break them up prior to removing the resin; this makes the crystals easier to get to.)
  • Because hash is simply made up of concentrated trichomes – the same compounds you ingest when smoking or vaporizing marijuana – it has similar medical benefits to marijuana.

And Most Importantly:

  • Hash can have up to 40% THC, compared to the usual 28% maximum found in very potent buds. This is due to the extreme concentration of the trichomes. It is vital to keep this in mind when determining dosages for ingestion.

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