As in any other plants, marijuana seeds grow into either male or female plants. This is a natural course of action, because the plants need both males and females to reproduce and spread. When male plant matures it produces pollen that pollinates the females, which in turn leads to production of cannabis seeds. However, if the female plants are not pollinated than the buds continue to grow larger and produce THC, and such plant is known as sensimilla (meaning: without seeds). For the growers that buy marijuana seeds it is a vital piece of information and the reason why they always get rid of the male plants. The only motivation behind keeping male plants is if you want to breed more pot seeds for further grows. This short article will teach newbie growers how to distinguish between male and female plants.
You can recognize the sex of a plant when it enters the flowering stage. This occurs when we change from constant light to periods of darkness, but some types of marijuana seeds can manifest some pre-flowers during the constant light period. Nevertheless, when it happens the male flowers will have small balls (which initially may look like buds) that are hairless. On the other hand, female flowers will develop little buds and, usually white, furry hairs will come out. In the beginning it is not so easy to differentiate them, but with time and experience it will not be a problem. A final difference in the later stage of flowering is that female flowers will have distinctive pistils that are shaped like letter āVā. Growers life is made a bit easier as male plants develop quicker than females, so there is more time to identify them before they cause any damage. As to time length of this difference: in an outdoor plantation it is about three weeks while in indoor growths it is between seven and ten days. As previously stated when a male plant is identified it should be quickly removed as the pollen may destroy the harvest. Growers should be careful when extracting the male plants, especially those that are close to females, because if the plant is shaken and there are open flowers with pollen , it can spread and pollinate the female.
Sometimes weed seeds flower into hermaphrodite plants, or hermies for short. These plants are part male and part female and will develop both male and female flowers. Most of the times it is a result of bad treatment or too many chemical additives. This is not so easy identified and it is easier in the case of male hermaphrodites. Hermies are not looked forward to by growers, mainly because of two things: as they have both male and female flowers the risk of pollination is significant. Furthermore, the fact is that the seeds created through such pollination while be useless as in many cases they flower into hermaphrodite plants.
To sum up, male plants are unwanted in your growth as they will pollinate the females and decrease their THC levels, thus drastically lowering the yield. No males means a sensimilla cannabis, which is great as it has a sweet and mild taste. Check up your plants for signs of sex when you move into flowering stage and in case of autoflowering strains even sooner. Do not hesitate to get rid of the male plants, as pollen from one or two of them may ruin your whole harvest. If you are unsure about sex determining skills buy yourself a guidebook with pictures that show male and female flowers. Finally, if you have such an opportunity clone or buy cannabis seeds that are feminized, as they will produce female only plants.