For growers who enjoy crossing plants and creating their own cultivars regular seed are an essential product. Unlike feminized seeds which produce only female plants, regular seeds have a 50/50 chance of producing either male or female plants.
This gives the grower the option of culling out male plants and concentrating on their desired results.
Breeding is a popular pastime for cannabis enthusiasts and can be used to create strains with specific flavour profiles, colours or potency levels. Growers and breeders use regular seeds to cross male and female plants to produce offspring with desirable characteristics.
The process of breeding a plant involves growing a selection of male and female plants and selecting the best specimens for the job. This can be done through a number of methods, such as looking for plants that have good resin production on their stems or for the strongest terpene odour.
Unlike feminized seeds, regular cannabis seeds operate as nature intended. They have a 50% chance of emerging as either a male or female plant, which is important for breeders who want to create new cultivars and produce better-quality clones. Growers also benefit from a predominately female crop by not having to deal with unwanted male plants. This allows them to focus on achieving high yields and improved quality from their crop.
Clones are a great option for growers who want to keep a genetic lineage alive, but they can also bring in new pests and pathogens that could affect the entire garden. They’re also not immune to the same issues that plague seeds: genetic variation can lead to a range of plant sizes and yields, as well as different effects and flavors.
Seeds, on the other hand, offer more variety. You can find many strains in stores, dispensaries and on the Internet. Many experienced growers claim that growing from seed results in stronger, more pest resistant plants that grow faster and produce larger buds than clones.
It takes a bit more skill to germinate seeds, but it’s not insurmountable by a novice. Just be sure to have the right growing medium, and a way of keeping them constantly moist. Seeds also tend to grow sturdier tap roots than clones, which can result in a faster harvest.
As with all seed, storage conditions have a significant impact on their viability. A seed’s shelf life is defined by three factors: temperature, moisture, and oxygen. Seeds that are stored in moist, warm, or light conditions will deteriorate more quickly than those kept in dry, dark, or cool storage.
It is always a good idea to store your seeds in an airtight, light-proof container. The packaging they come in is ideal, but a glass jar or plastic container will work too. Make sure it is not too large and that it has a tight lid.
For extra security, add silica gel sachets to your storage containers. This will reduce moisture and prevent mold from growing on the seeds. Many growers have a fridge or freezer that they use exclusively for storing their seed, as this will help to stabilise the temperature and prevent rapid fluctuations. This can also prevent the seeds from feeling shock when they are withdrawn for germination.
Growing regular seed allows you to choose which plants are male and which are female, a process known as sexing. Male plants are discarded while pollen is collected from the females to create new seed stock.
Depending on the genetics of your plant, you may need to reduce the light hours in order to initiate flowering. Some strains may even be autoflowering and require no change in light hours as they move into the flowering phase.
The seeds can be collected from the flimsy material around the flower head when it has burst open (indehiscent). A fan is useful for winnowing small seeds while a strainer with holes of a suitable size for the larger seeds can be used to sift them out. These can then be stored and replanted in future grows.