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How to Choose the Best Hemp Buds

Written by Dorothy Watson

Identifying the best hemp buds of the highest quality is no easy task. Even diehard CBD connoisseurs struggle with it.

Even your most beloved strain can come from crops of varying qualities, which depend heavily on a myriad of environmental factors, such as cultivating conditions, harvesting practices, nutrient consumption, ventilation equipment, even curing techniques employed by the grower.

However, as with selecting the freshest, healthiest fruits and vegetables, there is always some degree of personal subjectivity when comparing best hemp buds with one another. When it comes to telling premium-grade hemp flowers apart from, say, catnip, though, there are several standards to know and factors to consider before parting with your money. These tips will help you choose the very best hemp buds:

Obvious Defects

The first thing to look for when scrutinizing hemp buds for quality are noticeable defects. Glaring issues likely indicate a serious problem, the kind that you really do not want in your buds. When we talk of bud defects, think of insect damage, discoloration, mildew, mold, or similar no-nos. Also, keep an eye out for seeds. Although seeds are common in mid to low-grade, there should be none in top-shelf buds.

Dull Coloring

Fresh buds are brightly colored. You want to see bright green tinged with purple, orange, white, or every color in the rainbow, and then some. However, you do not want to see dull colors, as they can indicate that buds are either of very low quality or not particularly fresh. If you see dull shades of green and brown, then you are not looking at premium-grade buds, but something of much lesser quality.

Bud Density

The density of buds is of paramount importance. The highest quality will have dense, heavy nugs, not sparse, light ones. You want to see more bud than leaves. If the flowers appear to wither, seem light and leafy, then they are likely of low-grade. When it comes to top-shelf, only thick buds will do. Having said that, in cannabis, Sativa strains are naturally less dense than Indicas, but they should still be “bushy.”

Green Gum High CBD Flower (empire wellness). One of July 2018 best selling hemp flowers.

Green Gum High CBD Flower (empire wellness). One of July 2018 best-selling hemp flowers.

Resin Coating

Look carefully at the coating, or lack thereof, of resin present on the buds. There should be a thick white, crystalline layer of trichomes covering the entire bud. This is where most of the goodness in flowers lies, as this resin is rich in terpenes, cannabinoids, flavonoids, and everything between. This is where you find the plant’s active flavors and molecules. If you see little to none, go and shop elsewhere.

Trimming Clues

You do not want your best hemp buds trimmed badly. No cultivator of top-shelf buds will be clumsy when it comes to trimming. If you mostly see leaves, as opposed to flowers, then you are likely holding low-grade buds. Having said that, however, you can find some of the best hemp buds with a small layer of leaves surrounding them, but they will be rich in trichomes and have a resinous coating.

Bud Smell

When it comes to the best hemp buds, you can smell quality. CBD Buds rich in terpenes will be very aromatic, and that is what you want. Flowers differs enormously in aroma and these differences can be extremely complex, incorporating smells that are harsh, like diesel fuel, spicy, sweet, floral, earthy, or skunky. All quality smells pungent, no matter its scent. Low-grade grabs nobody’s attention and just smells weak.

Bud Stickiness

If the store or grower allows you to handle CBD flowers that you are inspecting, then grab the opportunity and do so. The best hemp buds are so resinous that your fingers will feel sticky after touching it. You should not feel any dampness, and the buds should not feel dry or brittle to the touch. You want them sticky, and noticeably so. If there is no stickiness, then the buds are likely of the lowest possible grade.

Final Thoughts

It is important to bear in mind that no matter how fantastic the hemp you are looking at appears or smells, there is no exact way to tell, for sure, how the specific strain that you are scrutinizing will affect you, or even if it is acceptable quality by your personal standards. The only way to remove any doubt is to either sample it or take it to a laboratory for testing. This is why lab-tested products are essential.

*** This is a guest post, not approved or authorized by other than the writer himself ***

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About the author

Dorothy Watson

Dorothy Watson is a writer for Pot Valet, a leading California cannabis delivery company. He dedicates his time to educating as many as he can about the benefits of cannabis, and he advocates for its legalization worldwide.