Autoflowering vs Feminized Cannabis – What exactly are the main differences between these two types of cannabis seed? Which one is a better? With marijuana legalization, many cannabis enthusiasts think of growing their cannabis plants at home. It is not that tough. However, you should have a basic…
Autoflowering vs Feminized Cannabis – Main Differences
Choosing between autoflowering vs feminized seeds is, without a doubt, one of the most important decisions a grower has to face when growing cannabis, whether indoors or outdoors. Nowadays, this botanical discipline offers endless possibilities, making it easier depending on the demands and techniques of each grower, as well as climatology, room and the objective of the grow.
This post is going to address the main differences between autoflowering seeds and feminized strains. There are plenty of things to take into account regarding their morphology and whether the grow takes place outdoors or indoors. This article intends to sort out the doubts that come up when growing strong cannabis plants that grow dense flowers full of resin.
Autoflowering vs Feminized: The Eternal Debate
The first thing worth making clear is that autoflowering and feminized terminologies aren’t fully accurate, although they are popularly among the cannabis community. This is because most autoflowering seeds are actually feminized; therefore it would be more exact to classify them as autoflowering and photoperiod dependent. Their main difference is the light dependence during the different life cycles.
While photoperiod dependent strains require 18 to 12 hours of daily light to start flowering, autoflowering plants can be on the same light schedule throughout their entire life cycle, as they instinctively regulate, moving on to the generative phase, which usually happens around 3-4 weeks after the germination.
Feminized strains were created to avoid male plants within grows; while autoflowering plants are due to the Ruderalis gene and normally aimed at less experienced growers, as they are easier to grow and work with; though less productive than photoperiod ones.
Feminized vs Autoflowering: Grow Differences
Both types of seeds gather numerous differences that make growers choose according to their preferences and possibilities. Hereunder, we are going to explain the main differences that all doubtful growers should know before deciding.
- The main difference is in the flowering period. Autoflowering plants do it automatically; while feminized plants grown indoors require manual light adjustment, going from 18 hours of light to 12.
- Outdoors, feminized strains are weather dependent. The perfect moment to grow them in the northern hemisphere is between March and June. The plants are ready for harvest between September and November.
Other important aspects
- The other main difference is the capacity to grow various crops in the same year. While feminized strains under direct sunlight only have one season; autoflowering strains can produce up to 3-4 crops per year, depending on the variety and climatology of the area.
- Another aspect worth considering is their growth difficulty. Photoperiod dependent strains have a longer life cycle. This requires more experience and basic knowledge in order to sow at the right moment and avoid future crop problems. However, being able to control plants’ development in indoor grows means that if there are any nutritional deficiencies, the vegetative phase can be made longer and the flowering period can be delayed until the situation is restored.
- Feminized strainsproduce larger yields than automatic seeds, whether indoors or outdoors, due to their morphology and physiology.
- It’s worth mentioning that automatic seeds are more resistant towards possible over fertilizations; whereas feminized plants require certain precision when it comes to administering nutrients.
- Due to their fast growth and short life cycle, don’t prune autoflowering plants during their vegetative growth. They won’t have enough time to recover from the stress, like feminized strains would. Automatic strains aren’t suitable for transplantation, feminized plants are.
- Autoflowering plants are the result of crossing sativa or indica strains with a Ruderalis. therefore, they are very vigorous in comparison to feminized plants.
- Autoflowering strains can only grow from a seed while feminized seeds can also grow from cuttings or clones. Therefore, feminized mother plants can be growing for as long as necessary.
Morphological Differences Between Both Varieties
Apart from growth techniques and other characteristics previously mentioned, autoflowering and feminized varieties also hold morphological differences. All of them are easily recognizable, thus its very important to know them well in order to choose accordingly.
- Automatic strains are normally quite short in comparison to photoperiod dependent varieties. Most of them don’t grow past 1 meter. This compact appearance could be a disadvantage to some growers. Although for others (especially those with less experience), it’s an excellent solution. They are easy to work with in reduced spaces. They are also more discreet, therefore ideal for balconies, terraces and guerrilla grows.
- Feminized strains do allow all sorts of pruning techniques to control their height and shape their. Therefore, by extending the vegetative period or seeding earlier, plants will reach a greater size.
- The calyx/leaf ratio is also better in feminized strains. Autos tend to form too many leaves, which makes it harder to harvest the buds. On the other hand, photoperiodic strains vary their appearance depending on whether they have sativa or indica genes. Autoflowering strains’ leaves are similar to Ruderalis, with 5 to 7 wide leaflets.
- Regarding buds,feminized strains (specially indicas) feature greater density and produce more resin around the flowers than autoflowering ones. This means more intense flavors and aromas. Automatic strains normally have lower THC content than photoperiod cultivars due to their Ruderalis genes.
Other differences Between Feminized vs Autoflowering Cannabis Plants
Although we have explained the vast majority of the differences between feminized and autoflowering varieties; there are still certain differences regarding stress exposure. For example, light contamination doesn’t affect autoflowering strains; but photoperiodic plants are very sensitive to inadequate light changes throughout each life cycle.
Feminized strains normally feature more cannabinoids, flavonoids and terpenes’ content, which guarantee a good quality yield. However, thanks to the constant investigation and development that most seed banks perform; the differences have become a bit less obvious over the years.
A Personal Choice
There are no reasons or arguments to categorically assert that one seed type is better than the other one. By knowing all the advantages, disadvantages, differences and similarities, a grower will have to make a decision based on experience, technique, space and available time to take care of the grow. Take everything into consideration before choosing between feminized and autoflowering seeds.
Sponsored – Feminized vs Autoflowering Cannabis Seeds – What’s the Difference?
With marijuana legalization, many cannabis enthusiasts think of growing their cannabis plants at home. It is not that tough. However, you should have a basic knowledge of gardening. Here in this post, you’ll learn about the significant difference between feminized and autoflower cannabis seeds.
Cannabis seeds are divided into three categories: regular, feminized, and autoflowering. Each type highlights its own unique benefits and shortcomings and appeals to different breeders depending on their purposes.
Feminized Cannabis Seeds
Feminized cannabis plants evolved from feminized seeds created by producing gender change in a female plant. This gender change is caused by forcing the plants to make them release ethylene. This ethylene release is then subdued, which triggers the female plant to produce a pollen sac that holds pollen with 100 percent female characteristics that will result in 100 percent female seeds that will develop into female plants.
Feminized seeds are seeds mainly grown to reduce male chromosomes. In short, with feminized seeds, you grow a female cannabis plant. This is what many canna growers want as it provides smokable buds.
If you want nothing but resinous buds from your crop, feminized seeds are the perfect seed type for you.
You’ll save a great amount of time and effort not having to remove males out of your growing room. You can rest assured that your grow tent or space will stay pollen-free.
Benefits of Growing Feminized Seeds
- Feminized seeds produce female plants and provide smokable buds.
- Plants from feminized seeds have cannabis with a higher THC and CBD ratio, which makes the impact more intense and lasts longer compared to autoflowering seeds.
- Feminized seeds are nearly 100% hermaphroditic free.
- Female cannabis plants raised with feminized seeds produce higher yields compared to autoflowering plants.
- Cannabis plants grown from feminized seeds have fewer leaves in comparison to autoflower seeds.
- Unlike autoflowers, female cannabis plants cultivated with feminized seeds are easier to cut.
Autoflowering Cannabis Seeds
Autoflowering seeds are a popular choice for novice growers as they flower automatically, are easier to grow, smaller in size, and are quicker to collect than feminized seeds.
Autoflowering marijuana plants switch from the vegetative phase to the flowering stage automatically with time. They also need a simple lighting schedule and are more immune to temperature fluctuations, diseases, and fungi, offering a perfect way for novices to get into cannabis growing.
You’ll benefit from autoflowering seeds if you want a quick harvest. They’re also perfect if you don’t have much space. You can still have a generous yield in a small tent by cultivating multiple plants and using the sea of green (SOG) technique.
Advantages of Growing Autoflowering Seeds
- Autoflowers blossom automatically and need little attention.
- Just like feminized seeds, autoflowering seeds produce female plants and give cannabis.
- The growing cycle from seedling to harvest is quick, allowing breeders to harvest 2 to 4 times a year.
- Since autoflower strains are crossbred with the ruderalis strain, the plant grows small and needs less maintenance.
- Autoflowering cannabis strains need less growing space.
- Compared to feminized marijuana plants, autoflower plants are more immune to temperature fluctuations, insects, and fungi.
The Difference Between Feminized and Autoflowering Cannabis Strain
To make things easy for you, we have added the differences between the two strains in the following table. This gives you a clear summary and enables you to make the right decision between feminized seeds and autoflower seeds.
|Characteristic||Feminized Seeds||Autoflower Seeds|
|Cultivation||Easy to medium||Very easy|
|Plant height||Medium to tall||Small to medium|
|Start flowering||When a light cycle of 12 / 12 is applied||2 – 4 weeks after planting|
|Average time from seed to harvest||12 – 20 weeks||8 – 12 weeks|
|Yield||Medium to large||Low to medium|
|Space required||Medium to large||Small to medium|
If you’re looking for the highest potency and the most generous yield possible, feminized seeds are the perfect option for you. If you’re beginning outdoor growing or don’t have much expertise, experience, space, and time, autoflower seeds might be the right option for you as they offer the quickest and easiest way to a great yield.
We hope you would now be able to find the right strain for you. Click Here if you want to buy the best and cheap marijuana strains.