So, you’ve decided to grow your own Cannabis. I’ll let you in on a little secret, the fun only begins when you grow your own smoke! Growing the finest homegrown in town starts with sourcing top cannabis seeds. Next is finding the right strain as well as a reputable seedbank.
After years spent consuming and enjoying marijuana its time to take the next step in becoming the ultimate cannabis connoisseur. You are ready to buy cannabis seeds and start growing your own. Start online! Online seed banks are ideal due to the selection, convenience, and privacy they provide. Okay great, but where do you begin? What kind of seeds should you buy? What is the difference between Regular, Feminized and Auto-flowering as well as Cannabis Seeds?
Once you find your strain, then comes buying your cannabis seeds. How do you find a reputable online seed bank? This article will help take you through the process of choosing the best cannabis strain and seedbank for you.
Introduction to Cannabis seeds
The primary method through which cannabis plants reproduce is by cross-pollination which allows seed production. Cannabis seeds are a natural product of the cannabis plant allowing its offspring to carry characteristics from both parents.
Many people don’t know that cannabis is actually dioecious. Meaning that the male and female reproductive organs are respectively on separate plants. To produce amazing, potent cannabis flowers aka smokable bud, the female cannabis plants must be grown separately from male plants. This is to stop pollination which produces unwanted seeds. Because cannabis grows as either a male or female plant, we can isolate the benefits of growing females with or without male interference. Male cannabis plants are really only required for breeding.
Some cannabis plants produce male and female reproductive parts on one single plant, we call these hermaphrodites. This is usually caused by environmental stress or it sits in the structure of the cannabis plant. Often the male part has viable pollen which pollinates the female parts, in turn, produces seeds.
When the seeds have matured the female plants dies and releases the seed to grow. These seeds can also be harvested to make hemp seed oil, food products or even be used for the next season’s crop.
Regular Cannabis Seeds
Regular cannabis seeds have not in any way been optimized by genetic engineering. These are typically the seeds you find in your outdoor bud. The buggers we don’t want. However, there are reputable breeders that sell regular seeds as they do serve their purpose.
Experienced growers could even go as far as to recommend this type of seed to beginners. This is firstly, because novice slip-ups just about everyone makes as part of the learning process shouldn’t be done with expensive feminized seed types. Another great reason for beginner growers is because it gives the first-time grower a better sense of the full cycle of growth. An all-around kind of care that cannabis plant’s needs.
Feminized Cannabis Seeds
Feminized cannabis seeds are made by causing monoecism or hermaphrodite condition. This is achieved in various ways namely
- Spraying the plant with colloidal silver solution,
- Spraying on a gibberellic (not very common).
Feminized seeds only have the female gene and are identical to the self-pollinates female plant. This will not produce any male plants or highly unlikely to. Unfortunately, most unestablished feminized seed breeders do not establish a stable, full-grown mother plant to produce feminized seeds because of time and cost.
Most of the time these seeds turn into hermaphrodite plants which could produce seeds, reducing yield as a whole. When sourcing your feminized seeds remember to look at reputable and well-established breeders such as DNA Genetics, Sensi Seed Bank, Dinafem Seeds and, Humboldt Seed Organization to name a few. All of whom have been in the game for many years and have well-established reputations.
Auto-Flowering Cannabis Seeds
Auto-flowering aka crossed with cannabis ruderalis will begin flowering at a certain age of the plants' life, regardless of the amount the light the plants are getting. When flowering normal cannabis plants, the daily light intake is changed from 18 hours to 12 hours to start the flowering cycle. Breeders have crossed low-THC cannabis plants with more potent strains in order to produce auto-flowering strains.
This is perfect for northern areas that only have short, cold summers. Starting these auto-flowering strains in spring will help your plants consume the maximum amount of sunlight during the flowering stage. These auto-flowering seeds cannot be kept in the vegetative stage.
The Difference Between Clones and Seeds
A clone is a genetically identical cutting from a female cannabis plant. This cutting is placed in a growing medium and accompanied by a rooting agent. Once these roots have grown and are visible through your medium it can be planted and matured into a fully grown identical female cannabis plant.
Just like us, seeds carry DNA from the mother and the father respectively. When this seed is grown it chooses the most dominant DNA in that specific seed. Generally, cannabis farmers will plant many cannabis seeds. They grow them to a certain age and take the male plants away physically. The other option is either a guaranteed feminized seed or a clone from a female mother. Your cannabis plant can then be used as a mother to produce more female cuttings. Select the strongest phenotype.
Buying Cannabis Seeds?
Cannabis seeds can be bought through many online seed banks. Many of these banks are located in the Netherlands and Spain where seeds are legal. For example, it is illegal to bring cannabis seeds into some countries and customs will confiscate them. However, some countries do allow you to grow your own cannabis. South Africa recently now allows cannabis users to grow their own cannabis in the privacy of their own space. Thus, creating a demand for online cannabis seed banks.
When choosing a reputable seedbank remember there are many factors for you to consider. Before you decide on what and where to buy weed seeds consider your location and growing conditions. What will you be working with, as well as the desired effect of the final product? Just to mention a few factors that will determine which strains will be best for you to grow. You’ll also need to think about the current laws where you live. As well as your need for privacy when it comes to placing a transaction and having the product shipped to you.
How To Tell When You Have A High-Quality Seed
The most important factor affecting the quality of cannabis seeds is the maturity at which they were harvested. Cannabis seeds need to be fully developed. Properly storing your seeds is also a huge factor. It's important that they are kept safe from mold and the many other dangerous pathogens that can harm seeds. Store your seeds in a cool, dark place and preferably used within 16 months of harvest. Seeds can also be stored in your fridge in a sealed container, preferably glass, that allows no moisture in for future use.
The genetics of your cannabis seeds is also a very important aspect to consider. Good genetics makes for a good product and good yield. Some breeders will take time to crossbreed and backcross breed in order to stabilize the genetic strain that they want. This is the most common selling seeds around the world due to the potent product that it grows into.
IBL’s are inbred line seeds that have taken up to 10 years to produce/stabilize, these will grow into cannabis plants with very little notable differences. This is only a small part of cannabis banks around the world and is usually bought by cannabis producers.
How To Germinate Cannabis Seeds
There are many modern techniques to germinating cannabis seeds. The easiest way is by placing the seed in growing medium and covering with about 1 cm of soil. Keep the soil moist and at a temperature between 24 and 28 degrees Celcius until it sprouts into a seedling.
Other techniques involve soaking the seed and lightly scuffing the seed covering to ensure that it opens. One can even soak the seeds in a paper towel or cotton wool until you see the epicotyl (small whitetail). Then taking tweezers and gently planting them into seedling soil. There are also small Jiffy pellets made from coco peat or compressed potting soil with a small hole in the middle specifically for the cannabis seed.
See Germination Article for more on the importance of careful cannabis germination and early seedling care.
Stay tuned for more on the Introduction to Cannabis Growing.
Peace and Love