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Best Cannabis Strains for Machine Trimming

Best Cannabis Strains for Machine Trimming
In This Article

    Whether you’re hand trimming or using an industrial bud trimmer, some marijuana strains take a cut better than others.

    What are the best buds for machine trimming? They’re the same buds your trimming crew would squabble over if you were paying them by weight: dense, easy-to-trim ones.

    Tighter Flower = Easier Trim

    A tighter flower structure has fewer internal leaves than a looser one. Tighter, denser buds are easy to trim from the outside, while wispy buds, by comparison, require some skillful maneuvering into the nooks and crannies.

    The difference in bud structure is especially important to machine trimmers. Machine trimmers can’t easily access the inner bud, so the wispier material is harder to trim. Your trimming machine—regardless of its brand and model—is hungry for round, dense buds. All bud trimmer designs have one thing in common: they rotate and tumble the bud to access its leaves. Naturally, the buds that roll the easiest trim up the most nicely.

    Bud Structure and Choosing a Strain

    Indica strains generally trim better than sativas. Sativas come from colder growing regions like Afghanistan and Nepal, and that may be why they keep their buds tucked up nice and tight. Fluffy Sativa strains hail from warmer, coastal climates and grow airy, breathable buds that are less prone to mold.

    Strain selection isn’t actually the biggest variable in bud shape and density; it’s the grower. Quality grow conditions yield quality, tight buds. But, if you’re tailoring your grow operation from top to bottom, it pays to start with the end in mind.

    Large-scale cultivators carefully consider a cultivar’s potential yield, crop cycle, cannabinoid profiles and, of course, potency. More and more, cannabis companies focus on the final product first (THC distillate oil, terpene-rich vapes, boutique flower) and then reverse engineer their operation from there. Strain selection—right down to how the plant dries and trims—is an important consideration.

    Strains that Trim Well

    Skunk #1

    Skunk is a hybrid strain exhibiting the tight Indica-style buds that make for an easy trim. And it’s a classic— Skunk #1 was the first stabilized genetic cross of marijuana coming out of Amsterdam in the 1970’s. Bred from the iconic strains of the 1960’s (Afghani, Acapulco Gold, and Colombian Gold), Skunk has served as the foundational genetics for many of today’s top strains. Though it only tests at 15-20% THC, Skunk is still a favorite for its overall relaxed high.

    Blue Dream

    This cross of Blueberry and Haze has become a household name. One of the most popular strains of the legal cannabis era, Blue Dream combines the looks and tight bud structure of an indica with the medicinal effects of a sativa. Consumers usually prefer a sativa-like high, and growers want an indica-style yield, making Blue Dream’s rise to prominence inevitable. The strain promises consistent potency (20-25% THC) and a mellow yet energetic euphoria. Whether the end product is flower or concentrates, Blue Dream is a sound choice.


    Nobody knows where and how this strain originated, though it has more back-story than most genetics. It’s rumored—probably falsely—to have been bred by the U.S. Central Intelligence Agency in the 1980’s from the most potent strains they confiscated during drug busts. A renegade technician stole a single cutting—possibly under a hail of bullets—and the G-13 strain was liberated. In reality, G-13 is an orphan. It has unidentified parent strains, though it tests as 70% indica and probably has some Skunk in its muddled background. Renowned for its potency (around 25% THC), G-13 is a great strain for oil production.

    Green Crack

    Green Crack’s name has morphed into the less-scary-sounding “Green Cush.” Nevertheless, experienced consumers still know what’s up. “GC” creates an ultra-energetic, focused high. Given its medicinal effect, GC is surprisingly indica-leaning (75/25 indica/sativa). The spunky high probably comes from phenotypes of Skunk and the tight bud structure (that makes it great for your bud trimmer) results from Afghani strains. Decent yield, a short flowering period and that famous, uplifting high make this strain a favorite, regardless of what you call it.

    Gorilla Glue #4 (GG4)

    This another strain in lingo limbo. The makers of Gorilla Glue (the adhesive) sued GG Strains (the makers of this Chocolate Diesel/Chem’s Sister cross). So, Gorilla Glue #4 is now going by GG4—but it’s still an excellent choice for your industrial bud trimmer. Even beyond what you’d expect from its super-high THC levels (25-30%), GG4 yields massive oil when used for extraction. It cooperates with solvent and solvent-free extraction techniques, so it’s often the top pick for concentrate and edibles companies.

    So, keep those buds tight and the industrial bud trimmers rolling. And—regardless of strain—tumble gently for best results. Check out the Triminator Dry machine for a prime example of impact-free trimming or call today to schedule a demo.

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