How to: Distinguish between a male and female cannabis plant

24 06 2008

Female cannabis flowers are distinguished by their white hairs, which first appear in pairs at the top of the stem and branches and at the internodes where branches emerge from the stem. These hairs will increase in number, thicken into clusters and change colour from white to orange as flowering progresses.

Difference between Male and Female Cannabis plants

Male cannabis flowers may be recognized by the pairs of tiny pods (initially, smaller than a match-head) in the same locations. They too will quickly increase in number. Soon after forming, these pods will open into mature male flowers which will then distribute pollen.

The advantages of growing outdoors

24 06 2008
  • Outdoor cultivation requires less equipment, expertise and labour. For the first few weeks of life, outdoor plants need the same care and attention as indoor ones. However, once a few basics have been well established, outdoor plants may be left (in a good, sunny spot) to take care of themselves. They may need to be regularly watered and fed and, occasionally, pruned but most of their development will be accomplished simply by allowing them to grow over spring and summer.

    This feature of outdoor cultivation is what makes ‘guerilla growing’ possible. Established plants may be placed outside in remote or wild areas and left to their own devices throughout the growing season. The guerilla grower need only visit them a few times in this period, or even just the once, at harvest time.

  • Outdoor plants will usually yield more than indoor ones. This is simply because they are able to grow larger. Few indoor setups are able accommodate plants larger than 180cm. Assuming that detection is not a problem, outdoor plants may comfortably grow to 2 or 3m in height. It is possible for a single plant of this size to produce 500g or more of dried bud. Germinating seeds early in the growing season (March or April in the Northern hemisphere) will allow your plants a long vegetative period before flowering is triggered by the shorter days of late summer.

  • Sun, air, wind and rain are free!

  • Some people prefer the taste and effect of organically grown cannabis. Many cannabis lovers insist they can easily differentiate between buds grown with soil and sun and those produced with hydroponics and grow-lights. This, however may simply be the result of their smoking over-fertilised indoor cannabis, or even the fact that indoor buds can taste very different, due to their containing an uncommonly high level of THC that is simply not attainable outdoors.

The advantages of growing indoors

24 06 2008
  • Indoor cultivation allows the grower control over all the factors governing plant growth – light, water, nutrient, heat, humidity, airflow and so on. When these factors are effectively managed the usual result is a more potent crop achieved in a shorter space of time than would be possible with outdoor growing.

  • Similarly, indoor cultivation allows the grower to decide exactly when to induce flowering, giving more control over the speed and size of the crop.

  • Grow-lights allow plants to enjoy the benefits of direct, intense light for their entire ‘daytime’ life. This is not possible when growing with sunlight. More direct light generally results in denser, more resinous buds and a more compact plant.

  • The resin that coats the flowers of indoor plants need not be affected by environmental factors such as wind and rain – which can damage the glands

  • Indoors, there is a smaller range of pests that may prey on or damage plants. However, the sealed environment of a grow-room also removes the possibility of naturally occurring beneficial insects (which prey on pests) and, unchecked, may result in a far more serious infestation than is likely outdoors.

  • Indoor cultivation allows the grower to work simultaneously with plants at different stages of growth. This can be achieved by having two or more growing areas, typically one on a 12/12 photoperiod for flowering, the other on 18/6 for vegetative growth. This set-up allows a ‘rolling’ or perpetual harvest (where a number of plants are put into and harvested from the flowering area every week or fortnight)

  • Perhaps most importantly, having a two-cycle growing area allows the possibility of keeping ‘mother-plants’ and making clones. Cloning enables a grower to retain the individual genetics of one favourite plant for years, if desired. Keeping a female plant in a perpetual 18/6 photoperiod allows it to continue vegetating indefinitely. Any shoots cut from this mother plant can then be rooted and transferred to the flowering area. This means the grower is able to flower many exact copies of the mother while retaining the ‘master copy’ in the vegetative area.

How to: The difference between the growing and flowering fase

24 06 2008

The number of light-hours a cannabis plant receives in each 24-hour cycle is the chief determinant of whether that plant is in its growing or flowering phase.

Plants that receive 18 hours or more of light in each 24-hour cycle are in their growing or vegetative phase and in nearly all cases will remain in this state until the number of light-hours drops. They gain height quite rapidly. Vegetating plants will often display pre-sexing spurs at their internodes, but will very rarely show their gender. Their foliage is generally a lighter green than that of flowering plants. How long vegetation continues depends on the grower, the growing area, the variety being grown or the natural light cycle. There is no set length of time for the vegetative period.

Cannabis plants that receive 12 hours of light and 12 hours of UNINTERRUPTED darkness per 24-hour cycle for a period of two weeks or more will enter their flowering phase. Flowering Indica varieties will slow their upward growth in favour of producing female or male flowers. Sativa varieties will often continue their upward growth while producing flowers. Flowering plants (especially Indicas) often turn a darker green as they mature. The flowering period for each variety of cannabis is a set length of time, usually between 6 and 12 weeks.

Feminised cannabis seeds from Sensi Seeds

24 06 2008

Sensi Seeds marijuana seedsSensi Seeds recently announced they are now also have feminised cannabis seeds in their product range. The feminised strains they are now selling are bred from 5 of their most popular strains.

  • SKUNK #1

In their press release Sensi stated the following;

The idea is extremely attractive (feminised seeds ed.) – seeds that produce only female plants are a novice grower’s dream, eliminating the practice of sexing plants in the first weeks of flowering as well as the need to devote limited grow-space to unwanted males.
However, until quite recently, feminised seeds did not perform as well in practice as they did in theory, with unacceptable tendencies towards hermaphrodism, irregularity and unexpected growth. Hence, Sensi Seeds did not offer any varieties of feminised seed for sale until they could be sure such seeds were up to their exacting quality standards.

Have a look at these new feminised Sensi varieties for yourself.

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