You can harvest your plant by either cutting the entire plant down at once, cutting the stems down one by one while keeping the buds attached to them, or by removing the individual buds from your plant. Keeping the entire plant intact or keeping the buds attached to the stems facilitates more even drying, and you will need to add 2-3 days to the drying process. Harvesting each bud off the plant, on the other hand, allows for easier trimming since you will only have to handle one bud at a time but require more careful handling during the trimming process.
Trimming increases the overall percentage of cannabinoids on a bud by removing the plant material that has a lower amount of cannabinoids. These are the leaves that poke out which, while having some trichomes and cannabinoids on them, do not nearly have the concentration of cannabinoids as that of the bud itself. This step is optional though and is completely up to you based on what you want to do with the finished product. Trimming can also be done before or after the plant has dried. By trimming before the plant has dried, you have better access to the leaves as they are still robust in shape, allowing for more accurate removal of unwanted plant material. Waiting until after the plant has dried will restrict the amount of space you have to trim the inner leaves as they shrivel, but the outer leaves will be easier to remove.
To quickly and efficiently trim individual buds, we recommend using a bud bowl trimmer. Remove any fan leaves before placing your buds on the lining floor of the trimmer. Put on the cover and rotate the bud bowl trimmer 15-20 times, or when the buds appear well-groomed before taking them out. Bud bowl trimmers work best with wet buds but will also work with dried buds.
If you choose to trim by hand, you will want to do so with the buds upside down as this gives more access to the base of the leaves. From there, inspect the leaves that are ingrained deep inside of the buds. You can first try to pull down gently on the leaves to see if you access their base. If so, try to cut it at the base so you can get everything at once. If the buds are blocking the base, trim each leaf separately as close as possible without cutting off anything else. Finally, you may trim off any rough edges poking out of the bud to achieve a more uniform look.