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Brown Weed – All You Need To Know

Weed comes in a variety of colors, shades, and textures. But one type of weed – brown weed – is shunned. Most experienced smokers will tell you to give brown weed a skip. 

So, what’s the deal with brown weed? Is it old? Is it low quality? Is it bad for you?

In this article, we explore brown weed. Specifically, what it is, what causes it, and whether it’s bad for your health. We also cover some exciting ways to salvage a brown weed stash and repurpose it. 

What Is Brown Weed?

Traditional fresh weed is deep green, with accent shades like red, purple, and blue. Brown weed, also known as Reggie weed, is a muddy brown color. 

You can also identify brown weed by its texture and smell. Brown weed tends to be very dry and brittle. If you touch it, much of the bud will crumble and break away. As for the smell, it has a musty or moldy smell. 

Beyond aesthetic appeal, brown weed has a harsh smell and an even worse taste. The THC is extremely low in brown weed, so even if you smoke a whole joint, it may have no effect. 

What Makes Weed Brown?

Brown weed has typically lost its freshness. But there are several reasons weed can lose its luster, appeal, and THC content. 

Bad Production 

Light brown weed often indicates underlying issues with the cultivation and harvesting process. It may also be caused by the genetic composition of the cannabis strain. There are lots of weed strains, and if a grower doesn’t understand the basics, they might pick a strain with weak genes.

Experienced growers understand the intricate balance needed to cultivate high-quality cannabis. They pay close attention to soil nutrients, pH levels, and how much light the plants get. These factors are crucial for growing good weed.

If growers neglect the soil’s acidity or how much light their plants are getting, they can end up with a poor crop. Plus, if you harvest weed at the wrong time it may result in bud that’s too dry, and a light brown color.

Incorrect Storage 

Improper storage can lead to weed turning brown. This happens when it’s stored in open-air containers that expose the cannabis to oxygen. Placing weed in direct sunlight or storing it in hot, humid places can also cause it to lose potency and turn brown. 

Exposure to air and light alters the chemical composition of cannabis, causing cannabinoids and other compounds to degrade. 

Old Weed

As cannabis ages, it may also lose moisture content, contributing to its brown color. Improper storage, exposure to oxygen, and environmental conditions can accelerate this aging process and cause cannabis to turn brown more rapidly.

Is It Safe To Smoke Brown Weed?

Brown weed might not be harmful, but it’s not your best bet for a good time. The dull appearance is just the tip of the iceberg – it also affects the taste, and strength, and can lead to some unpleasant experiences.

Brown weed doesn’t have much THC resin, so you’ll have to smoke a lot of weed to get even a fraction of the effect of a good-quality strain. Brown weed can also cause dizziness and headaches from excessive smoking and the harsh taste. 

As unfortunate as the above situation is, it’s not necessarily dangerous. But brown weed can be dangerous if it’s brown and slightly spongy. 

Spongy brown weed has retained moisture, making it a breeding ground for mold and fungi. Smoking moldy weed can cause several health problems. It can cause sinus problems and trigger allergic reactions. Moldy weed can also cause respiratory infections.

Dry or spongy, there is nothing to gain from smoking brown weed. Rather, head to your nearest dispensary for a fresh supply worth your time and money. 

How To Check If Weed Is Old 

Weed comes in a lot of colors. Fresh weed can have a varied color palate, including amber and brown tones. This color variety can make it difficult to identify a bad batch if you’re not experienced with weed colors. 

Fortunately, there are tried-and-true methods you can use to identify old weeds in your stash. 

How Weed Is Stored

If stored correctly, you can maintain weed freshness for much longer than without. However, if stored incorrectly, the environment will ruin your supply. 

If you leave weed in direct sunlight, in an open-air container, or exposed to a lot of heat and moisture, the weed will become stale quickly. Always keep your weed in an airtight container and a cool, dark space in your home. 

Dry And Brittle Feel

As weed browns, it loses its luster and potency – the result of too much air exposure. This causes the weed to lose very necessary moisture. If you pick up weed and it’s dry and brittle, enough to crumble with gentle touches, then the weed is old. 

Dull Or Moldy Appearance

A telltale sign that weed is old is a dull, gray appearance. This is both from age and mold growth. Always check dull weed for mold. If the buds are spongy or have any weird growths, give it a skip. 

Dark And Withered Trichomes

Resin trichomes are little hairlike structures on cannabis plants. They can range in color, from clear to amber, depending on their lineage, age, and harvesting techniques. It’s these resin trichomes that hold the THC cannabis smokers so enjoy. 

The trichomes can also tell you a lot about a cannabis plant. If the trichomes are dark or dry to the touch, it’s a sign that the bud is old and has lost much of its potency. 

Musky Or Mildew Smell

Sometimes, a smell is all it takes to determine whether a product is off. If your cannabis has a strange musty smell, it means it’s old and you can give it a skip. 

Harsh Smoke

Fresh, high-quality weed has a full-bodied aroma. It should have a very distinct cannabis smell, depending on the strain. If you light up a joint and smell a very harsh smell and puff a harsh taste, it might be because your weed is old. 

Best Ways To Use Old Weed

If you’ve got a large batch of old, brown weed, throwing it out can be a waste. While not good for smoking, you can repurpose the weed in other ways. The only exception is moldy weed. That needs to be thrown out. 

  • Rehydrate It: If the weed isn’t too old but only lacks a little moisture, you can revive it by rehydrating it. Use hydration packs or citrus fruit peels to reintroduce moisture to the weed without encouraging mold growth. 
  • Make Edibles: Add your weed to cooking oil or your favorite butter and unlock the last bit of THC in the product. It’s a great way to make low-level edibles if you want only a small kick. 
  • Vape It: Vapes don’t burn off as much of the THC as a joint does, which makes it a great option for repurposing old weed. Use a dry herb vape to smoke and salvage what’s left of the THC in your brown weed. 
  • Turn It Into Kief: Making kief requires dry weed. So, sift your brown weed to separate all the dry resin trichomes from the rest of the bud. Collect all the separated trichomes and smoke it or add it to your joints. 

What Should Good Weed Look Like? 

Sometimes, the best way to identify a bad batch is to know what a good batch is supposed to look like. 

Use these markers to identify good weed:

  • Color: Weed comes in various colors, from deep green to purple or even pink! Whatever color your weed is, it should have a mix of vibrant hues that look fresh and healthy. The weed should also have a healthy dose of visible resin trichome hairs. 
  • Aroma: High-quality weed has a heavy, distinct, and full-bodied aroma. It’s unmistakable. It’s never harsh, rather rounded and slightly pungent. The deeper the smell, the better the weed is. 
  • Feel: Good weed is neither wet nor dry, but somewhere in the middle. It should be sticky to the touch because of the resin trichomes. While it should break apart easily, it shouldn’t feel dry or brittle. 


Weed comes in several colors, from deep green to blue to pink. It also comes in brown. 

But where the other colors are a sign of a high-quality product, brown weed is a sign that the weed is old or from a poor crop. Luckily, you can identify the bad brown weed by checking its smell, moisture content, and resin trichomes. 

You also don’t have to waste a big batch of brown weed. Rather, you can repurpose it with edibles, kief, and vapes, or rehydrate it with a hydration pack and citrus fruit peels. 

If you’re tired of brown weed and interested in the best the industry has to offer, visit Embarc. Our catalog of high-quality cannabis products is guaranteed to change your weed experience for the better.