Types Of Weed Seeds

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Auto-flowering, feminized, traditional? Find out which cannabis seeds are best for your grow. Everything You Need To Know About Different Types Of Cannabis Seeds Cannabis cultivation can be complicated, especially if you don’t already have commercial growing experience. There are light Seeds

Cannabis Seeds Explained

T here’s something liberating about having the freedom to grow your own medicine from cannabis seeds. Cannabis, in particular, has huge therapeutic potential thanks to its many strain variations allowing for targeted therapeutic relief.

Of course, buying marijuana seeds is not as simple as purchasing a packet of tomato or marigold seeds. Quality cannabis seeds are more costly, harder to come by and may produce unwanted male plants come flower time. Not only that, cannabis seedlings and plants need more diligent attention to produce an optimum yield requiring the grower to be invested in both time and money for a successful grow. It is because of this that prudent cannabis seed selection is recommended.

Things to Consider When Purchasing Cannabis Seeds

First and foremost, it’s important to know which type of cannabis strain you’re interested in growing. This means determining whether you want to grow indicas for pain relief and sleep disorders (which grow smaller and quicker making them ideal for indoor grows), sativas for anxiety issues and mental stimulation (which grow taller over a longer period suggesting they be grown outdoors), or hybrid strains which reside somewhere in the middle. Carefully consider your therapeutic goals and grow environment when making this decision.

Additionally, you need to consider which type of seed you want to start from. Specifically, you’ll need to decide whether to start your grow from regular seeds, feminized seeds or auto-flowering seeds. This decision can affect many aspects of your grow so consider your options carefully.

Traditional, Feminized and Auto-flowering Marijuana Seeds: Key Differences

On the surface, there is no distinguishable difference between traditional, feminized and auto-flowering seeds, but deep within them buried in their genetics are some major differences that can affect your grow – and your budget – in a few important ways.

Traditional Seeds:

Traditional seeds are the same ones you’ll find in the bottom of a stash of green or on the discount shelf at your local dispensary. They are the product of a male plant pollinating a female and may produce either male or female pot plants at maturity (as a reminder, only female plants produce buds that will get you high). It is estimated that only a 66 percent of traditional seeds will be female and it’s virtually impossible to determine sex until the flowering phase. If you do find a boy amongst your girls at the dawn of the flower phase, act fast! Boys will pollinate girls quickly resulting in seedy weed.

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Feminized Seeds:

Feminized seeds are seeds that have been specially designed to produce female plants. Properly produced feminized seeds should net female plants roughly 95 percent of the time. They also tend to grow more quickly and are less finicky about their grow environments which significantly reduces the likelihood of seedy weed or hermaphroditic plants.

Many different methods have been used to produce female seeds in the past, many of which involve the stressing of female plants to encourage pollen production. Though previous methods have increased the likelihood of hermaphroditic qualities being passed down through generations, new methods involving different types of silver have been effective at eliminating such outcome.

Auto-flowering Seeds:

Auto-flowering seeds are a product of genetic manipulation, as well, but their goal is different: by cross-breeding various cannabis strains with cannabis ruderalis strains, breeders have been able to create cannabis strains that automatically flower after only three weeks. Of course, because of their ruderalis heritage, these plants grow much smaller than other strains (they usually top out at less than two feet, in fact) and fare well in outdoor environments where a variable light cycle will not affect them.

Because they flower automatically, these strains can usually produce two full harvests within a single grow season. Clones cannot be taken from auto-flowering plants, however, so multiple seeds will be required for multiple harvests.

Auto-flower seeds cannot be cloned, choose feminized or traditional seeds if you want to clone your plants.

Everything You Need To Know About Different Types Of Cannabis Seeds

Cannabis cultivation can be complicated, especially if you don’t already have commercial growing experience. There are light cycles, humidity, watering schedules, pesticides, and harvest dates all to consider. However, the arguably most important decision takes place before ever planting.

Growing marijuana plants starts with selecting the right seeds for your operation. Choosing the wrong seeds could have disastrous results depending on a cultivator’s overall goals. Here’s a brief overview of the common types of marijuana seeds and how to use them.

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How Cannabis Reproduces

First, it’s essential to understand how cannabis reproduction takes place. Cannabis is a dioecious plant, which means both male and female versions of the plant exist. When growing male and female weed plants together, male cannabis plants pollinate females, causing them to produce seeds.

In the wild, this ensures the plant propagates. However, cultivators attempting to grow potent marijuana will want to avoid pollination. The high-quality buds available in modern dispensaries are known as sensimilla, which means without seeds. These are female plants that haven’t been pollinated. By avoiding the fertilization process, sensimilla plants grow to produce more resin and, therefore, more overall cannabinoids and terpenes. If you’re growing dispensary-grade marijuana, it’s essential to remove any male plants from your crop before they have an opportunity to pollinate. One way to avoid male plants is to use feminized seeds.

What Are Feminized Cannabis Seeds?

Female plants will attempt to pollinate themselves by growing characteristically male pollen sacs if left in a flowering state for too long. Using the pollen from these hermaphroditic plants to flower other female plants is known as rodelization, and it can help eliminate the potential for male plants. A female plant pollinated from a hermaphroditic female will produce feminized seeds—seeds extremely unlikely to carry male genetics.

Another way cultivators create feminized seeds is by spraying their female plants with a chemical called colloidal silver or silver thiosulfate, which encourages the plant to develop pollen sacs.

Whether you create your own feminized seeds or purchase them from wherever you buy cannabis seeds, remember that feminization is not fool-proof. Feminized seeds may still occasionally produce male plants, so be on the lookout to ensure an overlooked male plant doesn’t pollinate your entire crop.

What Are Autoflowering Cannabis Seeds?

Most cannabis plants are photoperiod, meaning that they require specific light cycles to transition from their vegetative stage to their flowering stage. This is done either by seasonal outdoor planting (typically starting around April) or through artificial light manipulation indoors.

However, autoflowering seeds will move to their flowering stage upon maturity, regardless of the light cycle. Autoflowering seeds come from a rare strain of cannabis called cannabis ruderalis, which evolved in northern climates with long summer days. Ruderalis plants typically have lower cannabinoid percentages, so most autoflowering seeds are crossed with a conventional sativa or indica strain.

Autoflowering seeds generally produce smaller plants that have lower total yields, but for some cultivators, this is outweighed by the benefit of reliable harvest times and the ability to grow outdoors year-round.

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How To Germinate Seeds

Regardless of whether a cultivator uses regular, feminized, or autoflowering seeds, cannabis seeds need to be germinated before planting.

Seed germination refers to the process by which a seed sprouts. For many plants, seeds will germinate after being planted. However, germinating cannabis seeds requires a special approach since the seeds are so fragile.

There are several ways to germinate weed seeds. The cheapest and easiest way to do this is by placing your seeds between two moist paper towels and letting them sit in a warm location for a few days. You’ll know the seed is ready once it sprouts a white tail.

What Are Cannabis Clones

Not all commercial cannabis plants come from seeds. Sometimes, cultivators can create a clone.

It starts by taking a clipping from an existing cannabis plant. Then, that plant is transplanted into new soil, where it can take root and create an entirely new plant. Plants that are grown in this method will be genetically identical to the original plant that it was clipped from. Not only does cloning plants help save money on seeds, but it also allows cultivators to replicate desirable genetic profiles more consistently.

Tips For How To Grow Marijuana

Once you’ve selected the seeds that will best fit your operation, following these four tips can help maximize yields and better your chances for a successful harvest.

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