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You get what you pay for and cannabis seed is not exempt from this maxim. Quality seed is not cheap (at least when compared to other agricultural seed). This isn’t to say that inferior seed couldn’t be overpriced, but if you find cannabis seed proclaiming excellent genetics for sale at a price that seems too good to be true, caveat emptor.

10 Markers of a Quality Marijuana Seed

Takeaway: If you’re looking to start growing your own marijuana, the first place to start is with the seed. What should you look for? How can you tell a good cannabis seed from a dud? Chris Bond tells us.

So, you’ve decided to grow your own marijuana from seed. How do you know if those little, round nuggets in your hand will grow up lush and produce beautiful, productive buds? How do you know if they are duds? While ultimately the genetics will determine the destiny of those little seeds, and proper care will help them to realize their full potential, there are some markers you can assess to see if what you have is quality seed, indeed.

What to look for in a cannabis seed

#1 Color

While all cannabis seed is not identical in color, there are some consistencies. Healthy, viable seed will be light to dark brown in color. Seed that is light green or even whitish in color is underdeveloped and should be tossed out. Healthy seed will also have a burled or turtle shell-like pattern on its seed coat.

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#2 Sheen

A quality cannabis seed will have a waxy, protective coating. Seeds that appear dull are probably not as viable and should be avoided if given a choice.

#3 Shape

Quality cannabis seed will look like a plump teardrop. Flat or misshapen seeds will not likely produce quality plants.

#4 Texture

Quality seed will be firm. Cannabis seed should have a strong seed coat protecting the pre-emerged life inside. Any seed that is tender, pliable or squishy should not be planted; poor results will follow if attempted.

#5 Size

Size is relative, but if you are able to compare several seeds at once, the higher quality seeds are larger. When it comes to seeds, less is more. The fewer seeds that comprise any given amount, an ounce or a gram for example, is generally an indicator of higher quality seeds. The biggest seeds within a species generally have more energy stored within them and have a greater potential to mature into a productive plant. Note that indica strains tend to produce larger seeds than sativa strains so make sure the comparison is made among like seeds.

#6 Weight

Weight often goes hand-in-hand with size, but heavier seeds are generally of higher quality than lighter ones. The older a seed gets, the more potential loss of moisture and nutrients, reducing its overall weight. Damaged seed, which has been cracked can potentially lose those same necessary qualities.

#7 Float test

Quality seeds will sink in water. In glass or vessel, place room temperature water deep enough to full cover the volume of seeds to be tested. Place your seed or seeds in the water. After a couple of hours, anything still floating, should not be considered a quality seed. Soaking seeds will allow moisture to cross over the protective membrane and signal the seed that it is time to grow. As such this test should not be performed if the intent is to store the seeds after testing as it may render otherwise quality seed unviable if not meant to be immediately germinated afterwards.

#8 Storage

You may not have access to see or have verified information on the storage conditions of seeds, but if you can find this out, it is critical to maintaining quality seed. While cannabis seeds can be viable for over 10 years in some instances, the best seed in terms of productivity is not more than 12 to 18 months old. It should have been stored in dark, cool and dry conditions to prevent mold or the onset of any fungal issues. Storing in a freezer can prolong seeds as well, essentially suspending time.

#9 Age at harvest

This is another aspect you, the buyer may not be privy to. Quality seed is harvest when fully mature. If seed was collected before the plant was able to load as much stored energy into it as possible, then that seed will be starting out life in a deficit. Color, as referenced above can be an indicator of whether or not a seed was harvested at the appropriate time.

#10 Cost

You get what you pay for and cannabis seed is not exempt from this maxim. Quality seed is not cheap (at least when compared to other agricultural seed). This isn’t to say that inferior seed couldn’t be overpriced, but if you find cannabis seed proclaiming excellent genetics for sale at a price that seems too good to be true, caveat emptor.

This is not meant to be a definitive list, as new varieties of cannabis emerge on the scene all the time that may have “normal” traits that would otherwise be viewed as deficiencies in other strains. As always, do your homework, ask other growers who know and buy your seeds from a reputable source.

Small marijuana seeds
You probably thought about growing your own weed sometimes, but concluded that it’s too much of a hassle? Look no further, micro growing has everything you’re looking for and more.

The Wonders Of Micro Growing – High Quality Cannabis In Tiny Spaces

You probably thought about growing your own weed sometimes, but concluded that it’s too much of a hassle? Look no further, micro growing has everything you’re looking for and more.

As cannabis and its cultivation is more popular than ever and it seems that trend won’t stop soon, we see more and more people wanting to grow their own cannabis. Most beginners to growing don’t have the necessary experience or knowledge to start a full-blown indoor or outdoor growing operation, so they opt for a simpler option – a micro grow. Take a couple of seeds and plant them in a cupboard or a similarly small space, trying to get the best possible results of it – or in other words – micro growing. It is a natural way for beginner growers to get that needed experience and to experiment with no fear of ruining a big and expensive operation. This article will cover the basics of micro growing and the differences between it and a standard indoor grow, so let’s get started.

THE BASICS AND THE DIFFERENCES

Micro growing would best be described as a process of growing a small batch of cannabis in a limited space, trying to get the best possible results. That being said, micro growing is a type of indoor growing, just smaller in proportions. The main difference between a micro grow and a usual indoor grow is exactly that – the amount of space. Due to the lack of space, all the other basic aspects of cannabis growing – light, water and air supply, soil, the choice of strains – differ slightly from your regular indoor grow. Almost any space you imagine can be used for micro growing, from cupboards to computer cases. The main idea (and challenge) is to create the optimum conditions for your plants to thrive in that space.

CHOOSING A SUITABLE STRAIN

When it comes to micro growing, choosing the right strain is very important due to the limited space available. One of the things to watch out for is the height of your cannabis strain. Sativas grow higher and more slender than indicas, which tend to be short and bushy.

Furthermore, during the flowering phase sativas undergo a 200-300% increase in height, while Indicas increase only by 50-100%, which shows that indicas are more compatible with micro growing.

Another reasonable option would be autoflowering strains. No matter what the conditions, autoflowering strains stay small due to their genetics (a great many of them even smaller than indicas) and aren’t dependent on the light regime, which means they will have a shorter harvest time.

SOIL QUANTITY

Most plants you see occupy the same volume beneath the ground as above. The reason behind this is because the root system is vitally important to a plant, being the part of the plant where it takes up nutrients and water. The amount of space occupied by a plant’s root system has a great influence on the plant’s size. We can use this correlation to our advantage as micro growing is concerned. The volume of the pot you use to grow your plant in is directly related to how large the plant will grow. To give you an impression:

  • Around 12 liters and more: average plant height
  • Around 5 liters: height of plant up to 60cm
  • Around 2-3 liters: height up to 24cm
  • Around ½ liter: height up to 13cm

A thing to note is that due to the small quantity of soil your plants will need more fertilizer and water than regular plants.

LIGHTING

You can’t grow cannabis at all without light and you can’t grow good quality cannabis without proper lighting. Choosing the optimal lighting for your micro grow is an important decision and you have a variety of lamps to choose from – fluorescent tubes, CFL (energy-saving lamps), HPS, HPI and LED bulbs. When choosing a lighting you got to keep an eye out for the wattage and the heat the lighting produces. When it comes to wattage, an average of 400W is required for a square meter.

HPS and HPI lamps are the go-to lightings of indoor growers because of their high light output and 400W is lightweight for this kind of lamps. But, the problem with this kind of lighting is that it produces excess heat, which especially won’t help with your micro grow. Due to the lack of space things get very hot very quickly and your plants will be in danger of drying out.

But, fear not, this is one of the reasons we have fluorescent tubes and CFLs. They are very similar and both have a great light output, don’t dissipate much heat and are available in different light colours. You can help your cannabis plant with different light colours – a plant in the vegetative state needs more blue light, while a flowering plant requires more red light.

And at last, LED lamps. A good choice for micro growing, because they have a wide light spectrum and virtually don’t heat at all, but they come with a hefty price and may not be suitable if you’re planning a certain budget.

AIR AND WATER SUPPLY

As with light, your plants can’t live and grow without water and air. Having a good and clean ventilation and water supply system is a necessity for any grow, including micro grows.

The movement of air is necessary to a grow, because CO2-rich air is quickly depleted and that is a requirement for your plant’s photosynthetic process, which causes new plant cells to grow. The heated air due to the lighting needs to get out of the grow too, as it dries out the plants. Usually, table fans are used in indoor grows, combined with ventilation systems, but that is probably not practical for your micro grow. A neat solution is a computer fan. You put one at a low point that will act as your intake fan and put another one in a higher position to act as an exhaust fan. This way, as heat rises, the hot air will come out first, replacing it with cooler and fresher air. Don’t forget to use some kind of filters on the fans which will help you battle unwanted pests and odors.

Watering your micro grow becomes tricky after a while, as the plants become bushier and expand in width. You will need to use a small water system or make the grow accessible from the side to water your plants from the bottom. Don’t forget that plants in micro grow need more water than plants in regular grows, as they have less root space.

GROWING TECHNIQUES

It was mentioned before, that space is the main difference between micro growing and a regular indoor grow. This lack of space usually calls for shorter and bushier plants, which is shown in the choosing of the right strain. There are other ways to influence a plants growth, such as various growing techniques: topping, super cropping,screen of green (ScrOG) and low stress training (LST).

Topping is the process of cutting off the very top of the plant, which stimulates the plant to grow new secondary branches. This way, the plant grows in width and not height, growing in a bush-like shape and creating more buds. Super cropping (or HST – high stress training) on the other hand, requires you to break the stem of the main branch. This technique needs to be done carefully. You need to break the stem in such a way, that the plant thinks it is gone for good and starts growing side branches, but not completely, so that the main branch can recover and grow to a smaller height.

The ScrOG technique requires you to put a mesh wire screen between the soil and the light source. Once the branches grow through the screen, you can tie them to the screen to force them to grow horizontally, hence the name. With ScrOG you manage the height of the plant and all the tops get the same light. LST is a somewhat similar technique, where you tie your plants higher branches to the soil, forcing the plant to grow side branches and more colas, with the end result being a higher yield in a smaller space, perfect for micro growing.

Beginner growers need to know that a micro grow isn’t a worthy substitute for a real indoor or outdoor grow. But, it is perfect as a starting point to develop that green thumb and to learn about the important things you need for a good cannabis grow. Feel free to try out and experiment with new strains, techniques and instruments, as long as you treat your plants with care. The whole process of growing a plant is a reward in itself, not to mention the harvest, so what are you waiting for?

3 GREAT STRAINS FOR MICRO GROWING

1. ROYAL DWARF

Royal Dwarf truly is a miniature cannabis specimen that can remain at tiny sizes of 40cm tall when trained in the ways mentioned above. This plant was bred for one reason and one reason only: stealth. Growers can easily cultivate multiple Royal Dwarf plants in their home without a single suspicion being raised. She can easily be grown within modified kitchen cupboards, wardrobes, boxes, and computer towers. Small LED lights can also be used within these tiny spaces to avoid giving off too much heat. Royal Dwarf is essentially the autoflowering version of the legendary Skunk, and was made using a Skunk strain along with a specific ruderalis cultivar. She offers stimulating but subtle sativa highs fuelled by THC quantities of 13%. She can therefore be smoked all day long whilst allowing the user to stay on top of their game and not get too high. Her small yet compact flowers offer sweet and citrus tastes.

Royal Dwarf will be ready to harvest a mere 8–9 weeks after seeds have been germinated. Plants grown indoors will provide yields of up to 200g/m² and won’t exceed 70cm in height. Plants grown outdoors within garden beds or guerrilla grow spots will produce harvests of 30–80g/plant and reach heights of between 50–90cm.

Royal Dwarf
Skunk x Ruderalis
150 – 200 g/m 2
40 – 70 cm
6 – 7 weeks
THC: 13% (aprox.) / CBD: Low
60% Sativa, 10% Indica, 30% Ruderalis
30 – 80 g/per plant (dried)
50 – 90 cm
8- 9 weeks after germination
Physically stoned
Royal Dwarf

Skunk x Ruderalis
150 – 200 g/m 2
40 – 70 cm
6 – 7 weeks
THC: 13% (aprox.) / CBD: Low
60% Sativa, 10% Indica, 30% Ruderalis
30 – 80 g/per plant (dried)
50 – 90 cm
8- 9 weeks after germination
Physically stoned

2. EASY BUD

It doesn’t take a genius to figure out how this strain received her name. Easy Bud is the perfect beginner strain, and even better for those wanting to start out low-key, gaining as little attention as possible. This strain goes mostly unnoticed wherever she is grown, reaching an average height of 50cm. This makes it possible to grow her within down-low attic spaces, empty cupboards, and hidden corners of the garden. Easy Bud features primarily indica genetics and provides a very subtle and mellow effect that chills users out and stimulates the appetite. A THC level of 12% makes Easy Bud even more suitable for beginners. Her flowers are loaded with tastes of citrus and herbs, making her a fine addition to some low-intensity edibles.

Formed using parent strains White Indica and ruderalis, Easy Bud is able to produce significant yields relevant to her small stature. Indoor plants offer yields of up to 325g/m² and reach heights of between 50–60cm. Plants grown outdoors serve up yields of 30–80g/plant and grow to taller heights of 60–110cm. Easy Bud will be ready to try after only 8–9 weeks after putting seeds into soil.

Easy Bud
White Indica x Ruderalis
275 – 325 g/m 2
50 – 60 cm
5 – 7 weeks
THC: 12% (aprox.) / CBD: Low
15% Sativa, 55% Indica, 30% Ruderalis
30 – 80 g/per plant (dried)
60 – 110 cm
8- 9 weeks after germination
Physical
Easy Bud

White Indica x Ruderalis
275 – 325 g/m 2
50 – 60 cm
5 – 7 weeks
THC: 12% (aprox.) / CBD: Low
15% Sativa, 55% Indica, 30% Ruderalis
30 – 80 g/per plant (dried)
60 – 110 cm
8- 9 weeks after germination
Physical

3. QUICK ONE

Quick One is another compact cannabis strain that can be grown in complete privacy. Most autoflowering varieties have fast flowering times, but Quick One has a real lust for speed. This child of Lowryder 1 and Old School Indica is capable of erupting into a fully mature specimen only 8 weeks after germination. If you want rapid turnover of indica-dominant flowers, then she’s your strain. A THC content of 13% offers a chilled body high this is great for relaxing in the evening without becoming stoned out of your mind. These pleasant effects go hand-in-hand with flavours of sweetness and citrus.

Don’t let Quick One’s size fool you; she’s more than capable of pumping out enough buds for personal use for quite some time. Indoor plants provide 275–325g/m² and grow to heights of 50–60cm. Plants grown outdoors, easily kept hidden by other plant species, offer 100–150g of fruity flowers per plant.