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What makes ash white or black?

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    What makes ash white or black?

    If you burn cannabis, the ash will turn either white/gray or black. Most people agree that white ash is better or more "pure" than black ash, but what causes the difference?

    I've purchased cannabis that turns black after being burned, but to be honest, the ash of my home-grown cannabis has always been white. So it's hard for me to say for sure what's causing some people to get black ash, since it's never happened with bud that I've grown myself.
    • Many growers agree that certain pesticides or chemicals make ash turn black
    • It's possible that the drying and curing process can have an effect (for example using heat to dry your buds, or smoking buds that are still wet)
    What do you all think makes ash turn black or white?

    ~Nebula

    #2
    Several factors will determine how completely the cannabis combustion is.. The more completely the combustion the whiter the ash. My 2c.
    completed 7 grows
    what I have learned so far:
    environment maters more than nutrients
    at least a dab of nutrients in every watering
    effective flushing before harvest is critical to quality

    Comment


      #3
      Yes flock is right there is for sure countless factors and we cannot name them all but it all comes to how well it combust. Not what's in it. Certainly there could be chemicals that burn in diferent ways and very harmful pesticides and in not arguing.

      So the the thing is the oxigen. Combustion with low oxigen causes soot to form. This is because in a molecular level there was not enough oxigen to burn everything. Every body has seen how a flame is affected by oxigen and how it can cause things to for soot. So when you smoke not dried enough weed the ash will have black in it. i invite everybody to smoke some weed with 70% humidity and some weed at 50% and check it for yourself.

      Comment


      • alltatup
        alltatup commented
        Editing a comment
        Very useful info!!!

      #4
      I new a guy once that tried growing for the first time.
      finish buds looked great.
      but he dint no nothing about flusing and when came ta smoke it could not keep it lit. would not burn had ta blast with a torch ta smoke Black black ash real salty tasting caugh like a basted.

      That's when we found out about flushing ....lol
      Last edited by 4barrel; 03-05-2017, 08:14 PM.

      Comment


      • NebulaHaze
        NebulaHaze commented
        Editing a comment
        It's interesting that was his experience! I've grown cannabis with and without flushing before, and I've never had that happen. When I first grew I didn't know to flush, but my ash has still always been white!

      • Flockshot
        Flockshot commented
        Editing a comment
        I have seen, one time, a plant that when dried and cured would not burn. I really do mean that, cuz I tried. It was free. I tried. It would not burn, but I don't know why.

      #5
      I agree with Nebula, I have pot I'm smoking now that is bought (Purple Kush) and has a much greyer aspect to the ash.
      And yes, cannabis I have grown burns white. Must be the TLC. Tender Lovin' Care for you youngins'.
      ​​​​​​3 X 3 gorilla. Promix soil . Green Planet Nutes
      Mars Hydro
      Vortex in-line 6" fan

      Comment


        #6
        Att NebulaHaz:Yeah but he was pouring the blue miracle salts like no tomarrow so...that's why

        Comment


          #7
          I read all the replies. I agree with all of you. It seems we all agree that many factors effect on what is going to be remained (never used such a verb before, wish I've written it correctly) in ash. But if it depends on many factors why do Nebula always see white ash in her own buds?

          In my idea the darker the ash, the incomplete the combustion. It's what i know is true for sure and this is the main reason that determine the color of the ash.
          Last edited by Iammygod; 03-05-2017, 10:03 PM.

          Comment


          • 4barrel
            4barrel commented
            Editing a comment
            I think it's not completely flushed...
            well flush plants would burn whiter....
            but.....
            what do I know...
            I haven't smoked a joint in over 10 years
            damn drug testing employment

            But they can't stop me from growing it.. MwA HA HA

          • Flockshot
            Flockshot commented
            Editing a comment
            Nebula will always see white ash on hers because she doesn't have any of the factors we are referring to that cause black ash. I don't pretend to know what all the factors are, but I do know that black ash generally means bad taste.

          • Iammygod
            Iammygod commented
            Editing a comment
            Not always. She had cannabis with black ash either.

          #8
          NebulaHaze, I did a small experiment last night after reading this post. I have been keeping and smoking the 'trimmings' from my plants (lack of planning, or using more of the last harvest). I noticed that when dried and smoked, the un-cured leaf would actually spark and burn rather quickly. I believe that this was due to unused nitrates and phosphates from the nutrients, not having been thru a flush cycle. I did some 'rapid curing' by baking the trim in the oven for two hours at 220 degrees F., this stopped the rapid burning and mellowed the smoke some what but made it very dry and produced a lot of 'black' ash.
          Last night I re hydrated the trim by placing an orange wedge in the baggie, don't laugh too hard, I've known folks that used apple slices to keep their tobacco fresh and added a flavor as well. I tried, at varying intervals, burning samples and was pleasantly surprised to find that the re hydration mellowed the smoke and increased the amount of 'grey' ash, indicating a more complete combustion. I can not claim that it also improved the potency at all because of the accumulative effects of such a test (LOL). Here are some photos (for Your amusement!).
          Smoke weed,.....grow peace!

          Comment


          • NA420
            NA420 commented
            Editing a comment
            Luv the aluminum can bong i used to use that all the time!

          • NebulaHaze
            NebulaHaze commented
            Editing a comment
            Wow, this is a really great experiment! I'm so glad you shared with us! Definitely food for thought. It does seem to add evidence that the way you dry/cure the buds has an effect!

          • DW2
            DW2 commented
            Editing a comment
            Thanks, the 'quick cure' by baking the trim in the oven is only a 'stop-gap' measure, it does not produce a better quality smoke as does thee normal curing process. I do think that it does break down some of the un-used nutrients in the trim and accelerates the breakdown of the chlorophyll, but I would not do the entire crop this way. I did try a small amount of trim today that was removed after I started the flush cycle and without the baking (just air dried) it smoked very well, I was very surprised. I will, from now on, flush every time before harvesting! This proves, to me, that flushing is a very necessary part of the process to produce top notch bud.

          #9
          In my quest for 'higher' learning (and yes, all puns are intended! LOL), I forgot to give my explanation (or more likely, my quesstomation) of what I think made the difference. The darker, or black, ash must contain a greater amount of un-oxidized carbon in it. The lighter, or grey ash, has the remnants of the plant matter, the silicates and other compounds, the carbon, being oxidized, leaving as CO2. I think that the presence of the small amount of water in the material allows for a more complete combustion of the carbon. I believe that the cured plant matter (both leaf and bud) have the carbon compounds reduced to a more readily burnable state and therefore produces a whiter ash. I could be totally wrong on this as organic chemistry is a very complicated thing and many variables exist and it is way beyond my scope of education.
          As to the perceived potency or not, I just had an other bowl (actually a can) and .... what was the question again? (LOL)
          Smoke weed,.....grow peace!

          Comment


            #10
            I always thought it was because the grower didn't flush his or her plant before harvest. Only reason why I believed that was because The Cookie Fam the ones that allegedly created the famous Thin Mint Girl Scout Cookies always say in they're you tube videos or documentaries that you can tell if the bud has been flushed properly and also tell if the bud is good by the color of the ashes and obiously they say if the ash is whit le it's good bud meaning it's been flushed properly. So maybe grey or black ash means no good flush or no flush at all before harvest. I believed it because they have created some of the best strain or at least famous strains out that are popular here in California. But now that Nebula Haze said she smoked unflushed weed and had white ashes I don't know..

            Comment


            • NebulaHaze
              NebulaHaze commented
              Editing a comment
              Yes, and I was using chemical nutrients too! Nothing organic. Although the ash color stayed the same, I do feel like the flavor got better after I started flushing. But it may be that I just got better at drying/curing, since that seems to have the biggest effect on taste that I can tell. That being said I flush every time now, just to be safe

            #11
            I know I read an article recently in which the company Advanced Nutrients was discussing this very topic, and they brought up two points I noted... the first was the harder to light bud and bud that doesn't burn down to white ash is because of the fertilizers left behind in the plant material. At the time I didn't know what to think so I did some tests on different stuff and in the end I concluded that yes there does seem to a noticeable difference on if you flushed correctly and cured the bud properly it burns down to white ash and was very enjoyable, the stuff that didn't left a more desirable experience from the smoking experience. The second point they brought up was talking about flushing and how not all flushing agents are created the same and by the time I got done asking around about that I really learned a lot.
            The only way to become the a good at anything is to read about it and learn all you can about it, and if it's something you love why not become an expert in it? The best place for anyone to start is at the beginning and make sure we didn't overlook anything, so let's go back to the basics.
            http://www.growweedeasy.com/basics

            Comment


            #12
            I also read it was a result of flushing and curing. Have yet to harvest my first so stay tuned 5th week flower for me
            2-4X4 tents, 1200 WATT LED'S in Promix Organic with worm castings , vermiculite, and bone meal with Island Nutes and 7 gal grow pots

            Comment


              #13
              The flushing prior to harvesting may very well affect the curing and the smoothness of the bud or trim, I have not done a flush cycle on the previous grows, I am doing it on this grow in an effort to reduce the curing time. My last grow took more time than I was expecting to cure out. Smoking unused fertilizer can't be good for You, by either health or taste wise. I did a flush on last Saturday (FloraKleen) and I'm going to drain and refill the reservoir with plain pH'ed water today and then, chop, chop on Friday.
              A thanks to all for their information and input and great growing to all.
              Smoke weed,.....grow peace!

              Comment

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