This excerpted article appeared in the August, 2001 issue of The Art of Mary Jane Magazine, the premier magazine of cannabis culture and Mary Jane girls. If you’re interested in reading more articles like that, we invite you to subscribe to our magazine today!
Seeds have many benefits; the most helpful is that they do not introduce pests or problems into a garden like clones can. Another benefit seedlings can provide is health and vigor since sometimes clones can be old, tired, or even diseased without it showing visibly. When you start good hybrid cannabis seeds, you get to select a taste and effect that is more customized to your needs.
Many growers opt for feminized seeds since less selection and space is required to find a female plant worth keeping, but I feel the seed industry is partly to blame for heavily advertising feminized seeds as the easy way to grow. I have found nothing in life that is easier, and anytime you put in more hard work and effort, the results are always worth the extra details. The male plant is very important in breeding and many traits such as pest resistance, fungus resistance, and even potency are passed on from the male of the species.
The main reason people choose feminized seeds over regular seeds is space constraints. I have found many elite plants by starting just five seeds and selecting the best female, not only with TGA seeds but other breeders’ as well.
When selecting seeds, do some homework online and find out what real medical growers are actually raising in their gardens and not what’s being advertised by the Dutch re-sellers. Make sure you’re selecting based on grower feedback and not some huge advertisement or some fixed cannabis competition. While TGA seeds have an excellent reputation among medical growers, there are many talented breeders who not only care about their product but test extensively to ensure quality. Most are smaller breeders who cater to the medical community, however.
Feminized seeds are notorious for containing high ratios of hermaphrodites and to an inexperienced grower these can wreak havoc among your sinsemilla crop.
You would be surprised how many veteran growers have problems with getting seeds started. The most common mistake is to use a heat mat, which cooks the seeds. Cannabis is a weed and, as long as the seeds are viables, it’s hard to prevent them from germinating. I have had seeds germinate under the floor mat of a car in my youth and recently some of the seeds I deemed not viable germinated under my BBQ grill in gravel in cold winter. I see people soaking or treating the seeds in God knows what products and I just shake my head.
All a seed needs to germinate is moisture and a temperature range between 50-90 degrees Fahrenheit and you’re good to go. There are other factors involved, though, and if you germinate your seeds between 70-80 degrees you will have a better ratio of females. Warmer temperatures tend to produce more male plants.