10.6.2020 | Oh No, My Buds Dried Out!

Welcome back to the Red Bench – it’s Tuesday and let me tell you about an experience I had last night with one of my old favorite strains – Master Kush.

I’ve smoked a lot of Master Kush in my day. It was a regular strain at the collectives I took photos for back in Long Beach around 2009-2010.

It has a distinct Kush flavor that always hit me right, so when I saw a package of Master Kush by High Garden on the menu at Desert’s Finest, I immediately added it to my shopping list…

That was back in August when I picked up this box, and I suppose the herb was fresh then.

The box sat around as I kept pushing back the date to do a video review and August turned into September which rolled into October and here we are, and you know what happened in the meantime? The herb dried out!

Apparently three months is too long to keep herb packaged in a flavor-seal bag. Bummer.


So, what do you do when your herb has dried out?

First off – put the herb in a glass jar if it isn’t already. Plastic bags are bad for herb in several ways, including NOT keeping your cannabis as fresh as possible.

Second off – the slightly bad news – you can’t bring dry herb back to the same level it was when it was freshly cured once it dries out. There are already chemical changes going on to the trichomes and the THC levels. But you can add moisture back to the buds to make the smoking experience smoother and more flavorful. And that’s what I’m going to try and do…

To re-hydrate the buds I use the lettuce leaf method. This involves placing a small piece of lettuce leaf in the jar with the dry herb and let it sit for a few hours. The lettuce leaf won’t change the flavor of the herb. The moisture transfers from the leaf to the herb, slowly re-hydrating the buds. I usually open the jar a few times during the process to move the buds around.

In the past I’ve also used a small piece of paper towel, slightly moistened (not wet) and placed it in the jar on top of the herb. The paper towel method has to be monitored carefully so you don’t get the buds wet… you just want the ambient humidity in the jar to rise. Now I use lettuce leaves because it works better.

After a few hours into the re-hydration process I check the buds. Usually those nearest the lettuce leaf or paper towel will be starting to get their moisture back while those further away in the jar will still be dry. If this is the case, you need a bit more time… but don’t let the buds soak up too much moisture. This will make them hard to burn and harsh on the throat.

Right now my Master Kush nugs have been re-hydrating with a lettuce leaf for over two hours and I’m still waiting…. so while we wait I’ll tell you about this popular strain.

Master Kush

This strain was developed by the Dutch White Label Seed Company in Amsterdam and was originally called High Rise. This is a strongly Indica-leaning strain that has been around for years and back in the day (1992-93) it was a Cannabis Cup winner. It is known to be an upbeat herb, despite being an Indica, with focused attention.

Every time I’ve encountered this strain I’ve been amazed at the real “Kush” smell the nugs had. Kush is a flavor all it’s own and you’ll encounter it in strains like Hash Plant, Hindu Kush or Hashbar OG. Hindu Kush is part of the lineage of Master Kush so I always expect that Kush aroma to show up.

Three hours into re-hydrating and that Kush smell hasn’t shown up. These nugs are giving off a peppery, lemon, mint smell, but a mint that reminds me of some homegrown Thai buds I had ten years back. Tania said it reminded her of the smell of these lemon-mint drinks she gets at a Jordanian Kabob restaurant by her work.

A Sesh With Re-Hydrated Buds

Well, my patience only goes so far, so let’s get into the most re-hydrated nug.

The nug cut up like a dry, partially re-hydrated nug. 🙁 Moist enough on the outside but dry inside. These really need to sit overnight after I take the lettuce out of the jar. I think I’ll remove it from the jar now and let the moisture begin to equalize.

So, at this point I loaded up the bong with the somewhat re-hydrated Master Kush and had myself a sesh…

Ten minutes later… I’m having a little trouble typing. I only took a handful of hits (the creeper effect fooled me into taking a few extra hits) and boy, did that stone me. My fingers are stumbling all over the keyboard right now. Thank God for editing!

Oh my, I’m glad I’m not driving a car at this moment, or operating heavy machinery!

Soon the high seriously turned to stoned, lacking the upbeat feeling I expected. Within an hour I was tucked cozy in bed drifting off to dreamland and had a great sleep.

Morning Sesh

This morning the moisture added to the jar has spread to all the nugs and they are looking real nice. The Kush smell I expected hasn’t shown up but the herb now has a pleasant sweet, floral, spicy, peppery, minty aroma when you open the jar.

When I just cut up a nug the nice cure is back, at least 80% of the way. When my scissors cut through the nug there was just a touch of dryness – a big improvement over last night. I noticed some hints of purple in the bud. I love purple buds.

The flavor is back! A real delight to smoke.

The first hit put my eyes in lidded mode and I quickly jumped into a second hit. By the third hit I was an “operating” level – that’s when the herb is just teasing the synapses in the brain, and I’m ready to get started on the day’s projects.

Of course, I had to take a couple extra rips – just to see where this one would go now… and this one leads to Sleepy Land… I have an extremely mellow stone going right now, so an extra cup of coffee is going to be in order if I expect to get anything done in the next few hours.

I’m going to consider this re-hydration a success! The herb is restored to nicely smoke-able. Unfortunately, when herb does degrade, it tends to become a more sleepy herb. I think this one has gone that way, so I’ll be saving this (in a glass jar) for late nights when I’m ready to have that last bowl of the evening.

Until later, best of health.

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