Feminized Cannabis Seeds Pros And Cons

Do you know the difference between regular and feminized seeds? Do you know your autoflowers from your high-CBD strains? Use this guide to find out! The season for growing marijuana outdoors is approaching and proper planning is fundamental to make it a success. First of all you need to know what type of seed to us… The disadvantages of feminized seeds vs regular are not so many, and both types have their pros and cons. Let’s compare them! Hint: fems rule!

Cannabis Seeds: Regular vs Feminized vs Autoflowering vs CBD

Use the guide below to learn what makes each type of cannabis different. By the end, you’ll know which type flowers the fastest, which makes the best clones, and which variety to use for breeding.

CANNABIS: A DIVERSE SPECIES

Cannabis seeds are available in four primary categories: regular, feminized, autoflowering, and CBD. Each type features its own unique advantages and disadvantages and appeals to different cultivators depending on their goals.

If you’re looking to enter the world of breeding—or perhaps you want genetically sturdy clones—then regular seeds are the way to go.

You’ll want to start off with feminized seeds if your only aim is a canopy full of colas. These seeds minimise the chances of a male turning up in the growing room.

Many growers value speed above all else. If you want to harvest in as little time as possible, autoflowering seeds fit the bill.

CBD strains offer a wide range of benefits and provide a clear-headed effect without a high.

Let’s take a dive into each of these four types of cannabis seeds. We’ll explore the pros and cons of each variety, whether they’re right for you, and the best strains in each category.

REGULAR

Regular cannabis seeds have a 50% chance of emerging as either males or females—just as nature intended.

Because they produce males, regular seeds are popular among breeders creating new strains. Males produce pollen that breeders use to fertilise female flowers, creating the next generation of seeds.

Regular seeds are available in many different forms. You’ll find indica-dominant, sativa-dominant, high-THC, and high-CBD varieties.

PROS CONS
Required for breeding and creating new strains Can be unpredictable; germinating seeds is a gamble regarding sex
Even chance of producing male and female plants Growers might misidentify males and females
Produce vigorous cuttings ideal for making healthy clones Accidental males in the grow room can lead to the fertilisation of flowers
Breeders can create a pollen bank using male plants Requires growers to set up separate grow tents or greenhouses for male and female plants
Wide variety of different strains available—both classic and modern genetics
PROS CONS
Required for breeding and creating new strains Can be unpredictable; germinating seeds is a gamble regarding sex
Even chance of producing male and female plants Growers might misidentify males and females
Produce vigorous cuttings ideal for making healthy clones Accidental males in the grow room can lead to the fertilisation of flowers
Breeders can create a pollen bank using male plants Requires growers to set up separate grow tents or greenhouses for male and female plants
Wide variety of different strains available—both classic and modern genetics

HOW ARE REGULAR GENETICS MADE?

Regular genetics are completely natural. They are the result of how cannabis emerged in nature. There’s no tampering or tweaking involved.

Purebred regular genetics stem all the way back to landrace ancestors found all over the world, from the mountains of India to the beaches of Jamaica.

Breeders have also created regular hybrids by combining the genetics of two different subspecies. This results in a progeny that expresses the traits of both parent strains.

ARE REGULAR GENETICS FOR YOU?

If you want an even mix of male and female plants, then regular cannabis seeds are for you. Having both sexes at your disposal will enable you to create your own strains.

You’ll be able to select plants with the traits you like and use them to create your own customised varieties. You can modify anything—the terpene profile, cannabinoid content, productivity, and size.

You’ll also want to grow out regular seeds if you plan on taking cuttings. Cloning will allow you to skip the germination phase and create an exact genetic copy of a selected plant. Only regular plants produce fully viable and vigorous clones.

TOP THREE REGULAR STRAINS

If you like the sound of regular seeds, check out the three varieties below.

• Exotic Witch produces high levels of THC.

Exotic Witch Regular
West Indies Sativa x Indica 80′ Northen California
450 – 500 gr/m 2
80 – 120 cm
7 – 8 weeks
THC: 20% (aprox.) / CBD: Low
20% Sativa, 80% Indica
500 – 550 g/per plant (dried)
130 – 160 cm
Early October
Cerebral and relaxing
Exotic Witch regular
West Indies Sativa x Indica 80′ Northen California
450 – 500 gr/m 2
80 – 120 cm
7 – 8 weeks
THC: 20% (aprox.) / CBD: Low
20% Sativa, 80% Indica
500 – 550 g/per plant (dried)
130 – 160 cm
Early October
Cerebral and relaxing

• Choose Garlic Mist for a heavy yield.

Garlic Mist Regular
Original garlic bud x 100% Cali Sativa Haze
550 – 600 gr/m 2
90 – 140 cm
8 – 9 weeks
THC: 19% (aprox.) / CBD: Low
50% Sativa, 50% Indica
650 – 700 g/per plant (dried)
140 – 180 cm
Early October
Cerebral and uplifting
Garlic Mist Regular
Original garlic bud x 100% Cali Sativa Haze
550 – 600 gr/m 2
90 – 140 cm
8 – 9 weeks
THC: 19% (aprox.) / CBD: Low
50% Sativa, 50% Indica
650 – 700 g/per plant (dried)
140 – 180 cm
Early October
Cerebral and uplifting
Mango Crunch Regular
Mango Haze x Sour Diesel
450 – 500 gr/m 2
90 – 140 cm
8 – 9 weeks
THC: 16% (aprox.) / CBD: Low
35% Sativa, 65% Indica
500 – 550 g/per plant (dried)
140 – 180 cm
Early October
Cerebral and uplifting
Mango Crunch Regular
Mango Haze x Sour Diesel
450 – 500 gr/m 2
90 – 140 cm
8 – 9 weeks
THC: 16% (aprox.) / CBD: Low
35% Sativa, 65% Indica
500 – 550 g/per plant (dried)
140 – 180 cm
Early October
Cerebral and uplifting

Feminized seeds were created to maximise the chances of germinating female plants. To be precise, the chances of a female emerging are around 99.9%. The odds are in your favour if you’re seeking flowers over pollen sacs!

See also  Homegrown Cannabis Seeds Review
PROS CONS
Almost guaranteed to produce female plants Aren’t suitable for breeding purposes
Eliminate the 50:50 genetic gamble Produce less viable clones; growers need to start from seed in most cases
Ideal for growers looking for nothing but dank buds Can sometimes turn into hermaphrodites due to bad genetics or environmental stress
Streamline the growing process and are cost-effective
P R OS CONS
Almost guaranteed to produce female plants Aren’t suitable for breeding purposes
Eliminate the 50:50 genetic gamble Produce less viable clones; growers need to start from seed in most cases
Ideal for growers looking for nothing but dank buds Can sometimes turn into hermaphrodites due to bad genetics or environmental stress
Streamline the growing process and are cost-effective

HOW ARE FEMINIZED GENETICS MADE?

Feminized genetics are made by essentially crossing one female with another. Breeders use two techniques to force female plants to produce pollen. They then fertilise another female, whose flowers produce a generation of feminized seeds.

We know what you’re thinking; how on Earth can a female suddenly grow balls?! Well, there are two different ways to achieve this.

By stopping the production of ethylene levels in plant tissues, breeders can force female plants to produce pollen sacs. Various chemical agents can be used to catalyse this process—colloidal silver being the safest option.

The second method involves relying on nature’s deep desire to procreate. If female cannabis plants are left unfertilised, they sometimes take matters into their own hands.

Occasionally, they’ll flip sexes in an attempt to fertilise themselves. They produce oddly shaped pollen-producing structures known descriptively as “bananas”.

Breeders collect this “female pollen” and use it to fertilise female flowers to produce feminized seeds.

ARE FEMINIZED GENETICS FOR YOU?

If you want nothing but resinous flowers from your grow, then feminized seeds are for you.

You’ll save a tremendous amount of time not having to sift males out of your growing space. You can rest easy knowing that your grow tent or garden will remain pollen-free.

TOP THREE FEMINIZED STRAINS

Do feminized strains tickle your fancy? If so, check out these three top-quality specimens below.

• Royal Gorilla produces outrageous levels of THC.

Royal Gorilla
Sour Dubb x Chem Sis x Chocolate Diesel
500 – 550 gr/m 2
90 – 160 cm
8 – 9 weeks
THC: 27% (aprox.) / CBD: Low
50% Sativa, 50% Indica, 0% Ruderalis
550 – 600 g/per plant (dried)
130 – 170 cm
Middle of October
Cerebral and relaxing
Royal Gorilla
Sour Dubb x Chem Sis x Chocolate Diesel
500 – 550 gr/m 2
90 – 160 cm
8 – 9 weeks
THC: 27% (aprox.) / CBD: Low
50% Sativa, 50% Indica, 0% Ruderalis
550 – 600 g/per plant (dried)
130 – 170 cm
Middle of October
Cerebral and relaxing

• Sweet ZZ will pump out a rewarding indoor yield.

Sweet ZZ
Grape Ape x Grapefruit
550 – 600 gr/m 2
80 – 150 cm
7 – 9 weeks
THC: 22% (aprox.) / CBD: Low
20% Sativa, 80% Indica
500 – 550 g/per plant (dried)
160 – 200 cm
Late September
Stoned, relaxed
Sweet ZZ
Grape Ape x Grapefruit
550 – 600 gr/m 2
80 – 140 cm
7 – 9 weeks
THC: 22% (aprox.) / CBD: Low
20% Sativa, 80% Indica
500 – 550 g/per plant (dried)
160 – 200 cm
Late September
Stoned, relaxed

• Fruit Spirit will set your taste buds on fire.

Fruit Spirit
Blueberry x White Widow
375 – 425 g/m 2
80 – 120 cm
7 – 8 weeks
THC: 18% (aprox.) / CBD: Low
60% Sativa, 40% Indica
475 – 525 g/per plant (dried)
175 – 220 cm
Early October
High (sweet taste)
Fruit Spirit
Blueberry x White Widow
500 – 550 g/m 2
80 – 120 cm
7 – 8 weeks
THC: 18% (aprox.) / CBD: Low
60% Sativa, 40% Indica
500 – 550 g/per plant (dried)
175 – 220 cm
Early October
High (sweet taste)

AUTOFLOWERING

Autoflowering strains get their name from their ability to flower without a change in the light cycle. They are easy to grow, fast to flower, and maintain stealthy sizes.

PROS CONS
No need to change the light cycle Lower yield
Small and compacte Typically less THC; not as potent as most photoperiod strains
Usually higher in CBD Difficult to clone
Rapid flowering times
Hardy genetics make them easy to grow and beginner-friendly
Ideal for guerrilla growing
PROS CONS
No need to change the light cycle Lower yield
Small and compact Typically less THC; not as potent as most photoperiod strains
Usually higher in CBD Difficult to clone
Rapid flowering times
Hardy genetics make them easy to grow and beginner-friendly
Ideal for guerrilla growing

HOW ARE AUTOFLOWERING GENETICS MADE?

Breeders create autoflowering seeds by using Cannabis ruderalis genetics—the subspecies that contains the autoflowering trait.

Cannabis ruderalis adapted to the shorter growing seasons and colder climates of Central and Eastern Europe, Russia, and Central Asia. The shorter summer in these regions forced the subspecies to begin flowering on its own accord.

Ruderalis doesn’t have time to mess around. These plants need to reproduce before the short summer comes to an end and the freezing temperatures of autumn grip the landscape.

They developed the ability to flower based on time and age, instead of a change in light exposure.

In contrast, indica and sativa subspecies are photoperiod varieties. They require shorter light cycles to trigger flowering—an environmental cue that signals the imminence of autumn and colder days ahead.

Growers rarely cultivate pure ruderalis plants. They are shrubby, small, low in THC, and produce low yields.

However, they are like gold for breeders. They use these plants to infuse well-known photoperiod strains with the autoflowering trait.

ARE AUTOFLOWERING GENETICS FOR YOU?

You’ll benefit from autoflowering seeds if you want a harvest as soon as physically possible. Maybe you want to boost turnover, or set up and take down your growing operation within a small window of time.

They’re also ideal if you have limited space. You can still achieve a good yield in a small tent by growing several plants and utilising the sea of green (SOG) method.

Autoflowering strains are well-suited to discreet growers. You can grow these small plants in modified buckets and boxes, and even conceal them among companion plants outdoors.

See also  Best Way To Germinate Autoflowering Cannabis Seeds

TOP THREE AUTOFLOWERING STRAINS

Autoflower growers enjoy a variety of options. The RQS catalogue features many different tastes, potencies, and varieties. Here are the top three.

Pros and cons of each type of seed: regular, feminised, autoflowering and CBD-rich

In its natural state, the marijuana plant is dioecious, that is, there are male and female specimens that breed among each other to create new specimens. Regular seeds are seeds that produce both male and female plants, where the grower has no control over their sex.

Although in recent years the proportion of users who choose this type of seed has fallen considerably, regular marijuana seeds continue to be the preferred option for some old-school growers, who wish to respect the nature of the plant in all aspects and, of course, by those who wish to make their own seeds.

Pros:

  • Breeding: Regular seeds make it possible to breed the plants making seeds with the males and females that emerge from a batch of regular seeds.

Cons:

  • Limited yield: The problem with regular seeds is that you do not have any control over the sex of the plants, meaning that after a month and a half of caring for them you may find that you have to get rid of half of your plants because they are males, thus reducing by half the potential yield of the crop.

Feminised seeds

Feminised seeds emerged in the late 90s as a response to the need to grow seeds that guaranteed the development of female plants. At the beginning this type of seed produced cannabis plants with certain quality problems and instability, with plants that sometimes suffered from hermaphroditism. However, over the years feminised seeds have achieved extremely high levels of quality, as regards yield, effects or flavour, to the point that they have relegated regular seeds to a mere 10% market share.

Pros:

  • Cost effectiveness: Feminised marijuana seeds guarantee 100% female crops. That is, all the effort and care you invest in the plants will be rewarded because there will be no male specimens to discard.

Cons:

  • As they do not allow the development of male plants, feminised seeds are not the appropriate choice if your aim is to produce seeds.

Autoflowering seeds

After feminised seeds, starting in approximately 2008 autoflowering seeds, also known as automatic seeds, made their arrival. As the name indicates, they flower in a shorter period of time and require less care than regular or feminised seeds. Autoflowering marijuana seeds emerged as the ideal choice for less experienced growers, but as their quality parameters have gradually equalled their non-autoflowering cousins in aroma, flavour and effects, they have become a valid alternative for the most demanding growers. In case you were wondering, yes, the autoflowering seeds are also feminised.

Pros:

  • Speed: Without a doubt, the big advantage of autoflowering seeds is the speed with which they develop. The flowering periods change depending on the variety, but with any automatic variety you know that in two and a half months tops your plants will be harvested.
  • Manageability: Although the differences in quality of autoflowering plants in comparison to the rest of the feminised plants are increasingly fewer, most of the automatic varieties are smaller in size, not only requiring simpler maintenance, but they are also ideal for discreet crops, on balconies or terraces. If your idea is to have a manageable marijuana plant, camouflaged among the flowers and pots on your terrace, autoflowering seeds are, without a doubt, your option.
  • Ease: Autoflowering seeds are, in general, easier to grow, both indoors and outdoors. In indoor gardens it is not necessary to change the photoperiod, as the plants themselves change from the growth period to the flowering period by themselves. That is, regardless of the hours of light they receive, they will develop buds.

Cons:

  • Yield: As they are smaller in size, autoflowering cannabis seeds have the inconvenience of a smaller yield per plant.

CBD-rich seeds

You have probably heard a lot lately about CBD, the cannabinoid in vogue. CBD is present in some marijuana plants and, in addition to having many therapeutic qualities, it counteracts the psychoactive effects of THC. Therefore, CBD-rich varieties of marijuana cannot only help people who suffer from insomnia, stress or more serious conditions such as multiple sclerosis, but, in addition, it can enable a more sustainable recreational consumption of cannabis compatible with daily activities. As for its cultivation, you can find both feminised and autoflowering varieties rich in CBD.

Pros:

Reduced psychoactive effect: As it acts as an antagonist of THC, CBD counteracts the psychoactive and side-effects of the former. To make a comparison with alcohol, a variety with high levels of THC would be like drinking spirits, while another rich in CBD would be like drinking a beer.

Therapeutic properties: CBD interacts with the human body’s endocannabinoid system, activating and stimulating our natural response to pain, anxiety, stress, etc. Scientific research has found that CBD can bring many benefits to our body including:

  • Reduction of nausea and vomiting
  • Suppression of convulsive activity
  • It combats psychosis disorders, and there have been studies and clinical trials which indicate that CBD can be effective for treating schizophrenia
  • It combats inflammatory disorders
  • It combats neurodegenerative disorders
  • It combats anxiety and depression disorders
  • Fewer side-effects: CBD counteracts the side-effects associated with THC, such as increased appetite, faster heart rate, poorer memory or an altered perception of time, among others.

Cons:

A reduced psychoactive effect: what may be an advantage for some, can be an inconvenience for others. CBD causes the effects of marijuana to be less intense, much milder, and not everyone is interested in that milder effect.

Author

Regina Journalist with a PhD in Media Studies and a chatty spirit. I love telling stories and being told stories; listening, analyzing and understanding all the things around me to never stop growing and discovering. Cannabis is one of my passions, and every day I learn about new nuances, secrets and possibilities offered by this plant, information I like sharing with you here.

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Feminized Seeds vs Regular: Pros and Cons of Both

Let’s compare feminized seeds vs regular to help all you newbie growers choose the right type for your needs

Making a choice for feminized seeds vs regular isn’t always easy.

When you go to a seed shop, all you see is feminized seeds. Most customers just buy whatever everybody else buys, but some people don’t like the idea of their seeds being genetically modified, and so they are suspicious. If you too have second thoughts about buying feminized seeds, our post will help you make an informed choice.

Table of Contents

Let’s Define Feminized Seeds First

Feminized cannabis seeds are the seeds that have been genetically manipulated in such a way that the plants grown from them are almost always female.

In contrast, regular seeds grow into plants that can either become male or female, with more or less a 50/50 chance.

If you want more details and insights into the biology and history of feminized seeds and what to expect of them, we’ve written a separate post about it.

Are Feminized Seeds Bad?

The short answer is NO, they’re OK.

It’s true that some 30 years ago—when fems first made their appearance on the weed scene—growers routinely ran into problems with feminized seeds. The reason was that, initially, the process of feminization involved too much stress. As you might know, stressed marijuana plants often turn into hermaphrodites. And if they later produce seeds, those seeds inherit this feature, too. Meaning the seeds harvested from hermie plants grow into hermies as well if they’re stressed even slightly.

Fortunately, today’s market—with its huge supply and ruthless competition—forces breeders to eliminate stress from their practices. Most of them offer customers very stable genetics. I myself have seen regular plants change sex for no particular reason. And fem plants that were standing next to them were perfectly alright. So, feminized seeds aren’t good or bad per se. It all depends on the breeder who’s made them.

So Are Feminised Seeds Better Then?

I risk making purists angry, but I think that yes, they are. If you grow cannabis for buds, the choice of feminized seeds vs regular is a no-brainer.

With regular seeds, you’ll have to plant twice as many seeds as you need. Don’t forget that half of them will produce males and you’ll throw them away. This will leave gaps in your grow room that’ll have to be filled somehow. Besides, it’s a waste of resources if you take care of a plant for several weeks, and then it goes in a trashcan.

You’ll also have to watch your plants vere closely after you flip the switch to 12/12. It’s the time when plants reveal their sex, and males must be discarded IMMEDIATELY. You should never risk leaving them in your grow room for an extra couple of days for whatever reason. Even one pollen sack could ruin your whole crop.

And when you grow pot outdoors, guerilla-style, and can’t afford to visit your secret patch very often, the possibility of even one plant turning male in your absence is a major headache. Hell, cross-pollination can happen even if male and female plants are within 10 miles of each other, let alone in the same patch!

With feminized seeds, you’ll have none of these worries.

Are Feminized Seeds Less Potent?

There is nothing in the genetic makeup of feminized seeds to make them less potent than regular seeds. The genes that determine the sex of a plant have no influence over potency. And the same goes for terpenes. So, stuff grown from feminized seeds will smell and taste good and will make you as high as the buds grown from regular seeds.

Do Feminized Seeds Yield Less?

The yields that you can expect from cannabis seeds don’t depend on whether they are feminized or not. So, if you go to a seed shop and see two versions of the same genetics—feminized and regular—rest assured that both yield exactly the same. Yields may be high or just average, but either way it has nothing to do with feminization.

Feminized Seeds Disadvantages vs Regular Seeds

The main disadvantage is the higher price compared to regular seeds. However, recently the prices have been going down. At least some breeders sell their feminized beans very cheap.

One more (rather obvious) thing is that if you want to produce your own seeds the old-fashioned way (when male and female plants grow next to each other, and pollination occurs naturally), you can’t do it with feminized seeds.

And even if you want to make your own feminized seeds (which is not so hard btw), you have a choice to use either feminized seeds or not, but it’s probably best to take genetics that are more ‘natural’, that is regular seeds.

Another drawback has more to do with the integrity of a particular breeder. And it doesn’t matter whether they make feminized seeds or regular. If they’re in a hurry to market half-baked strains and make a profit, it’s one thing. In this case, you may expect a great deal of variance of phenotypes. Probably, also a fair share of hermies and mutants from both feminised or regular seeds. But if they make sure to stabilize their varieties over several generations, it’s a totally different thing.

So read reviews about a breeder and their strains, look for how stable their plants are and whether growers have ever problems with hermies. If the breeder checks out, their feminized seeds can be better than non feminized seeds by another, less scrupulous breeder.

Bottom Line: Feminised Seeds Rule!

Purists and traditionalists never win in the long run. Progress always does. So don’t look down on such a wonderful modern invention as feminized seeds. In most situations and contexts, they are your best bet.