upcycle marijuana plants
upcycle marijuana plants

Upcycling Cannabis Leftovers - Stretching Your Grow to the Max!

Can you upcycle cannabis plants and soil?

Posted by:
Reginald Reefer on Tuesday Jun 2, 2020

Upcycling Cannabis Leftovers – Stretching your Grow to the Max!


upcycle cannabis grow

Over the years, I have written many articles on growing weed – but there are some hidden benefits I have not yet spoken about. Today, we’re going to be diving into the dynamics of “upcycling” your leftovers.


What do I mean by “leftovers?” Within any cannabis-grow, you’ll have by-products that include things like stems, sugar leaf, soil, trim, and so forth. Depending on the quantity of each – there are several different things you can do to “upcycle” them and create some interesting additional by-products like hash, root tinctures, compost, and so on.


Let’s take a closer look at some of the different things you can make from your cannabis-grow.




One of the more abundant leftover-resources will of course be stems. Many growers could give two shits about stems and usually chucks them away or perhaps throws them on a composting heap. However, as an efficient grower, you could convert these stems into a few different upcycled products including;


Mild Stem Tea – Oh you didn’t know you could use those stems to make a mild tea? Well – you can! So the next time you’re about to toss those stems, why not rather save them, and when you are ready, decarb the stems [you heard that right] and then grind it up. Then, throw that stuff in some high-fat coconut oil for about 10 minutes and strain afterward. The tea won’t get you high – but it’s mellow for sure and has a lot of other therapeutic benefits.


Stem-Topical- You can also use your stems to create a cannabinoid-rich topical. In homeopathic stores, you can find neutral hypoallergenic cream which you can infuse with coconut oil [which was infused with stems a-la-stem-tea].


Make some Hemp Paper – You can also turn your stems either into Hemp Wick [with beesewax

] or you could learn the ancient art of making paper. While this isn’t as “functional” as perhaps making hemp wick or topicals – making your own paper is just something that not everyone can say. For “cool points” – you’ll be raking them in.


Make some Bubble Hash – Another thing you probably didn’t know you could do is make hash. A typical cannabis grow will have a lot of THC crystals on stems, meaning it’s a missed opportunity. All you have to do is submerge the stems in Everclear for a day or so, and then slowly evaporate the alcohol and what you’ll be left with is some sticky-icky.



Sugar Leaf


If you’re not using your sugar leaf then you’re not growing weed correctly. Of course, sugar leaf or “trim” isn’t the ideal product, but it certainly has plenty of THC on it. Make some bubble hash, or use it for a tincture or a topical – but for the love of Ganja do not throw it away.


Sugar Leaf is the grower’s friend, the little reward at the end of a long season and well – it gives you hash. Hash is great! Why not get more out of your grow for minimal extra effort?




If you’re growing in soil – which many growers do – you don’t have to replace the soil every time. If you work efficiently, you’ll be able to create a system where you can use and re-use soil several times over.


If you’re not doing this already – composting is a great way where you can even upcycle your food to become nutrition for your soil. If you managed to get through a complete crop cycle – you can make a mix of 30% old soil and 70% compost which should be more than enough to replenish the nutrients in the soil.


Additionally, all of the root work of the previous grow would have helped buff up the structure of the soil.


This is not really possible if you had pathogens in the soil. In these cases, it would be best to pasteurize the soil for 24 hours by placing it in a black garbage bag in the sun for 24 hours. This will kill a lot of the beneficial bacteria and so forth – meaning, you’ll have to replenish the soil with some fertilizer post-pasteurization.


Nonetheless – re-using your soil not only diminishes costs, but it’s also a way for you to create systems that feed into each other.


Bottom Line


I stringently believe in trying to get the most out of my activities. If I can generate a few more grams of hash or perhaps a topical to help with sore muscles – I consider it a win. The suggestions above are merely a suggestion and hope to spark your creative unconscious to come up with other interesting ways to upcycle your grow.


Are there any special tricks you like to do with the leftover byproducts you obtain when growing marijuana? Let us know in the comment section.









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