Do Male Or Female Weed Plants Have Seeds

This is what you need to know to distinguish Male, Female and Hermaphrodite cannabis plants in your garden or grow room – and avoid seeds in your harvest. Producing THC the male cannabis plants are essentially useless, so most growers eliminate the majority of their male plants as soon as the stigma pre-flowers

How To Spot: Male, Female and Hermaphrodite Cannabis Plants

You don’t have to be an expert on the plant to at some point have encountered the term ‘feminized’ in relation to cannabis seeds. As the name suggests, this means cannabis plants can be either female or male and in some cases have both sexes. This is what you need to know to spot Male, Female and Hermaphrodite cannabis plants in your garden:

Male Or Female Cannabis Plants

Before we dive into the more complicated matter when it comes to sexing a cannabis plant, let’s start with some basics. Cannabis plants are so called ‘dioecious plants’ (‘di-‘ is ‘two’ in Greek; ‘oikia’ means ‘house’). This means they produce either male of female reproductive organs, known as the flowers. In contrast to ‘monoecious plants’, which produce two different types of flowers on the same plant.

The cannabis plants most consumers know and love are often female. As these are the plants that produce the smokeable flowers – the dried buds – but which can also be grown at home. These weed flowers, buds, or ‘colas’ are covered in trichomes / resin which holds the plant’s active components, like cannabinoids and terpenes. Male cannabis plants however are less popular with consumers, as their only task in life is to release pollen into the air.

Feminized Cannabis Seeds

When pollen from a male cannabis plant reaches a female cannabis flower, the female flower will start producing seeds with traits from both plants involved. That’s great for growers that like crossbreeding strains and develop their own cannabis varieties. But if you’re growing for your personal consumption, you might want to avoid pollination. Not only do seeds add a harsh taste to your smoke. Producing them also takes a lot of energy from the plant. Costly energy that should rather be put into the development of cannabinoids like THC and CBD.

The best thing you can do to guarantee you’ll grow female cannabis plants, is to purchase feminized cannabis seeds. In contrast to regular cannabis seeds, which will grow 50/50 males and females, feminized seeds guarantee for 98% to grow into female cannabis plants.

So even if you use feminized seeds, it is advised to keep a close eye and determine the sex of the plant as soon as you can. As there’s always a small chance at finding a male plant in your garden which could screw up your harvest, or for the plant to turn from female to hermaphrodite and develop both sexes on one cannabis plant; as we’ll explain later on.

Female Cannabis Plants

The sex of cannabis plants can be determined by looking for the first signs of bloom on the plant. These are visible a few days to a week after you switch your light to 12/12 and give your plant the sign to switch from the growth stage to the flowering stage of its life cycle . Outdoors, the same signal is given by nature as soon as the days grow shorter than 14 hours after the summer solstice.

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Female cannabis plants are easy to spot once they start showing the first signs of flowering

Female weed plants are distinguished by the development of bracts with small white hairs (stigma’s) on their nodes. A node is the part of the plant where branches and leaves emerge from the stem. After a while, the female plant starts pushing out more and more of these hairs until they swell up from the bottom up. This means the plant is now forming ‘calyxes’ that eventually stack up to become the flower as we know it.

Pollination And Seeds

These ‘calyxes’ remain empty as long as the plant is not pollinated by a male plant. When it does get pollinated, these calyxes will fill up to hold and protect the plant’s babies: seeds. It is even thought that the resin on weed plants serves only that purpose in nature: to protect the plant’s offspring from burning in the sun.

Discover our Feminized Chocolato cannabis strain (White Choco x Gelato) here!

Male Cannabis Seeds

Male Cannabis Plants are recognized by the formation of pollen sacs on the plant’s nodes. This happens around the same time as female reproductive organs should be forming. Although female plants tend to develop their reproductive organs a bit faster. Luckily, these male pollen sacs can be distinguished pretty easily. As they look like small balls hanging from the side of the plant; instead of the upward facing hairs from the female plant.

Male Cannabis Plants form small ball-shaped pollen sacs on their nodes

When left to grow, these balls will eventually open up like a flower and release pollen into the air. As we’ve explained, this pollen is only interesting when you’re trying to make your own strains or seeds. If you’re not making seeds, make sure to remove every male plant from your garden or grow room before this happens. Do it with the upmost care, as rocking the plant could force it to release the pollen.

Hermaphrodite Cannabis Plants

The first paragraph of this article explains cannabis plants grow only one set of reproductive organs. Although there is still a ‘but’ to this. Because there always remains the possibility that female cannabis plants form male reproductive organs too. This usually happens when the plant(s) experience excessive stress. And in times of stress, they try to guarantee the survival of their species. Cannabis plants can do so by turning hermaphrodite, or ‘herma’ in grower terms.

Hermaphrodite cannabis plants develop both female and male reproductive organs

Because when cannabis plants turn ‘hermaphrodite’, they do so in order to pollinate themselves. Turning hermaphrodite is an evolutionary strategy of cannabis plants, designed to save the species in hard times.It allows the plant to produce seeds no matter what; even when there are no males around (for example, because the source of the ‘stress’ killed off all male plants).

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How To Prevent Stress From Turning Female Cannabis Into Hermaphrodites

Some cannabis strains are more sensitive to stress than others. Stress can arise from a number of sources, from overly enthusiastic pruning and topping to environmental factors like excessive temperatures, water shortage or surplus, soil acidity or overfeeding and lack of nutrients. It is good to know that cannabis is called a ‘weed’ for a reason: this is a hardy species with great natural resilience. Still, most cannabis seeds you can order online are crossbreeds cultivated for specific traits like taste or THC content. Years of crossbreeding and hybridization have created some strains that are more prone to stress than their natural ancestors.

When growing strains that are sensitive to stress, growers run a risk of their cannabis plants developing hermaphroditic traits – like the well-known Original Glue (Gorilla Glue #4). In our online seeds catalogue, you’ll find certain strains that are particularly resistant to stress.

Removing Sex Organs From Hermaphrodite Cannabis Plants

If for whatever reason you do spot hermaphrodite cannabis plants, all is not lost. You just have to act fast and be cautious. To avoid hermaphrodite cannabis plants from pollinating themselves, carefully remove the male reproductive organs that form on the nodes. You can do so by gently taking a pollen sac in between two fingers and twisting/pulling it off. Wash your hands thoroughly before you go near your female plants – you don’t want to cause accidental pollination because of your dirty fingers! This way you can still have a satisfying harvest from any hermaphrodite, without having to pluck the seeds from your buds.

TIP: If you want to try and create your own unique strains, you can learn more about growing regular seeds in this blog.

TIP: For anyone trying to avoid raising hermaphrodites, check our info on the benefits of buying feminized seeds here.

The Difference Between Male And Female Cannabis Plants:

Cannabis is a dioecious plant, meaning each one is characterized by either “male” or “female” reproductive organs. A normal marijuana seed is 50% male and 50% female, so it can be a crapshoot for growers who are trying to ensure a plant that produces bud. But many growers buy clones or feminized seeds that guarantee their plants will have female reproductive parts. The female plants are more sought after because they grow sensimilla, which are the large, seedless buds that we understand as a weed. While male plants aren’t completely useless.

Gender Reveal of your Plant:

If you’re working with just regular seeds, you’ll need to determine the sex of your plant to know if it’s capable of growing sinsemilla. Your plant will begin to reveal its gender to you somewhere in between its 4 and 6-week birthday, which typically comes towards the end of its vegetative state right before it begins to fully flower.

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How to Tell if your Plant is Male or Female before Flowering

Pre-flowers will show signs of which will be clearly male or female. These pre-flowers will appear in between their nodes, which is where leaves and branches come out of the stalk. A male plant’s pre-flower is a pollen sac, which spreads pollen, and the female’s is a stigma, which catches pollen. The pollen sacs are just small, round balls that grow at the nodes. Whereas the stigma looks similar but have little white or pink hairs growing out of them. A female plant’s pre-flowers may look like pollen sacs at first, though they are a bit pointier, so give the plants a good 6 weeks before you decide which ones are useful and which ones are not. The pre-flowers starts before they even begin serving their reproductive purposes, but they are not always easy to recognize to the naked eye. If your plants have really small pre-flowers, may need to use a small magnifying glass to determine whether its a pollen sac or a stigma.

Male Plants What do I do?

Producing THC the male cannabis plants are essentially useless, so most growers eliminate the majority of their male plants as soon as the stigma pre-flowers show. You will have more room for the female plants that produce resinous buds.

You may want to keep a few male plants around for breeding purposes. As male plants grow, the little balls of pollen will eventually break open and spread pollen. The pollen can then be carried to a female pistillate, pollinating the female flowers.

Genetics are important if you plan on keeping male plants around. They will produce half the genetic makeup of your plants to come, so you want to make sure that they resist disease, mold, and pests.

Males produce a very soft material that is actually more valuable for hemp fiber than a female’s, whose fibers are much coarser. Male plants can also be used for recreational purposes even though it doesn’t create the classic version of what we understand as weed. Male cannabis also has a light psychoactive factor thanks to the fact that a small number of cannabinoids can be found in their leaves, stems, and pollen sacs, not as potent as the THC-stacked female plants, these cannabinoids can be used to make concentrate oils.

Intersex Plants

Sometimes a female plant will develop both male and female sex organs, rendering it intersex, also referred to as hermaphrodite. Plants can develop both sex organs when they are under tremendous stress because of plant damage, extreme weather, disease outbreak, or malnutrition

A plant that has both stigmas and pollen sacs, or a female plant that produces anthers, as seen in the picture. Both produce pollen, though one contains pollen sacs that will break open like any other male cannabis plant, while the anthers are stamen that are already exposed.

Though it can be a result of simple genetics. Intersex plants are not typically good. So you want to make sure to monitor your growing conditions to avoid extreme stress in your plants.