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male pot seeds

Male pot seeds
Because the hemp fibres from males are softer and thinner, they are better suited for high quality cloth like bed linens or towels.

Best Ways To Use Male Cannabis Plants

Male cannabis plants sure don’t have the best reputation. In fact, what most growers learn early on is to spot them and toss them out to avoid pollination of their precious ladies. The truth is, male cannabis doesn’t deserve its poor image. Before you discard them, learn some good uses for male cannabis plants.

Male cannabis plants are normally seen as something undesirable, at least if you ask the average cannabis grower. No one wants their precious crop accidentally pollinated and then ruined, as we’ve learned will happen if we don’t separate the males from the females early on. This negative stigma and the hassle associated with male plants are the reasons that feminized seeds have gained popularity. It’s true, they do make things easy on the grower.

The thing is, male cannabis plants don’t really deserve the poor image that they have. They have some valid uses, which you may want to consider before you go tossing them. Here are some of the best ways to use your male cannabis plants.

YOU NEED A MALE FOR BREEDING YOUR OWN STRAINS

Yes, growing cannabis is awesome, and very few would question such a fact. But growing pretty much the same identical bud from clones may not be the most interesting thing for you, the cannabis enthusiast. How about breeding your own, top-quality cannabis strains? For more advanced growers, breeding new strains can well become an exciting passion. Imagine creating your own special bud that is more flavourful, more resinous, has better yields, and delivers a better high. You can achieve this when you combine the best qualities of different strains with careful breeding. To do this, however, you need to keep your males!

When you start breeding your own top-shelf bud, the male will contribute 50% of the genetic material. It just makes sense that you’d want to select the best male that you have as the donor.

HOW TO SELECT A GOOD MALE PLANT FOR BREEDING?

We don’t smoke males, so it’s harder to find the perfect plant with the best flavour. Usually, breeders select their male through process of elimination. Here is some criteria to help you determine which one to keep, and which to discard.

Don’t use males that grow especially fast or tall. Most of the time, these plants may be lacking when it comes to the quality of their bud.

Eliminate those male plants that flower too early, and rid yourself of those that autoflower. Plants that flower at unexpected times may have a higher chance of becoming intersex.

One thing that breeders do is select good males based on their stems. Large, hollow stems are normally a good sign, while you should toss those plants with a pithy stem. Experienced growers say there is a positive relationship between the type of stem and THC content.

Eliminate those male plants with an airy bud structure and keep those with dense and tightly-packed buds to ensure good yields.

A simple sniff test is yet another easy but effective way to find a promising male. Keep those plants that have the best scent.

MALE CANNABIS PLANTS ENSURE A STRONG GENETIC LINE

Unlike other plants that can grow both male and female flowers on a single plant, cannabis is what’s called a dioecious plant, which means the females and the males grow separately.

Always eliminating the genetically distinct males at the earliest time leads to decreased diversity. The presence of the males is important to the continued strength and vitality of a strain.

Many hobby growers use one single feminized strain, or base their entire grow on essentially identical clones.

This lack of diversity leads to weakened defences and an increased sensitivity to diseases and pests.

MALE CANNABIS PLANTS PRODUCE STRONG FIBRES

There is a distinct difference in the type of fibres that male and female cannabis plants produce. Farmers normally separate them when they desire different plants for different uses.

For example, making textiles or other goods from hemp fibre. Fibre from the male hemp plant is more flexible and has a higher resistance, whereas female fibres tend to be sturdier.

Because the hemp fibres from males are softer and thinner, they are better suited for high quality cloth like bed linens or towels.

The females produce fibre that is rough, which is more suited to making things like canvas and other types of rough textile.

Who knows, you may at some point want to get started with textile making! This is definitely another area where you would want to keep your males, as they are especially useful for certain distinct purposes.

MALE CANNABIS PLANTS MAKE GOOD COMPANIONS

You don’t always need to smoke cannabis to get some good use out of your plants. Cannabis plants have various natural defences, including their aromatic terpenes, which are great pest repellents. Cannabis really is an excellent companion plant. A few strategically placed male plants between your veggies may be all that’s needed to keep them pest free, without having to use potentially harmful pesticides!

If you have a rather large garden, you can potentially locate a dedicated space for your male plants. Keep them as far from your females as you can. You can further help reduce the risk of accidental pollination by planting sunflowers to create a natural barrier between your males and females. This allows you to cultivate incredible, smokable cannabis, without having to toss your male plants in fear of accidental pollination.

YOU CAN’T GET HIGH OFF MALE CANNABIS PLANTS? THAT’S A MYTH!

Contrary to what some say, male cannabis plants can get you high. It is not true that males don’t produce any THC. While the male plants will produce less THC in their buds as compared to their female counterparts, their flowers still contain more THC than what is found in the leaves of females.

Cannabis growers normally have good uses for the leftover sugar leaves from their female plants come harvest. Sugar leaves are great for making hash, cannabutter, and other concentrates.

You can also use your male plants for those very same purposes! Most of the resin in males is located in the sepals and those locations where pollen is produced. There is also a good amount of THC in the small leaves. No reason to toss out all this goodness!

USE YOUR MALE PLANTS TO MAKE A HEALTHY CANNABIS JUICE OR TEA

Cannabis juice is a valuable source of nutrients, which makes it increasingly popular among the health-conscious. Your male cannabis plants contain the same cannabinoids as female plants, although in lower quantities. This makes male cannabis optimal for juicing. You can use them in pretty much the same way as you would females, except that you don’t juice the thicker stalks and bigger leaves so you can avoid a bitter “plant taste.”

Cannabis juice acts as a great vessel for delivering the benefits of cannabinoids like CBD without the high or other unwanted side-effects. If you want to have it really simple, you can also make a tea from the leaves of your male plant.

WHY YOU SHOULD KEEP YOUR MALE CANNABIS PLANTS

Male cannabis plants really don’t deserve their bad reputation. They have numerous good uses, from breeding new strains to making your own cannabis-based health drinks, or for crafting high-quality hemp material.

But the benefit of keeping male plants goes beyond these criteria and really serves a greater purpose. Eliminating male plants poses a great risk to the healthy diversity and therefore, sustainability of cannabis as a whole. A similar example can be observed with bananas and other selectively bred plants. By breeding them into a few commercially-appealing types, bananas as we know them are now on the path to extinction. The same has already happened with corn and wheat.

By keeping the male cannabis plants, we’re actively helping to support cannabis’ continued genetic survival. If we ignore the importance of this for the sake of convenience, some strains may just disappear.

While it’s basically not possible to determine the sex of a seed from a random bag of seeds, a practice known as feminizing is becoming quite popular. Feminized seeds are selectively bred to produce female plants, however, some growers do worry about some feminized seeds turning into hermaphrodites.

Can You Tell if a Cannabis Seed is Male or Female?

Friday August 17, 2018

W hen it comes to growing cannabis, sex is important. Not that kind of sex! We’re talking gender, as in being able to discern male from female. The reason for this is simple enough: only female seeds produce flower, also known as the buds you might have in your stash as we speak.

When it comes to growing cannabis, seeds can be male, female or hermaphrodites. Females produce the resin-secreting flower, and males make small sacs of pollen near the base of the leaves. Over the years, cultivators have learned that un-pollinated females (remember, males produce pollen) continue to make resin and flowers that have not been pollinated are much more likely to produce high-potency cannabis. But is there a way to know if a seed is female before growing?

Interested in growing? Click here to purchase your own seeds and start growing today!

Determining if a Seed is Male or Female

If what you’ve got is a handful of seeds, it’s pretty much impossible to tell which ones are male or female. The only way true way to tell the plant’s gender is to plant some seeds, then wait. After a period of several weeks, it will begin to pre-flower, or form a small bud in the crux of a branch. One of the first signs your cannabis plant is female is the appearance of pistillates that are wispy and generally white in color.

If you’re looking for more precise, science-based methods to tell your plant’s gender, there are several labs that can sex your plant right after germination – eliminating the lengthy (usually around 6 weeks) wait to learn its gender. Portland, Oregon start-up Phylos Bioscience is in the business of studying cannabis genetics, and they sell a “plant sex kit” that’s pretty simple to do, even for the not scientifically-inclined. Simply press a cotyledon, or embryonic leaf, onto the kit’s filter paper and send it to their lab. They then test the leaf for the “Y” chromosome to determine its gender, just as would happen for a human male.

What are Feminized Seeds?

While it’s basically not possible to determine the sex of a seed from a random bag of seeds, a practice known as feminizing is becoming quite popular. Feminized seeds are selectively bred to produce female plants, however, some growers do worry about some feminized seeds turning into hermaphrodites.

Despite the potential for hermies, if growing cannabis is more hobby than full-time endeavor, and you want to guarantee you’ll have some consumable product, knowing your seeds are female from the beginning is probably your best bet.

There are many companies that sell feminized seeds, but, buyer beware, do your research to make sure the seller is reputable, especially if purchasing online. Thanks to modern technology, most feminized seeds from reliable brands will be 100% female as advertised – but that doesn’t mean there aren’t people selling low-quality seeds out there.

Methods for Feminizing Cannabis Plants

If you have some experience growing cannabis and would like to bend a crop to your will to ensure that the seeds will be female, there are a few feminizing methods you might try. One such technique is to literally stress out a healthy female plant by interrupting the light cycle during flowering, called Rodelization Feminizing.

In the colloidal silver feminizing method, distilled water is mixed with pure silver and sprayed on female plants. This method works best when the plants are flowering. This results in pollen sacs being formed, which will allow the seeds to produce female plants.

Feminizing via the silver thiosulfate technique involves carefully selecting a nearly mature female plant, then spraying it with 50/50 mix of sodium thiosulfate and silver nitrate. This triggers a gender change, from female to male. Place this plant back with the others to pollinate other female plants, and female seeds are created.

How Important is Your Plant’s Sex?

How much time you want to spend figuring out the sex of your cannabis plants really depends on how much time and energy you’d like to devote to growing your own marijuana. If you are a medical cannabis patient or caregiver, for example, and need to know what kind of cannabis you are getting every time, buying feminized seeds from a trusted seller is the way to go. But, if you have some time, consider yourself a green thumb, and want to experiment with your grow, you could simply plant your seeds and see what comes up. Happy growing!

What are your thoughts on feminized seeds? If you’ve used them before, how did it go? Share your experiences in the comments below!

Erin Hiatt writes about cannabis, psychedelics, hemp, politics, and drug policy reform for THC Mag and Freedom Leaf. She has also written for AlterNet and Vice. Erin’s work and industry insights have been featured as the hemp and media specialist for the Cannabis and Hemp Association and as a guest on “In The Know 420,” speaking on federal and international drug policy. Erin’s background is in the entertainment industry, where she worked as a print model and actress on stage, film, television, and commercials. Erin is an avid hiker, trekking much of the southwest, and is a proud member of Actors Equity. You can follow her work on WordPress, @erinhiatt on Twitter, and @erinisred on Instagram.