How do I properly dry and cure my harvest?
Keep the drying area dark, the air well circulated and exchanged with fans, the temperatures in the lower 70's and the humidity between 50-60% with a dehumidifier, if necessary. The bud will smoke smoother if it takes around a week for the moisture to evaporate, quicker drying will harshen the taste and degrade the burning properties.
After drying, any variety benefits from a slow cure. Curing involves atmospheric oxygen to metabolize cannabinnoids and terpenes into more desirable forms. After the harvest is dry enough to create a snapping sound when stems are bent, the material is placed in sealed glass containers. Once the oxygen is consumed within them, the process slows to a halt.
The jars should be opened and aired out once or twice every 24 hours. If you smoke a bud as soon as it is drys, it is nothing like it becomes after a nice slow dry and cure. The buds must remain dry with no moisture from inner stems still dispersing, kept out of direct light and the ambient temperature/humidity should be comfortable for humans. I usually vacuum seal and refrigerate after 3 weeks, but have extended the curing time to 5 weeks, if discernable improvements were still occuring. No bud should be smoked before its time.
Peeling stems is a much quicker way to dry the product. The first day of drying i would normally cut all fan leaves off and score the main stem with a sharp knife. Peeling the stem exposes the inside of the stem to air, cutting drying time by 20%. You can do this scoring ritual everyday for 5 days until all is dry.