Imagine you’re a baker. Every day you bake hundreds of loaves of bread from the same bag of flour, but every day you have to toss half of your product. You still have to purchase flour, but suddenly there’s a 50% chance that your loaf just won’t turn out. Sound like the worst business model ever? Well, that’s because it kind of is.
Without buying feminized seeds to start your crop with, this exact thing can happen with your marijuana plant production business. If you’re just planning on growing a plant or two for at home use, this may admittedly not apply to you, but for anything past that, feminized seeds are a must.
Let us explain…
To get an intimate and authoritative perspective on how exactly feminized seeds can save 50% of your crop, we snagged the ear of a seed expert at High Supplies, an online feminized seed dispensary based out of The Netherlands that has been helping people produce incredible crops since 2006. “Before you can really understand by feminized seeds are so important, you have to understand some basics about marijuana crop production.
Not all cannabis plants are created equal. In fact, gender plays an extremely large role in what a plant will, or will not, produce. “Generally, if you pick up any old seeds, or get a few from friends, there is a 50% that the seed will be male.” She says. Male seeds produce male plants. There’s no accurate way to sex plants prior to their “pre-flowering” stage. “You can’t just really go to a seed and expect to see identifying sex organs.” She continues. To get to the pre-flowering stage, you have grown your seedling for about 3-4 weeks for males, or 4-6 weeks for females.
Pre-flowers are tiny nubs that grow at the junction between the plants stalk and it’s leave stem. The main difference between male and female pre-flowers are that males appear to have a small ball-like shape, where females tend to be more tear drop shaped, as well as grow wispy, white hairs from their pre-flower buds.
“If you don’t catch the plants sex at this age, you’ll get a chance to a bit later, so don’t worry about it too much.” The spokesperson says, “while it’s super important to keep an eye on them, don’t stress if you can’t reliably identify the sex of your plant at 8 weeks.” As the plants continue to grow, females will begin to sprout those little hairs, which will become strikingly apparent. While male plants will stay woefully plain looking. As male plants develop, the small ball-like pollen sacks will continue to swell. If given enough time the pollen sacks will explode, dropping the pollen onto the plants leaves ready to be scattered by the wind.
Unfortunately, if male plants are allowed mature to the point where their pollen sacks bursts, and the female plant is pollinated, the female plant will then begin to produce seeds which will diminish the overall yield of your crop. So, to deter this from happening, you have to make sure that no male plants (unless you’re trying to produce seeds over cannabis) are within the same crops as your females. “So, if 50% of your seed stash produces male plants, you’re out 50% of your crop.” The seed expert delicately reminds us.
One of the major factors in choosing the right cannabis seeds isn’t only down to ensuring you have the best crop yield you can create. In fact, you have to seriously consider what kind of crop you will create. The two main strains of cannabis that are widely distributed and available are Indicas and Sativas. Choosing between the two (or taking the mid ground and growing both), can be difficult but will ultimately help you select the cannabis seeds that will best fit your ideal crop.
Indica strains are known as a much more relaxed state of being. Commonly referred to as “in da couch” by its more dedicated fans. Indica is the preferred strain when the user is looking for a more mellow time.
Sativa strains are in strict opposition to the Indica cousins. Sativas are imbued with energy and have most people feeling motivated and ready for some extreme tasking.
Outside of their perceived effects, these two strains also have to significantly different growing patterns. Sativa seeds that quite a bit longer to grow and are fairly finicky about their growing conditions. The Indica strain on the other hand is much quicker to grow and also is a bit easier to manage. So, the Indica strain is pretty ideal for novice growers and consumers alike.
As with all other things, it’s massively important to be informed about what it is you’re buying, how you grow it, and most importantly who it is you’re purchasing from. Always make sure that you know where your seeds are coming from and that you can verify and trust the product that you’re getting. It’s always a good idea to do a bit of research before you buy any set up. There are plenty of books and articles that can give you better direction on how to grow your ideal crops. Just make sure you get the right seeds.