|When you first get into growing marijuana, you are going to spend so much time focused on gathering supplies for your setup that you may forget all about the most important ingredient until the very last minute – your marijuana seeds!|
Assuming you have a fair bit of experience with cannabis, you already know that there are numerous different strains of marijuana. You may already have a pretty good idea what you are looking for in that case – but if you are a total newbie, you may be clueless where to start.
Well, by the time you finish this article, you will know exactly what to shop for. I am going to introduce you to the most common types of marijuana seeds out there as well as some of the more specialized strains. Let’s check it out.
Regular Cannabis Seeds
Let’s start with the most basic type of seed: regular cannabis. These seeds are exactly what they sound like – they are normal cannabis seeds which may be either male or female. If you buy them, you will likely get a mix – probably roughly 50/50. They have not been altered in any way, and are totally natural.
Even though regular cannabis seeds are easy to come by, their popularity has waned next to feminized cannabis seeds, which I will introduce you to below. Feminized cannabis seeds produce only female plants, which can make your life a lot simpler (I will explain why in a moment).
So why are regular cannabis seeds still sold? They do offer a few advantages:
- They are less expensive than feminized seeds.
- They can produce taller plants (according to a study by High Times) – though actually less bud (which isn’t so great).
- Their genetic makeup may be more consistent, but this is under debate.
If you do invest in regular cannabis seeds, here are a few things you should know:
- You will end up with plenty of male plants. If you leave them in the room with the female plants, they will end up fertilizing them. This is an issue since fertilization reduces the THC production of the female plants.
- Regular cannabis seeds sometimes need more meticulous care during the growth phase.
The Bottom Line: Regular cannabis seeds are not the best option for beginners – feminized seeds are better. But they are not a bad starting point either. Just keep in mind they will be more work.
Feminized Cannabis Seeds
These are the most popular types of cannabis seeds, especially for beginners. As the name of these seeds implies, these seeds are almost exclusively female.
The reason feminized seeds are a big deal is that they virtually eliminate the problem of fertilization. When a female cannabis plant is fertilized by a male or hermaphroditic plant, this siphons energy away from THC production. This means that the plant produces significantly less THC, to the point where the yield is essentially worthless.
Depending on the mix you get, you might end up with anywhere from 90-99% female plants, with the occasional male or hermaphroditic plant cropping up now and again. If you do spot a male or hermaphroditic plant, you need to remove it straight away. You might think a single male plant is no big deal, but it can actually fertilize all the female plants you have. That means that you would lose your entire crop.
So now you can understand why regular cannabis seeds can be inconvenient. You have to sort through all the plants carefully, removing every male and hermaphroditic plant you come across – which could easily be around half. With the feminized seeds, this problem doesn’t exist. Aside from the occasional male or hermaphrodite, you will have nothing but the females that you want.
Marijuana plants grown from feminized seeds tend to be less finicky than regular marijuana seeds as well. So they are a little more forgiving of mistakes involving lighting, temperature and humidity.
Curious how feminized seeds are created? There are a couple of methods:
- Sometimes a female plant is kept in the flowering stage for longer than usual. After a couple of weeks, it creates pollen, which can be used to fertilize another female. This results in feminized seeds.
- A different method is to spray a flowering female plant with colloidal silver for two weeks. Reacting to the solution, it starts producing pollen, which again can be used to fertilize another female plant.
Eventually, you may even be able to do this yourself if you want to create your own feminized marijuana seeds.
Autoflowering Cannabis Seeds
Another popular type of cannabis seed which is great for beginners is the autoflowering variety. These seeds “automatically” start flowering after a certain amount of time in the vegetative growth phase. They do this regardless of light exposure. Usually you can harvest them within around 10 weeks of starting out.
There are a couple of good things about autoflowering cannabis seeds:
- The male plants are usually less problematic. They are not as likely to fertilize the females. You should still remove them, but if you miss one, it is less likely to ruin your yield. Note that if you shop around, you can also sometimes find autoflowering feminized seeds. These of course are the best of both worlds.
- You can get the lighting wrong and still get a yield. The plants will shift to the flowering stage. That being said, you should still try and get the lighting as optimal as possible, because that will result in a much better yield.
Basically, autoflowering cannabis is easy to raise, but if you want the best results, you should still aim to be as painstaking as you would be with other types of seeds. If you make a mistake though, you are less likely to pay for it.
The Bottom Line: Like feminized seeds, autoflowering cannabis seeds are an excellent option for beginners. They require significantly less maintenance than regular cannabis seeds and are relatively forgiving of mishaps.
High THC Cannabis Seeds
Now that you know about regular cannabis seeds, feminized seeds, and autoflowering seeds, let’s move away from seeds that were developed for convenience, and take a look at those which were developed to result in a specific type of yield.
The chemical compound in marijuana which gives you a high is called tetrahydrocannabinol, or “THC.” You want a fair amount of THC in your cannabis regardless, but exactly how much depends on your preferences and what you hope to use your cannabis for.
If you do want a really intense high, then you are going to want high concentrations of THC, and one way to get that is to go with high THC seeds. High THC seeds have been bred specifically for this purpose.
Keep in mind that does not meant you can take a half-baked approach with these seeds and still expect an amazing yield. To really get resinous buds packed with THC, you need to work hard to optimize the conditions and the timing for germinating your seeds, growing your weed, and harvesting it.
The Bottom Line: If your goal is to get the ultimate intense high through concentrated THC, try high TCH seeds.
High CBD Cannabis Seeds
If you are looking to grow cannabis for medical marijuana use, what you need are seeds which are high in cannabidiol, or “CBD.” It is CBD which provides most of the therapeutic benefits of cannabis, helping to alleviate anxiety and relieve pain.
Buds which contain a high ratio of CBD to THC produce a relaxing effect. The high is less intense, but the therapeutic benefits are more pronounced (indeed, CBD actually inhibits the effects of THC to some degree).
One thing which is useful to know while you are shopping for high CBD cannabis seeds is that it takes a much smaller percentage of CBD content to constitute “high” levels than it does THC. A plant which contains 0-5% THC is considered to have “minimum” THC levels. THC levels are usually only considered high if they are over 15%. But with CBD, 1-5% is considered “medium.” 5% or more is considered “high.”
That being said, the demand for high CBD seeds is surging ever higher as the benefits of CBD oil become better known. That means you may actually find high CBD seeds these days with a 1:1 ratio of CBD to THC. Some even contain more CBD than THC.
The Bottom Line: If you want to maximize the medicinal benefits of the pot you are growing, look for high CBD seeds.
Indoor seeds is actually an entire overarching category which contains numerous subcategories.
- Indoor high THC seeds
- Indoor high CBD seeds
- Indoor feminized seeds
- Indoor regular seeds
- Indoor autoflowering seeds
… And so on. Basically, indoor seeds are any type of cannabis seeds which have been optimized to grow inside under controlled conditions. Most people grow marijuana indoors these days, so these are most of the seeds you will find for sale.
The Bottom Line: Most of the seeds you can buy are optimized for indoor planting, regardless of whether they are regular, feminized, or some other variety.
Conversely, outdoor seeds are any seeds which have been optimized to grow outside. As with indoor seeds, these can include regular seeds, feminized seeds, and others.
If you are going to plant cannabis outdoors, you need to keep in mind the climate. One awesome thing about pot is that it can grow in a wide variety of conditions. But you do need to shop for a strain which can thrive in your climate. So make sure you check to see what kind of moisture, sunlight and temperatures different strains of outdoor seeds can thrive in before you make your purchase.
The Bottom Line: Outdoor cannabis seeds are popular despite the fact that indoor seeds are more widespread. Makes sure you purchase a strain which has been bred for your climate.
|There are a number of worldwide competitions held on an annual basis to determine the best strains for high THC, high CBD, and other characteristics.
There are also publications which give out awards. Sometimes the awards are determined by the editorial staff, while other times the winners are selected by a vote from readers.
What is awesome is that you can buy these cup winners and grow them yourself! This is a great way to know for sure that you are getting high quality cannabis. Just be aware that some strains may be easy to grow while others may pose more of a challenge.
The Bottom Line: If you want the highest quality cannabis seeds, look for cup winners. These are strains which have received widespread recognition.
Finally, there are a ton of different specialized strains of cannabis out there that you can grow. While I suggest that you start out with simple feminized seeds, eventually you can expand and grow all different kinds of pot. Here are some examples of more specialized niche strains:
- Big bud seeds: These are cannabis seeds which produce plants with especially big buds.
- Low odor seeds: Don’t want your neighbors smelling your cannabis? Keep the smell down to a minimum with low odor seeds and keep a low profile.
- Short height seeds: Of course, you can literally keep a low profile by purchasing cannabis seeds that produce short plants.
- Hardy cannabis seeds: If you particularly struggle with issues like mold or pests, there are cannabis strains out there which were specifically bred to resist problems like these.
- Cannabis seeds for cold, wet environments: Have a short growing season characterized by less-than-optimal temperatures and/or high levels of moisture? These strains resist mold and rot, and are bred for challenging environments like these.
- Fruity cannabis seeds: These are for growing cannabis which has a fruity flavor and odor profile.
- High yield seeds: Exactly what it sounds like, these are seeds which are known to produce a high yield.
- Northern Lights: This is a specific strain of indica cannabis which has THC levels ranging between 16-31%.
- Fast flowering seeds: Buy these if you want to cut down on your growing time and get right to enjoying your cannabis.
- Indica seeds: Indica is a term used to refer to marijuana which has a sedative, relaxing effect.
- Sativa seeds: This term refers to cannabis with a more invigorating effect.
- Indica-sativa hybrid seeds: These seeds produce cannabis which has an effect that is at once invigorating and relaxing.
- Blue cannabis seeds: Specifically, these are usually seeds for Blue Dream, a.k.a. Blueberry Haze. This popular sativa-dominant hybrid has been around since 2003, and reportedly contains around 25% THC and 2% CBD. It is loved by fans for its potency and flavor.
- Purple cannabis seeds: These seeds produce plants with purplish leaves. There are quite a few different purple cannabis strains, many of them indica or indica hybrids.
- White cannabis seeds: White cannabis, also known as “Triangle Kush,” is an indica dominant hybrid. The buds are coated in white dew thanks to the super high THC content—up to 28%. This type of cannabis has a piney scent and flavor.
- White Widow seeds: This is one of the most popular strains of cannabis available since the early 90s. It is a sativa indica hybrid balanced slightly in favor of sativa effects. The THC content ranges from 18-25%, while the CBD content is 1%. It is practically ubiquitous in the Netherlands, and can now be purchased online around the world.
- Cheese seeds: This indica strain has a fruity flavor and comes from the UK. It is another strain with higher THC levels (anywhere from 15-20%) and low levels of CBD (under 1%).
- Kush seeds: These seeds produce Kush cannabis, which takes its name from the Hindu Kush mountains on the border of Pakistan and Afghanistan. This type of cannabis is deep green and may have purplish tones. The aroma is usually described as piney, herbaceous and earthy with floral and fruity notes. It is a hybrid which is indica dominant.
Finally, there are strains of cannabis which combine various traits. For example:
- Feminized autoflowering
- Hardy feminized seeds
- Feminized high THC seeds
So if you shop around, you can find the perfect cannabis seeds for your needs.
Germinating Your Cannabis Seeds
Once you have your seeds, how can you germinate them properly?
Here are the basic steps:
- Get a piece of paper towel moist, but not soaking wet. Set it down on a plate.
- Set the seeds down on top of the paper towel. Put some space between them.
- Get a couple more pieces of paper towel moist, and set those on top.
- Get another plate and set it down on top of the paper towels, but turn it upside down. It will block out the light, but leave a little room inside for the seeds.
- Make sure that the seeds are in a warm environment. 21 degrees Celsius is a suitable temperature. Keep them away from direct sunlight however so they do not overheat.
- Check on your seeds daily. If you notice the paper towels are drying out, use a spray bottle to moisten them again. Remember, do not drown the seeds.
- Around the third day, it is possible that you will see some of the seeds starting to crack open and root. If they do not, be patient. It could take up to two weeks.
- Wait for the roots to reach several millimeters in length.
- Once the roots are long enough, you can plant the seeds in soil. Each one should have the root pointing downward, and should itself be a few millimeters down.
- Wait patiently for 1-3 days. If you have done everything right, you should see some seedlings starting to appear!
|As you can see, it is not too challenging.
I recommend using these inexpensive seedling starter trays. Enough for 144 seedlings, they come with drainage holes and plant labels. They are well made and you can reuse them.
Where Can You Buy High Quality Cannabis Seeds?
Now you are an expert on shopping for cannabis seeds, and you are all ready to start germinating and growing them. You know the easiest strains for beginners to grow, and you are familiar with some of the other strains you can attempt to grow once your skills have budded (pun intended).
|So where can you get high quality cannabis seeds?
I suggest Seedsman. I am a huge fan of this company – they package discretely, ship swiftly, and have a loyalty program and a ton of great promotions (you can routinely get up to 20% off). There are a ton of payment options and currencies accepted, including bitcoin.
The feminized and autoflowering seeds Seedsman offers are great for beginners, and they also sell high THC seeds, high CBD seeds, cup winners and more. Check out their full selection here, and enjoy growing your first cannabis plants!