Logically, the vast number of cannabis strains could only mean one thing. The existence of a variety of marijuana seeds. One of the varieties is the feminized version of cannabis seeds. As we all know, the typical plant has male and female variants. Although they both look the same when they are young, the female variant is distinguished by its production of buds.
Male cannabis plants produce cavities in their reproductive system (anther). These cavities are termed pollen sacks. Apart from these observable differences, you can ascertain whether they are male or female by conducting a genetic test.
Growing male plants amongst your female plants significantly reduce their yield and leave them with seedy buds. According to Herbies, half of the regular cannabis seeds end up as male plants. This means that you would have to toss up half of the plants once they start flowering.
What are feminized seeds?
Feminized seeds are simply the result of two female plants being bred together. This process causes all offspring to be female meaning that every plant produces buds.
Hence, while regular seeds produce female plants half of the time, feminized seeds ONLY produce female plants.
How can you create feminized seeds?
Growers usually adopt a forceful technique in creating feminized seeds. These techniques involve growers forcing female plants to manufacture pollen sacs like their male counterparts.
The feminized pollen created is then used to fertilize another female plant. The resulting seeds will only produce female plants.
What methods are involved in forcing a female plant to make pollen?
There are two major ways to stimulate the production of pollen:
1. Chemically induced feminized pollination
This option is highly recommended as it conforms to industry ethics and practice. Most breeders and seedbanks adopt this method in selling feminized seeds to the public.
Substances that interact with plant processes (particularly cell division/ growth) are inseminated into female plant bud sites.
Substances such as colloidal silver or gibberellic acid are added to the bud site of the female plant during the flowering phase.
Hence, the bud sites are drenched daily in these hormonal compounds for the first 3-4 weeks after the switch to 12/12. The 12/12 lighting structure (usually defined in terms of time) is an indication of the commencement of the flowering phase.
The first 12 signifies the light needed for the vegetative phase of the cannabis. The other 12 represent the amount of time the cannabis strain should be deprived of light to trigger flowering.
Doing this allows a female plant to produce pollen sacs that release feminized pollen when they open up. This pollen is used on another female plant to produce feminized seeds.
Although this process is natural, it is deemed ineffective. Rhodelizatiom occurs when female flowers self pollinates out of stress usually during the end of their life-cycle. This self-pollination process usually involves the growth of male sacs. While this method produces feminized seeds as the first, there is a high risk of the production of hermaphroditic seeds. Hence, it is not surprising to find seedy grains in the plant buds.
How to make feminized seeds with colloidal silver
First off, you need colloidal silver. You can purchase this compound from health stores where they are usually sold as dietary supplements. You can also explore the DIY option. This option is cost-effective and is easy to carry out provided you have the appropriate materials.
You should note that Colloidal silver is simply silver suspended in water. The first thing you would need is crystal clear water. The water used must be pure so you should make use of distilled water.
Ensure that the silver you are using satisfies ISO criteria in terms of purity and other factors. You should also ascertain the added silver concentration of the water.
You should note that it is advisable to purchase this compound rather than trying to make it; as a result of proportionality issues.
Once you have your colloidal silver, here’s what to do next:
- Spray the bud sites of your known female plants during the first 3-4 weeks of the flowering stage. This means that you should spray the bad sites of your plants only after you have initiated the 12/12 light schedule.
- Harvest feminized pollen: A sign that pollen sacs are ready for harvesting is that they become swollen like balloons. After this swelling, the pollen sacs start to open up. Do not be in a haste to immediately harvest. Continue spraying the bud until the sacs open up or you might end up with empty pollen sacs.
When the pollen sacs have opened up, you can gather them. On gathering them, you let them dry for a week. At this point, they can be placed in a bag and shaken to collect all the pollens.
- Pollinate another female plant: All that is required of you during this phase is to use the gathered pollens to pollinate another plant. However, the plant about to be pollinated must have been flowering for about 2-3 weeks. To ascertain if the plant is ready for pollination, you should look for a white hair-like structure on the buds.
You can pollinate the original plant if you want to but this is not advisable. This is because pollinating a bud in its late flowering stage doesn’t produce a lot of seeds since the timing doesn’t match up. Doing this would be counter-productive as every action is targeted at getting more feminized seeds to be pollinated.
- Wait 6 weeks after pollination to harvest seeds: One sure indication of harvest readiness is the swelling and fattening of the bud’s calyxes.
Despite the intensity of physical efforts needed to harvest these seeds, the benefits of feminized seeds can’t be sidelined. Growers particularly have a penchant for these seeds because of their High THC and CBD content. According to Highway420, the availability of feminized seeds varieties makes it a coveted option in the cannabis seed market. Feminized seeds have varieties over regular cultivars. You have the luxury of choice as feminized seeds have auto-flowering, CBD dominant, and photoperiod variants.