Regular seed produces both male and female plants, so growers must spend time weeding out the males. This wastes water, nutrients, and space in the grow room.
Growers use regular seeds to create new strains by crossing different specimens. This enables them to create offspring that exhibit the desired traits, such as a particular flavour profile or colouring.
As the name suggests regular seeds produce both male and female plants. This can be a bit of a pain for some growers who want a 100% female crop as the chances of getting a mix of male and female plants is higher than with feminized seed.
Feminized seeds are ideal for commercial growers who want a specific ratio of female to male plants. However, there are many growers who enjoy breeding their own cultivars and like the idea of working with natural cannabis plants rather than feminized ones.
To breed your own strain you need to harvest pollen from a male plant, and then transfer it to a female plant to trigger fertilization. The key is to make sure you sterilize the pollen before transferring it, and that you have a system for tracking and recording your results. This will help you get the best out of your next crop of breeding seeds. As a result, you’ll have the best possible chance of creating your perfect strain.
Clones are rootless branches taken from a vegetating mother plant and replanted to grow roots and mature into a cannabis plant with the same genetic information as the parent. Growing with clones is fast, fun and can be more reliable than seeds. However, it requires more experience to get the best results.
Seeds take longer to sprout and mature into harvestable plants. They also have a 50/50 chance of growing male plants, which can be undesirable for consumption. Seeds require more attention than clones, including regular checking for germination and maintaining optimal temperatures.
Clones are delicate and can die if they don’t have a proper growing environment. They can also inherit undesired traits from their mothers, such as genetic mutations or other environmental stressors like pests and disease. The best way to avoid this is by choosing healthy, sturdy mother plants. They should be strong enough to withstand the cutting process and produce dense buds.
When a bee collects pollen from the anther of one flower it then carries it to the stigma of another flower, fertilizing the ovary and allowing seeds to develop. This is called pollination and it’s essential to ensuring the growth of most fruit, seed, fiber, hay and feed crops, as well as for the advancement of plant breeding programs.
The fertilization of an egg cell in the ovary of a flower can be derived from sperm cells originating on the same plant, in which case fertilization is said to have occurred by self-pollination (autogamy). However, most plants require cross-pollination for successful development of seeds, as the resulting offspring tends to better adapt to changing environmental conditions than offspring of individuals subject to self-pollination alone.
Until recently most growers only grew female cannabis plants, but since the invention of feminized and autoflowering seeds it has become possible to obtain male cannabis plants for pollination purposes as well. Male plants appear as rounded pear-shaped bags from which white stigmas emerge, which many people call “little hairs”.
When a seed germinates, it forms a single root, branches out and develops leaves. After a month, it is ready to start flowering.
Growing regular seeds requires a lot of patience, but it is an excellent way to learn the whole process and build up experience. Many seasoned growers even recommend it to newcomers.
However, feminized seeds have gained popularity in recent years and now occupy a large share of the market. Feminized plants produce only female plants, making them perfect for commercial growers who want to ensure a ratio of female to male flowers. To identify whether a cannabis seed is regular or feminized, look for two letters stamped on each side of the seed, followed by a three-digit number. The numbers 11 or 22 indicate that it is a feminized seed. The letters mean the variety of seed, and the number indicates the total quantity of seeds in a packet. The number must be equal to or greater than the minimum purchase amount.