This method is particularly effective for folks who are starting out, those looking to maximize quality in a shorter period of time, and folks who's like to produce a connoisseur-quality product each and every time with no guesswork involved.
It's a very simple and effective process:
Cut the product, trim it per your preference, but don't dry it until the stems snap. Take it down while the stems still have some flex, but the product feel dry on the outside. This is a perfect opportunity to drop the dry-feeling flowers onto a screen and collect prime-quality kief that would otherwise get lost in the jar.
Jar the product, along with a Caliber III hygrometer. One can be had on Ebay for ~$20. Having tested a number of hygrometers - digital and analog - this model in particular produced consistent, accurate results. Then, watch the readings:
+70% RH - too wet, needs to sit outside the jar to dry for 12-24 hours, depending.
65-70% RH - the product is almost in the cure zone, if you will. It can be slowly brought to optimum RH by opening the lid for 2-4 hours.
60-65% RH - the stems snap, the product feels a bit sticky, and it is curing.
55-60% RH - at this point it can be stored for an extended period (3 months or more) without worrying about mold. The product will continue to cure.
Below 55% RH - the RH is too low for the curing process to take place. The product starts to feel brittle. Once you've hit this point, nothing will make it better. Adding moisture won't restart the curing process; it will just make the product wet. If you measure a RH below 55% don't panic. Read below:
Obviously, the product need time to sweat in the jar. As such, accurate readings won't be seen for ~24 hours, assuming the flowers are in the optimal cure zone. If you're curing the product for long-term storage, give the flowers 4-5 days for an accurate reading. If the product is sill very wet, a +70% RH reading will show within hours. If you see the RH rising ~1% per hour, keep a close eye on the product, as it's likely too moist.
Some well-worded and executed How-to using this technique from later in the thread:
Here's how I did it, doing my first dry/cure after reading this thread.
I cut the plants, and trimmed them. All of the drying was done in 45-55% RH and 70-75f. I hung them up in the cabinet I grew them in, lights off, with the ventilation still going. I had some inner air circulation fans during the grow but I turned them off for the dry. They were hanging up for 3-4 days and the outsides of the buds were feeling dried out, but the stems weren't quite snapping yet.
This is when I stripped the buds off the main stem and put them into jars. The humidity eventually rose to 65-72% so I took the tops off and let them sit. They quickly lowered to the ambient RH, around 55% () I then put the lids back on, and I've been doing this for a couple days now, and they're slowly stabilizing, and I'm extremely confident this will be a great cure. Once they're stable I'll be uploading a screenshot of a spreadsheet I've been tracking the humidity in the jars with, hopefully someone will find it useful/informative.
Another example from Chits:
Just finished reading all the way through. Took a couple weeks. Presently trying this method and results good very good (so far).
Thank you Simon and so many others that made some really good suggestions to go along with it.
Maybe this will help someone, so I'll add my $0.02
Started drying about a week ago. Finally had it down to 68% (not stabil though) in the jars, but was not comfortable with it at that point. Looking for around 62%.
Presently we are into a week+ of damp / rainy weather. Ambient air is high 80 to mid-upper 90% RH. a little high for here, but not unusual.
How to get the jar below ambient was a issue for me. So I came up with a test.
1 gal. glass jar
1 lb. white rice
1 qt. jar of bud
2 paper lunch bags.
In the oven at 250 degrees for 45 min. to a hour with the paper lunch bags and rice. Idea is to dry it out as completely as possible.
Once out of the oven, Place bags and rice in gal. jar (loosely capped) to cool.
Okay, now fairly quickly remove contents from jar. Open 1 bag and add rice. Stand it up in the gal. jar. In other bag pour in the buds and install into bag of rice. Slip a hygrometer between outside bag & glass so you can see it's reading, and seal it all up. May take a bit of persistance to get it right where you want it. But go slow.
While aiming for 62%, when the hygrometer rises to 60% I'll put the bud back into it's cure jar and let stabilize. Repeat if needed. The meter will start out really low (being dry) and will rise as it draws moisture out of the bud. Suggest you try and stay right on top of it because it seems to work faster than I expected.
Starting with 72%, made this routine 2Xs and I'm almost perfectly stable at 63%. I may go 1 more time,, but I'll let it sit a day or so before determining that.
This was a spur of the moment idea. Seemed to work for a smaller grow anyways and I'm sure something could be changed or modified to be even better (easier/faster?). This was really flying-by-the-seat-of-the-pants as they say. (ie; not very scientific)
Anyways, living in the mold capital of the universe, I had to do something and relatively quickly. Seems to be working fine.
Hope it helps someone else.