When choosing your cannabis seeds it is essential to know what type you are buying. Feminized and regular seeds both have their advantages and disadvantages, depending on the purpose of your crop.
Growers who enjoy breeding their own strains will most likely purchase regular seed. This is because male plants can be distinguished from female plants and pollen is removed.
Typically, breeders produce regular seeds by backcrossing a clone several times. This technique creates offspring that are as close to the clone as possible. It also produces a diverse range of phenotypes for growers to experiment with.
Another method to obtain regular seed is by reversing the plant sex. This involves spraying a female plant with chemicals that make it grow male pollen sacs.
This method makes it much easier to produce feminized seeds. However, it can be more difficult to get reliable genetic stability without mutation. It can take up to twelve generations to achieve stable, desirable cannabis traits. This is why you should only buy from reputable, experienced breeders with great customer service and lots of awards (like cannabis cups) to prove it.
While feminised seeds are all the rage, many cannabis cultivators still choose regular seed. This is because growing regulars gives the grower the opportunity to experience the entire genetic lineage of a particular cultivar. It also means that the cultivator can see how male plants can influence the female plants and how this impacts on a harvest.
As a result of this, growers who opt for regular seed often find that they are saving money when it comes to purchasing seeds. It is worth noting, however, that growers that select regular seeds will have to spend more time and resources weeding out hermaphrodites. This is because approximately 50% of regular seeds will grow into male plants. This is why it is important to separate male and female plants when working with regular seeds.
Stable Pollination Rates
Pollination rates can be unstable, which can make it hard to achieve consistent results. Using regular seeds eliminates this problem.
The relative contributions of pollen quantity and quality to seed production have rarely been evaluated in tree species. This study investigates both factors in a naturally pollinated population of M. stellata in Burkina Faso. The large floral display of this dichogamous species is expected to facilitate efficient beetle-pollination, but the automimicry system and asynchronous flowering lead to frequent geitonogamy and a high level of pollen shortage (up to 80*8 %).
Ovule survival rate, seed set per fruit and seed weight were significantly lower after self-pollination than hand cross-pollination. These values indicate that selfing reduces fitness up to seed maturation by a combination of insufficient pollen quantity and increased embryo mortality rate due to poor pollen quality.
Regular seeds operate exactly as nature intended. They have a 50% chance of producing male or female plants. Male plants produce pollen sacks while female plants grow buds.
This makes sex determination quick and easy, even for first-time growers. This also gives growers the option to cross strains and create their own cultivars. You could for instance try crossing a fruity indica with an earthy sativa to develop the perfect balanced hybrid.
Cannabis breeding is not a new invention and many experienced growers still prefer to use regular seed. Cloning is also a good way of making an exact genetic copy of a desired plant. This allows for a quicker and easier growing process and is more stable than feminized seed. It is less likely that clones produced from regular seed will turn into hermaphrodites, even when subjected to stress from pruning techniques such as topping, fimming and lollypopping.
A key benefit of regular seed is that it allows growers to make clones. This is important because clones are genetically identical to the parent plant and therefore can be used to reproduce the same characteristics in future plants, such as morphology, colour or potency.
While feminized seeds are incredibly popular, many breeders prefer to work with regular seeds to develop new and interesting strains. The process of creating a new hybrid takes time and requires the careful selection of male and female specimens to create offspring that express the desired characteristics.
Although working with regulars can be a bit of a gamble in terms of male to female ratios and requires the grower to spend some time eliminating male plants, the reward is the potential for a unique, never-before-seen phenotype. This is especially valuable for breeders who seek to create a specific flavour profile or morphology.