If you are looking to enter the world of cannabis breeding, you will realize that cannabis plants are actually very complex. Unlike normal plants, breeding with cannabis is not easy given the different treatments made available, such as backcrossing or direct crossing, just to make each type of cannabis different.
What are the different cannabis seeds?
Marijuana seeds are very diverse – they are available in four different categories: regular, CBD, feminized, and autoflowering. Feminimized and autoflowering seeds are the most popular ones being used among cannabis growers. But before we dive further into understanding what is autoflowering feminized seeds, let us take time to know the other two kinds of seeds available – Regular and CBD.
Just as nature intended, cannabis plants are predominantly dioecious, which means that male and female plants grow on separate plants. Their seeds will have a 50% chance of becoming a male or female plant. If you are new to the cannabis growing community and would prefer genetically sturdy clones, then regular seeds are the way to go. Breeders who are looking to create new strains also prefer regular seeds. They need both males, to produce pollens and fertilize the females, and females, to create the next generation.
Cannabidiol, abbreviated CBD, cannabis strains are known to provide clear-headed effects with an extensive range of medicinal benefits. CBD seeds are generally non-psychoactive and appear to be the antagonist of the stimulating effects of THC or Tetrahydrocannabinol ingredients.
So, what is autoflowering feminized seeds?
The concept behind autoflowering seeds is simple. As the name suggests, the plants will grow and flower on their own time after a relatively short vegetative state, without requiring a change in their light cycles or photoperiod. This characteristic is present in the genetics of the Cannabis Ruderalis, a subspecies of the cannabis plant. When a marijuana breeder crosses a Ruderalis strain with an Indica or Sativa variety, the offspring will automatically exhibit the traits of an autoflowering strain. This means they will flower depending on their age.
These seeds come with a number of advantages over regular seeds. Because these seeds create buds in a shorter time than regular cannabis plants, breeders will not have to worry about light supplementation to achieve multiple harvests. These plants are also perfect for closet or stealth cannabis growing where discretion is required from the police, interfering neighbors, and thieves.
Feminized seeds, also referred to as female seeds, were specifically bred to eliminate male flowers and maximize the chances of germinating female-only plants. Cannabis breeding has greatly evolved in recent years, and many growers are now able to enjoy strains that can offer up to 99% chances of getting an exclusively female crop.
Most breeders look for female flowers because, when left unfertilized, they produce cannabis buds, which are used to smoke, extract, vaporize, or sell. Unpollinated female flowers focus all their energy and resources on creating buds with higher levels of THC or CBD concentrations, which determines the recreational and medicinal potentials of the plant.
What is autoflowering feminized seeds?
Autoflowering feminized seeds combine both characteristics of an autoflowering seed and a feminized seed. These seeds ensure that there are only fast-growing and bud-producing female plants in the garden, making them the absolute preference to many marijuana growers.
These seeds have come a long way despite many growers still opting to refrain from using these seeds due to their history of subpar performance. But before you turn your backs on these seeds, here are the many advantages of using autoflowering feminized seeds:
- Cultivation ensures the elimination of unnecessary work such as scoping for and pruning male plants that ultimately needs to be discarded. Studies have shown that pollen from these males can drift across up to 7.5 miles, or even 30 miles in high winds. Thus, removing males is an important step to ensure that all the female plants grow abundant, seedless buds. With autoflowering feminized seeds, this concern or fear is eliminated.
- Additionally, autoflowers can tolerate light leaks, which are, for photoperiodic plants, generally forms of stress. And we all know that stress will result in higher male development. With this trait, added to the very low frequency of feminized seeds becoming hermaphrodites, breeders will enjoy the results from their unfertilized female plants.
- Autoflowering feminized seeds guarantee higher yields of psychoactive weed as each and every plant in the available growing space is producing buds in a significantly short period. A sooner harvest also means that you can fit multiple harvests into a season, as opposed to fitting only one harvest per season. These seeds are usually ready for harvest within eight to ten weeks after germination in comparison to photoperiodic cannabis plants that can take over four months to reach full maturity.
- These seeds are robust thanks to the genetic inheritance of Ruderalis in them. Plants become naturally resilient to colder climates and many diseases. This trait can easily be passed down to the next generation, which is particularly attractive for those who are still new to the cannabis growing community.
- In the case of cannabis plants, it is always best to remember that taller isn’t necessarily better. Often, autoflowering feminized seeds produce plants that stay shorter, which means growing and managing them is easier in all kinds of settings. In addition, when it comes to the flavor and quality, prizes are often handed out to buds coming from smaller plants.
- Lastly, its Cannabis Ruderalis lineage generally comes with a higher concentration of CBD, making these seeds and their buds valuable for cannabis patients seeking relief from a variety of ailments.
Now that we know the answer to what is autoflowering feminized seeds, it is unlikely that you will have to worry about growing these seeds. But still the same, it is important to get seeds only from trusted suppliers who are known for their top-quality seeds. Many stories continue to emerge about inconsistent breeding processes that have resulted in growing intersex or hermaphrodite plants from a group of autoflower seeds. In this case, you also have to arm yourself with the knowledge of identifying hermaphrodite plants.
Autoflowering feminized genetics are getting more and more recognition in the cannabis world as of late. And rightly so, thanks to the many advantages that they can offer to breeders around the world – larger harvests, less hassle, more manageability, among others. This innovation is definitely one of the sure signs of a brighter cannabis future.