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Plant reproduction is a fascinating thing, particularly when it comes to cannabis plants. When you decide to start growing, you are going to need to know some things about gender when you’re growing your own cannabis. Much like humans, plants are fairly gender fluid.They can be male, female, or hermaphrodite (exhibiting both male and female characteristics). It’s important for you to know how gender affects your growing process.
Look Between the Legs
Not to be crass, but the best way to determine the gender of your cannabis plants is by looking at what grows between the nodes, aka the area between the stalks and stem of the plant. If you see a pollen sac, which looks like a sac and dispenses pollen, then you have a male plant. Female plants come with what is called a stigma, which catches pollen. When you look at it this way, plant reproduction is pretty similar to mammal reproduction.
Gender is 50-50
Seeds are either male or female, so you have a fifty fifty chance of getting female seeds which will grow into beautiful plants that will yield lots of delicious sticky buds, or male seeds which will not produce any buds. The best way around this is to purchase feminine seeds from a respected seedbank. You can find many good seedbanks online.
Cannabis Plants Reveal Their Gender Before Flowering
Contrary to popular belief, cannabis plants actually reveal their gender before they flower. Cannabis plants have two stages in their life cycle: vegetative and flowering. During the vegetative stage the plant is still young, it is growing, but not budding. At week 6, the plant enters what is called the “pre-flowering” stage. This is when you can begin to see precisely what will be growing between your plant’s nodes.
Some Plants Have More Than One Gender
Some plants are reveal themselves to have more than one gender, i.e., hermaphrodites. This means that they grow both male and female flowers. For obvious reasons, you don’t want hermaphroditic plants when you’re growing cannabis. You will not only yield fewer buds, but they will be lower quality too. Some strains are much more likely to produce hermaphroditic plants than others, but stressors in your growing environment can also cause your plants to become hermaphroditic. One positive outcome from hermaphroditic plants is that they produce a large quantity of seeds, which is great when you need more seeds for growing. It’s not so great when you’re growing a crop to sell or smoke.
Male Cannabis Plants are Useful
Despite what you may have been told, male cannabis plants are not completely useless. Obviously if you are growing a crop to smoke or sell, then you want females. If you’re growing for the purpose of making hemp, the male plants make for a softer fiber, which is great for making clothing. Male plants also produce far more seeds, which you need to grow more plants.
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You are well on your way to becoming a gender expert! Was there anything we didn’t cover? Share in the comments!