How To Tell What Kind Of Weed Seed You Have

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Different types of cannabis seeds There are different types of cannabis seeds available to the cannabis grower: regular, feminized and auto-flower. The following is a brief explanation of each If you're interested in growing cannabis, determining the sex of your plant is a critical aspect in the cultivation process. Learn whether or not you can tell if a marijuana seed is male or female and more information about feminized seeds. Growing marijuana in your own living space is often described as therapeutic. But in order to be successful, you need to know the difference between seeds & which is right for you. Learn more now!

Different types of cannabis seeds

There are different types of cannabis seeds available to the cannabis grower: regular, feminized and auto-flower. The following is a brief explanation of each type so you can determine what is best for your garden.

For tips on how to care for your clones, head over to KindGenetics.

Regular Seeds

Regular seeds are produced by crossing a male plant with a female plant and can come in either male or female.

With regular seeds, the ratio of male-to-female plants is unknown until flowering starts and the plants present their sex. While female plants produce the desired flower, regular seeds offer growers the opportunity to experience the full expression of that strain’s genetic lineage.

Feminized Seeds

Feminized seeds grow into female plants that produce the desired flower or bud.

Feminized seeds are produced when a female plant produces male flowers. This is caused by introducing light at set times during the dark hours of flowering, or by spraying the flower sites of a female plant with Colloidal Silver to produce a chemical change in the plant that produces male flowers with pollen.

Pollen from “male” flowers are used to pollinate other female flowers, and because the pollen from the “male” flowers is originally from a plant that is technically female, all of the offspring produced should be female.

Auto-flower Seeds

If you are new to growing cannabis, auto-flower seeds may be right for you. Plants will flower when they reach a certain maturity, usually ten weeks from seed, as opposed to flowering in accordance with the daily light schedules.

Auto-flower strains are crosses of modern day strains with Cannabis Ruderalis strains. Cannabis Ruderalis is the 3rd subtype of cannabis, the other two being Indica and Sativa. Cannabis Ruderalis is typically found closer to the North and South Pole, and have a very different lifespan compared to strains originating closer to the Equator.

Due to the lack of sunlight for extended periods of time at both the North and South Pole, Cannabis Ruderalis strains have developed to the point where no matter how much light is present, they will finish out their life cycle.

Can You Tell if a Cannabis Seed is Male or Female?

W hen it comes to growing cannabis, sex is important. Not that kind of sex! We’re talking about the sex of the plant, and whether it is male or female. The reason for this is simple enough: only female seeds produce flower, also known as the buds you might have in your stash as we speak.

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Cannabis seeds can be male, female or hermaphrodites. Females produce the resin-secreting flower, and males make small sacs of pollen near the base of the leaves. Over the years, cultivators have learned that un-pollinated females (remember, males produce pollen) continue to make resin as they grow, and flowers that have not been pollinated are much more likely to produce high-potency cannabis. This is the basis of all modern medical and recreational cannabis cultivation, so determining the sex of a plant is highly important. But is there a way to know if a seed is female before growing?

Table of Contents:

  1. Determining if a Cannabis Seed Is Male or Female
  2. What Are Feminized Cannabis Seeds?
  3. Methods for Feminizing Cannabis Plants
  4. Separating Male and Female Cannabis Plants
  5. How Important is Your Plant’s Sex?
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Determining if a Cannabis Seed Is Male or Female

The straightforward answer is that, if what you’ve got is a handful of unmarked seeds, it’s pretty much impossible to tell which ones are male or female. The only true way to tell the plant’s gender is to plant a seed, then wait for it to mature.

After a period of several weeks, the plant will begin to pre-flower, or form a small bud in the crux of a branch. One of the first signs your cannabis plant is female is the appearance of pistillates that are wispy and generally white in color. Male plants will instead produce pollen sacs that look rounded with distinct splits running lengthwise, a bit like a tiny crab claw. These are the structures that growers typically look for to determine a plant’s sex.

If you’re looking for more precise, science-based methods to tell your plant’s gender, there are several labs that can sex your plant right after germination – eliminating the lengthy (usually around 6 weeks) wait to learn its gender. Portland, Oregon start-up Phylos Bioscience is in the business of studying cannabis genetics, and they sell a “plant sex kit” that’s pretty simple to do, even for the folks that aren’t scientifically inclined. Simply press a cotyledon, or embryonic leaf, onto the kit’s filter paper and send it to their lab. They then test the leaf for the “Y” chromosome to determine its gender, just as would happen for a human male.

What Are Feminized Cannabis Seeds?

While it’s basically not possible to determine the sex of a seed from a random bag of seeds, a practice known as feminizing is quite popular. Feminized seeds are selectively bred to produce only female plants.

While the process is very effective, it’s not perfect. There’s a chance that a small fraction of the seeds produced via the feminization method will sprout hermaphrodites, which are still capable of producing pollen.

Despite the potential for ‘hermies,’ knowing your seeds are female from the beginning is probably your best bet.

There are many companies that sell feminized seeds, but buyer beware, do your research to make sure the seller is reputable, especially if purchasing online. Thanks to modern technology, most feminized seeds from reliable brands will be 100% female as advertised – but that doesn’t mean there aren’t people selling low-quality seeds out there.

Methods for Feminizing Cannabis Plants

If you have some experience growing cannabis and would like to bend a crop to your will to ensure that the seeds will be female, there are a few feminizing methods you might try. One such technique is to literally stress out a healthy female plant by interrupting the light cycle during flowering, called Rodelization Feminizing.

In the colloidal silver feminizing method, distilled water is mixed with pure silver and sprayed on female plants. This method works best when the plants are flowering. This results in pollen sacs being formed, which will allow the seeds to produce female plants.

Feminizing via the silver thiosulfate technique involves carefully selecting a nearly mature female plant, then spraying it with a 50/50 mix of sodium thiosulfate and silver nitrate. This triggers a gender change, from female to male. Place this plant back with the others to pollinate other female plants, and female seeds are created.

Separating Male and Female Cannabis Plants

As anyone with seasonal allergies can attest, it only takes a little bit of pollen to have a big impact. The reason that growers are so intent on weeding out male cannabis plants is that a single pollinator can negate an entire potential harvest.

How? The reason is that once pollinated, cannabis plants will cease devoting energy to growing flowers and will tell the existing flowers to stop producing resin, which translates to making less buds and less THC. That energy will be devoted to producing seeds instead. Think of the plant as a battery with a set amount of power. When that supply is spent in one area, it won’t be available for another.

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Now consider that a single male plant can spread its pollen to an entire room of females.

If a grow is accidentally pollinated, that means the resources that were spent to bring the plants to that stage — the water, soil, electricity, fertilizers, not to mention the price of the seeds themselves — will have been wasted growing weed that can’t be smoked.

All of those male plants will have to be carefully separated from the grow space and destroyed, or else the growers risk another disastrous accidental pollination. It takes minuscule amounts of pollen to pollinate a plant, so growers must take extensive precautions to eliminate potential contamination. In addition to helping mitigate other contaminants, this is one of the main reasons that many workers will don full-body suits when working in a grow room, ensuring that accidental pollen exposure is kept to a minimum.

How Important is Your Plant’s sex?

How much time you want to spend figuring out the sex of your cannabis plants really depends on how much time and energy you’d like to devote to growing your own marijuana. If you are a medical cannabis patient or caregiver, for example, and need to know what kind of cannabis you are getting every time to keep a reliable supply, buying feminized seeds from a trusted seller is the way to go. It may even be worth it to have your plants tested for sex before they mature. However, if you have some time, consider yourself a green thumb, and want to experiment with your grow, you could simply plant your seeds and see what comes up. Happy growing!

What are your thoughts on feminized seeds? If you’ve used them before, how did it go? Share your experiences in the comments below.

Author

Erin Hiatt is a New York City-based writer who has been covering the cannabis industry for more than six years. Her work – which has appeared in Hemp Connoisseur Magazine, PotGuide, Civilized, Vice, Freedom Leaf, MERRY JANE, Alternet, and CannaInvestor – covers a broad range of topics, including cannabis policy and law, CBD, hemp law and applications, science and technology, beauty, and psychedelics.

Erin’s work and industry insights have been featured on the podcasts The Let’s Go Eat Show, In the Know 420, and she has appeared as a featured panelist on the topic of hemp media. Erin has interviewed top industry experts such as Dr. Carl Hart, Ethan Nadelmann, Amanda Feilding, Mark A.R. Kleiman, Dr. James Fadiman, and culture icons Governor Jesse Ventura, and author Tom Robbins. You can follow her work on LinkedIn, WordPress, @erinhiatt on Twitter, and @erinisred on Instagram.

The 3 Types of Cannabis Seeds You Need to Know

Growing marijuana in your own living space is often described as therapeutic. As owners are responsible for its growth, watering and monitoring plants can be relaxing. Once a successful yield is produced, recreational use of cannabis has many health benefits. ( make sure that you choose the right Boo Glass bong to go with it! *wink*)

If you plan to grow your own plants, proper research is required. Before determining your seed’s growth environment and medium, choosing it’s seed comes first. For growers, there are three different cannabis seed types available: Regular, Feminimized, and Auto-flower. But what are they, and is one more advantageous than the other? Below we’ll briefly discuss each one, so you’ll know which seeds are best for you.

REGULAR SEEDS

Production of regular seeds occurs between a male and a female. As a result, you won’t know your plant’s gender until flowering begins. If your objective is to yield quality buds that offer cannabinoids, you’ll need to seperate the males from the females.

Segregation of genders prevents pollination (impressively spreading from 3 to 3.75 miles) and the production of seeds. Male plants are typically discarded due to being incapable of producing flowers that produce cannabinoids. Due to a lack of cannabinoids, the end product generally isn’t not worth-while to consumers.

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Male plants, however, do possess other various benefits. For one, male plants produce a soft material that is useful for the production of hemp. Hemp products such as clothing, shoes, and general household products require soft and durable fiber which males provide. Male plants can also produce aromatic oils, highly beneficial in the garden for pest control.

Advantages
  • 100% pure as they’re not genetically altered
  • Produce both genders, allowing for the creation of new seeds
  • No chemical agents in regular seeds unlike feminized seeds
  • Seeds can be used for other purposes such as hemp production

How to Determine Your Cannabis’s Plants Sex

Identifying a plant’s gender generally comes at around the 4-6 week mark into the growth cycle. As the plant transitions into a flower from its vegetative stage, energy is primarily used for pollination and reproduction.

When looking for sex indicators, cultivators can check between the plant’s nodes. Plant nodes are located on the stem, where the buds are. Check nodes to find the growth of small sacs or two bracts. Pollen sacs are developed on a male plant, spreading seeds and stigma for females.

Bracts are a female plant’s reproductive parts, appearing as green tear-shaped leaves.

Feminized Cannabis Seeds

As mentioned prior, for growers looking for highly concentrated forms of cannabis, female plants are ideal. Unfertilized females, instead of reproducing, will utilize their energy to produce rich cannabinoids known as Sensimilla. These resinous buds are highly concentrated forms of cannabis, typically seen in stores. Online stores today generally cater to cannabis users nationwide, such as cannabis seeds at Zamnesia .

For practical purposes that simplify things for the grower, feminized seeds are also superior. As growing and removing male plants is a non-issue, growers won’t need to grow twice as many. Not only does this save time and costs, but you’ll also be able to maximize your growing space. However, if you intend to grow new seeds, feminized seeds prevent the production of male plants.

Advantages
  • Female Plants produce Sensimilla, responsible for consumer-friendly weed products.
  • Make the most of your growing space by germinating seeds required.
  • Saves time and work on removing male plants
  • No sexing is necessary, which can be challenging for first-timers

Auto-flower Seeds

For first-timers peering through the curtain into growing cannabis, auto-flower seeds is a good choice. Once plants reach a particular stage ( usually ten weeks in ), they will begin to flower. An auto-flower seed’s growth requires only a minimal amount of sunlight to finish its life cycle. For growers, this saves time and simplifies the process. Instead of allocating several hours of daylight and darkness to their plant, they can relax and let the plant develop independently.

This seed type is a mix of modern-day strains with Cannabis Ruderalis, a species from Russia. Cannabis Ruderalis is among two other subtypes of cannabis, with the others being Indica and Sativa. As this cannabis plant is located in areas with shorter summers, ruderalis plants bloom faster with less sunlight.

This seed type is recommended to new growers, due to lower-maintenance needs and a faster growth time. Autoflowering is also renowned for its resiliency, boasting sturdy and robust genetics. So while growing in your backyard, they’ll be able to handle insect infestations and mold.

Advantages
  • Requires minimal daylight, easing plant scheduling for owners
  • Grows at a faster pace
  • A durable plant that can fend itself against typical issues seen in gardens

This gives you the basics in knowing about the 3 different types of cannabis seeds that you might choose from.

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