Wet vs. Dry Trimmer: Which Theory Holds Water?


Whether with a large or small operation, any grower will tell you that there is a lot involved with the process of growing buds. 

There are numerous steps along the way, from planting seeds to harvesting and curing your flower.

All of the steps are important and have their challenges, but the one step that gets your bud from a grow house to shelves involves trimming.

Again, there are important factors along the way, but during the trimming process, all of your previous work comes to fruition. 

If this step in the process goes awry, then all that came before was wasted time, effort, and money. 

This part is where harvested buds are trimmed and prepped for curing and for sale.

Bud trimming is the process that removes the unwanted plant material that is around the bud. Curing comes after trimming.

There are two methods for trimming buds. Like many other things in life, there is a genuine debate over which practice is best; wet trimming or dry trimming. 

As both methods are employed, it would seem that there is no one clear winner over the other. 

It may be more a case of personal preference. A bit like Coke over Pepsi. 

It may also just come down to taste. Let's look at both wet and dry trimming and what they entail.


Why Are Buds Trimmed?

Aesthetic Appeal

One of the reasons is that the product looks better. If you are going to be selling, this will be important to you. 

There are many sellers out there that trim their product, and if yours does not look as good as theirs, yours probably won't sell as readily.

Smoother Going Down

The leaves left on can lead to an end product that is not very smooth. 

It can be an irritant to the throat. This is of particular importance to those who use the product for medical purposes.

Leaves Not As Potent

Most of the concentration is in the buds, not in the leaves. Growers would rather have more yield per gram when leaves are processed separately. 

Trimming increases the potency of the end product.

Before we discuss both wet and dry trimmers' pros and cons, we will look at the trimmers themselves. Starting from largest to smallest, here are trimmers that will help with your harvest.


Centurion Pro Mini Trimmer

Centurion Pro Mini Trimmer

Product description Per Manufacturer:

The CenturionPro Mini replaces 15 human trimmers without sacrificing quality.

It has a processing capacity of 12 - 16 lbs dry per hour (60 - 80 lbs wet). It might be called "Mini," but it is a true powerhouse that is perfect for small to medium-size operations that are looking to streamline their process.

The Mini runs completely off of 120-volt power and includes a 1.5 hp leaf collector system with 2000 CFM of suction power. This makes for tighter cuts.

The Toro hardened steel cutting reel has 11 high-quality blades, twice as many as the competition. The Centurion triple-bag system for keif and trim allows you to collect both and process them for even greater profits, so you can get the absolute most out of your product.

Like all CenturionPro trimming machines, the Mini can handle both wet and dry products. It ships with two hybrid tumblers that are designed for both wet and dry trimming.

Having two means no downtime for cleaning. Simply swap them out and continue trimming with the second tumbler while you clean the first.


Centurion Pro Tabletop Trimmer

Centurion Pro Tabletop Mini Trimmer

Product Description Per Manufacturer:

The Centurion Tabletop Pro is the smallest, most efficient tumble style trimmer in the world. Includes both Wet and Dry Electropolished Tumblers. 

This machine sits at a trim 24'' in length x 10'' width x 21'' in height. Weighing only 35 lbs, this trimmer is the epitome of elegant engineering at its finest. 

Built for the connoisseur who admires the finer things in life, this machine was designed to be the most delicate machine on the market today.

Don't be fooled by the size; the Tabletop Pro replaces over six human trimmers without sacrificing quality. 

This trimmer is currently being shipped World Wide to small growers who demand quality, durability, and privacy. 

This machine works with wet flowers and will harvest 15-20 lbs wet per hour of use. The Tabletop Pro runs completely off 120v power and comes with a strong 1hp leaf collector with 1800 CFM of suction power.

Another quality of the Tabletop Pro is ease of keeping the blade clean, which is made out of D2 hardened steel. 

Unlike any other brand on the market, The Centurion Tabletop Pro employs a magnetic blade holding technology that allows for a five-minute clean-up during operation, ensuring the machine has a consistently sharp, clean-cut and operates at a rapid pace.

The Centurion brand is the only machine in the world that comes inclusive with a non-stick QuanTanium Coated tumbler. 

The non-stick properties of the QuanTanium tumbler prevent precious trichomes from adhering to the tumbler surface. T

his results in the flowers having a better visual appearance while maintaining their strong natural aroma and flavors. Overall, you will notice a more potent flower as all-natural properties are preserved during the harvesting process.

The extra-large hopper makes consistent feeding of the machine easier.

Centurion machines are the only brand that uses a unique diverter to help fine-tune the flow and cut on different strains giving the grower the ability to quickly adjust to different strains or density of flowers. 

These diverters are how the machine can process dry flowers so delicately while still ensuring a tight clean cut and finish!

A double bag system for trim collection aids in the ease of keeping the bags clean and helps save the trim for further extraction processes.


Elite Stand Up Leaf Trimmer


Elite Stand Up Leaf Trimmer

Product Description Per Manufacturer:

 The Elite Stand Up Leaf Trimmer is here to revolutionize trimming. It will last season after season with it’s all aluminum, rust-proof, corrosion-proof construction. 

It’s lightweight and easy to transport from site to site. 

The trimmer is also designed to be super easy to clean! The top portion of can be tilted to pour out it’s contents easily, and the included catch bag's built-in handle makes for quick transportation and disposal. 

Twisted Trimmers build the industry’s best trimmers and will shave time and stress off your harvest today! 


14.5" Diameter, 19" Depth, 37.5” Tall 


Twisted Trimmers 18" Clear Top Bowl Trimmer

Twisted Trimmers 18" Clear Top Bowl Trimmer

Product Description Per Manufacturer:

You won't find this size anywhere else; it's an industry first! The Twisted Trimmers 18" Clear Top model features a clear plastic top for better visibility and a removable handle for convenient storage!

Cut twigs and remove leaves from a multitude of different plants for projects like making essential oils, aromatherapy products, and potpourris. Save time and energy and let the trimmer do the work for you!

This 18" bowl trimmer harnesses the power of 30 scissors in one unit and includes (1) straight blade made of high-quality stainless steel.

When it's time to harvest from your hydroponic system, you'll be glad you have it!


Twisted Trimmers 16" Open Top Hand Trimmer

Twisted Trimmers 16" Open Top Hand Trimmer

Product Description Per Manufacturer:

These metal top trimmers are 100% stainless steel and built to last. There is no plastic, which makes them extremely durable.

The open-top allows you to easily see your work and also fill it without having to remove the top.

This no-frills trimmer will get the job done.

When it's time to harvest from your hydroponic system, you'll be glad you have it!


Trim'R-matic Electric Handheld Trimmer

 Trim'R-matic Electric Handheld Trimmer

Product Description Per Manufacturer:

The benefits of using an automatic trimmer are numerous. The Trim'R-Matic will triple your trimming output, with speeds of up to 12 cuts per second!

But no need to worry about sacrificing quality, the Trim'R-Matic handles easily and allows for higher levels of precision than trimming on your own.

Studies show that repeated actions with your hands can lead to all sorts of repetitive motion disorders using the Trim'R-Matic helps eliminate those worries, as it does all that work for you! 

The Trim'R-Matic goes to work for you with an oscillating blade and two blades on either side that it traps the leaves of the plant between. 

Using the handy, built-in speed controller, the user can change the speed of the trimmer from slow to high, and it also works as the off switch.

The Trim'R-Matic runs on 120v or 240v and plugs straight into the wall or power strip, which means that there is no heavy power supply to carry around, making trimming all that much easier. 

Its compact size makes it ideal for working in a tight grow room, grow tent, or hydroponic setup!


Wet Trimming

Immediately after harvesting, the leaves are removed from the bud. It is referred to as wet trimming as the plant is still wet when trimmed. 

The bud will dry up, so this trimming needs to happen before the bud dries up. Most feel that wet trimming is easier and possibly more efficient. 

Once the trimming is done, the grower just needs to dry out the buds and does not need to remove the extra leaves afterward. 

Growers who prefer the wet trimming method point out that mold issues occur between the stalk and the bud. 

In wet trimming, the bud gets removed from the stalk. This will significantly reduce the chances of mold. 

When a bud is wet trimmed, and then dried, it gets the opportunity to "puff out." This can make the bud visually more appealing to the end-user. 

Wet trimming is compatible with trimming machines because the bud is already humid and easier to cut in a tumble style machine. 

Large scale operations find that wet trimming is the most efficient choice for them.


Wet trimming advantages include:

It is easier. When buds are fresh, the leaves lie perpendicular to the buds, making them easier to trim off.

It is faster. The leaves are easy to see at this point, so the time taken to trim is lessened.

Reduction in the risk of mold. Mold develops wherever there is moisture. Leaves on the buds are likely to hold moisture. An increase in humidity can lead to mold, so trimming the bud while it is still wet reduces the chances of this occurring. 

Less space needed for drying. The buds' size is smaller when trimmed, so they don't require as much room for drying.


Wet trimming disadvantage includes:

It is messier. If you are using scissors, the wet material builds up on your scissors, decreases their performance, and makes you stop to clean them frequently. 

Lots to do in a short length of time. This practice is labor-intensive. If you are a private, not a commercial grower, you will probably need help with this step. 

All the plants need to be cut down, separated, and trimmed all at the same time. 


Dry Trimming

The opposite (obviously) of wet trimming, dry trimming as its proponents too. While the process can be less efficient, some growers feel strongly that dry trimming is more effective. 

When you dry trim, you control the drying speed. It also produces a bud that has less harsh smoke. 

When dry trimming is employed, it allows the grower to control the speed at which the buds dry out. 

They can then prevent them from drying too quickly. Indeed, buds dried before being trimmed are not as "pretty" as those wet trimmed, but proponents feel strongly that it delivers a better product for the end-user.

In dry trimming, harvested stalks and buds are hung to dry before trimming. Growers will cut the branches with buds into medium, manageable sizes. 

The next step removes the bigger "non-sugar" leaves, and the buds and stems get hung to dry. 

This will produce a "gentler" product, but a dried bud is not as easily trimmed. 

Once the drying process is complete, removal of the smaller "sugar" leaves takes place.


Dry Trimming Advantages Include:

You get high-quality buds. When the sugar leaves remain on the bud during the drying process, it slows down drying speed. 

As this slow process continues, the chlorophyll fades from the bud, and you will get smoother buds for consumption.

Not as hectic at harvest. Instead of needing to do the harvesting and trimming simultaneously, if you are dry trimming your buds, you don't have to do the trimming all at once. 

Both large and small operations benefit from this grace period when time is of the essence.  

You get consistent weights with dry trimming. Trimming is easier when the bud is dry. Buds are light in weight and uniform because most of the water has evaporated. 

If you are paying someone to trim for you based on weight, this is the best way to go. 


Dry Trimming Disadvantages Include: 

You can damage the trichomes. With the bud being dry, the trichomes are now delicate and brittle. Trim with caution. This will make the process take longer. 

This takes up a lot of space.  Buds on the stalks take up more space. You have to have the space to dry them hung upside down.

This takes more time. You will need to wait until the flowers feel slightly crunchy on the outside and small branches snap easily. This can be anywhere from five to 15 days. 

You need to control the atmosphere. During the drying process, you need to have the room where they are hanging dark and between 60 - 70 degrees. 

Humidity should be between 45% - 55%. Have a small fan in the room to circulate the air, but you want to do this gently.

You need more equipment. To keep conditions right for the hanging plants, you may need a dehumidifier, an air conditioning unit, and a fan. 


In Conclusion

There are valid arguments for both wet and dry trimming. It can come down to the use you make of your product, the size of your harvest and your personal preference. 

Wet trimming is good for beginners because it avoids mold and gives you prettier bulbs. Dry trimming will give you better falvor and aroma and a shortened curing time. 

It may be a good idea to try both methods to see which one is right for you.  

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  • Trevor
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