By Gillian May | AROYA Contributor
If you want to grow cannabis, it’s essential to know how and when to cultivate seeds from cannabis plants. True, you can clone or keep mother plants, but that is a costly endeavor that can take many resources to accomplish. So, let’s take a look at cultivating cannabis seeds and the crucial things you need to know.
First off, you should know that most growers prefer not to have too many seeds in their plants. Too many seeds indicate a bad harvest as it can take away from the yield and potency of the plants. However, if you want to grow cannabis, knowing exactly how to cultivate cannabis seeds even in small amounts is a worthy pursuit.
Cannabis seeds can only be cultivated from female plants. You’ll have to become good at spotting which plants are male and which are female. Male plants often produce pollen sacs that are round and grow in between stems. Female plants have long filaments that collect pollen from the male plants. The female plants are the ones that produce flowers and seeds. Female plants receive pollen from the male plants through the air. A female plant that has received pollen will produce many flowers and seeds over its life cycle.
However, some growers like to choose genetics for their plants that limit the number of seeds and increase the numbers of flowers or buds. But if you want to collect your own seeds for future harvests, it’s important to have plants that produce many seeds. Also, some growers are interested in cultivating more seeds for economic purposes, such a hemp seeds and hemp seed oil.
The plant must be fully mature before cultivating cannabis seeds. You can tell by looking at the seeds themselves. Fully mature seeds are dark brown in color and have tiger-like stripes on them, and the outer layer should be hard, not soft. Immature seeds will still be green or beige in color and small. It’s important to know that cannabis plants with a lot of seeds will take longer to mature than those with higher amounts of flowers and fewer seeds.
Removing seeds from mature plants can be done by hand, or sometimes growers like to use machinery to do the job. It’s essential to let the plant fully dry before cultivating seeds; this way, you know the plant and seeds are fully mature and ready to be broken apart in the cultivation process.
When breaking apart the plant material to find the seeds, be sure not to lose too much of the trichomes, which are a valuable part of the plant. However, you can use a screen to collect that material while separating it from the seeds. You can break up the seeds in larger quantities by rubbing the plant between your fingers to release the seeds. Be sure they’re free of all plant material as too much plant matter can invite contamination and spoil the seeds during the storage process.
Seeds can be stored in dry containers in the fridge or freezer. However, seeds need a consistent temperature for a long time to stay viable, so be sure there aren’t large fluctuations in temperature.