What Are Feminized Cannabis Seeds?
This article is sponsored by Kannabia Seed Company, an award-winning cannabis seed company headquartered in Spain. Using only the highest quality genetics on the market, their grower-oriented approach has made cannabis cultivation simple and satisfying for growers of all skill levels for years.
Anyone who’s ever savored a joint owes their enjoyment to the fruits of the cannabis plant, but moreover, to the female of the species. That’s because only female cannabis plants produce the cannabinoid-rich flowers that deliver the flavors and effects consumers look for.
This is why many North American growers are turning to feminized seeds—cannabis seeds that carry only female genetics, and can be relied on to produce only female plants. By creatively applying technologies to seed feminization, modern breeders like Kannabia can ensure female genetics in seeds with a nearly 100% success rate.
Male vs. Female Cannabis Plants
A bud of Diesel Glue grown from Kannabia’s feminized seeds. (Courtesy of Kannabia)
Cannabis plants that are pollinated naturally or with traditional breeding techniques can produce both male or female seeds. These are known as regular seeds and, as in most species, they occur with about an even split between the two sexes. That means cannabis cultivators starting with standard seeds have about a 50% chance of yielding a female plant from each one.
As a result, growing cannabis from regular seeds isn’t very efficient—it’s akin to running a bakery that has to throw out every second loaf of bread. Growers working from regular seeds have to account for the fact that roughly half of their plants could be males. While those plants are of some value to breeders, folks growing for flower won’t find much to like in them, and too many male plants can spoil a grow.
Traditionally, the solution to this has been an inelegant one, with many cultivators planting at least twice as many seeds as they hope to harvest with the assumption that about half of them will be useless. However big a harvest you’re looking for, using regular seeds means you’ll have to plant twice that many seeds.
Why Grow From Feminized Cannabis Seeds?
Cultivators depend on feminized seeds for efficient growing cycles. (Courtesy of Mr. Sticky Farm)
There are numerous advantages for growers who start their garden using feminized seeds. By removing the guesswork of germinating regular seeds, feminized seeds streamline the growing process, saving space and time.
That efficiency is key for medical cannabis patients and hobby growers. Since most cannabis regulations limit plant counts, growers cultivating a small crop of cannabis for personal use want to ensure they’re getting the most out of their grow.
Male plants don’t just take up space in a garden, either. They can also sap time and resources from growers. When male and female plants are both present, growers need to cultivate both until their sexes are clear. While some strains will show early signs of their sex before flowering begins, most cannabis plants don’t begin to express their sex until they start to mature past the vegetative stage.
This change occurs when the photoperiod, or amount of light and dark that the plant receives, changes to 12 hours of light and 12 hours of dark. In outdoor gardens this change can happen naturally with the seasons or, in more controlled environments like indoor gardens, by human intervention using light timers.
Once those plants are old enough, growers have to go to the trouble of actually determining their sex, monitoring each individual plant to ensure any males are removed before they can pollinate their female counterparts.
Growers can avoid spending weeks nurturing plants with only a 50% chance of expressing as female and maximize the space and plant count in their gardens by using feminized seeds from suppliers like Kannabia. These specially-treated seeds increase the probability of producing a female plant to 99%.
How Are Cannabis Seeds Feminized?
Treating cannabis seeds with a silver thiosulphate solution can ensure the resulting plants are females. (Courtesy of Kannabia)
There are a few techniques that can produce reliably feminized seeds. One classic method is stressing out a healthy female plant by interrupting its light cycle during flowering. While that works to an extent, the more common and controlled method is to spray down female plants with a collodial silver or silver thiosulphate solution. This method makes it possible to control the sex of a plant without any genetic tinkering or modification.
Both substances are a blend of water and fine silver particles, and they work in largely the same fashion. The silver solution impedes the production of ethylene, a hormone involved in flowering. The result is a female plant, but one that produces male flowers with pollen sacs. Since those pollen sacs develop on a plant with only female genetics, female genetics are all they carry. When those flowers pollinate another female plant (one untreated by silver solutions), the resulting seeds are nearly certain to be female.
Treating plants with a silver thiosulphate solution results in seeds that will produce feminized plants nearly 100% of the time, and Kannabia’s breeders have found this method to be the most effective way to maintain the stability of the seeds and future feminized plants.
Feminized Varieties to Try in Your Garden
Using feminized seeds can make it easier for home growers to cultivate strains like Russian Doll. (Courtesy of Kannabia)
Growing cannabis in your home is legal in an increasing number of states and provinces throughout the United States and Canada. To make starting a home garden easy, growers can start with feminized seeds for many popular strains from providers like Kannabia.
“In our search to find new genetics, Kannabia paired us with their feminized Russian Doll seeds,” say growers at Canada’s BlueSky Organics. “Every seed germinated, and now that we are in the late vegetative stage, these plants have an extremely hardy trunk preparing themselves for some massive buds.”
If you have more questions about strains or seeds, keep digging through Leafly’s resources. And to learn more about the variety of feminized seeds available to you, visit Kannabia’s website to see its full line of feminized genetics, including strains like Diesel Glue and the award-winning Mataro Blue.
Promotions are offered solely by Kannabia Seed Company. Terms and conditions may apply—contact Kannabia for full details.
Feminized marijuana seeds can streamline the growing process and ensure that cannabis cultivators get the most out of their hard work. Read all about the process here.
Most home cannabis growers looking to buy feminised seeds turn to Dutch Passion. As the first seed bank to create feminised cannabis seeds back in the early 1990’s, we take pride in supplying the best quality feminised seeds to the home recreational and medical growers. Female seeds (or feminized seeds) grow into female cannabis plants, saving you the hassle of unwanted male plants.
Durban X Unknown Indica
Original Skywalker x Amsterdam Amnesia
Sugar Bomb Punch®
THC Bomb X (Critical Orange Punch x Bubba Island Kush)
Original South African Power Plant
Wedding Cake X Animal Cookies
(Gorilla Glue #4 X OG Kush) x Blueberry
Critical Orange Punch®
Critical X (Grandaddy Purps X Orange Bud)
Gelato X Sherbet
Original Orange Bud
Old School Banana Indica
Gorilla Glue #4 X Sherbet
Mad Scientist X Voodoo
WiFi OG X Glueberry OG
Outdoor Feminised Package Deal
Trial Pack Feminised
Trial Pack Feminised
First Feminised Seeds Company Since The 1990’s
Dutch Passion were the first company in the world to create feminised cannabis seeds back in the 1990’s. Feminised seeds changed the way people grew cannabis as the grower can use a smaller grow room with fewer seeds for each grow. Each feminised seed will eventually grow into a mature female plant. Feminised seeds account for the vast majority of cannabis seeds used, these days over 95% of all cannabis seeds are feminised.
The process to create feminised seeds was discovered in the 1990’s when Dutch Passion allowed some female cannabis plants to bloom for many weeks longer than normal, just to see what happened. The plants eventually produced male flowers, the pollen was collected from these. To everyone’s great surprise this (‘female’) pollen produced seeds which only gave rise to female plants. Today, different techniques are used to produce and collect this ‘female pollen’. Feminised cannabis seeds have made growing your own cannabis easier than ever before.
Since the invention of feminised seeds, we have continued to improve feminised seed performance and results. Dutch Passion’s main focus is to provide the best performing cannabis seeds to professional growers and home growers. We source the finest cannabis genetics from our unrivalled network of breeders and genetic specialists around the world. When you buy your next feminised seeds buy them from Dutch Passion, the original creators and masters of feminised seeds.
Sugar Bomb Punch. Euphoric couch-lock stone and flowers covered with dense, glistening trichomes.
What Are Feminized Cannabis Seeds ?
Around 95% of feminised cannabis seeds grow into mature photoperiod female cannabis plants. Before feminised seeds were invented people grew from regular cannabis seeds which produced roughly equal numbers of male and female plants. Growers are usually only interested in the buds which grow on the female plants, male cannabis plants are normally discarded.
When Dutch Passion first created feminised seeds back in the 1990’s it was a revolution for growers who could grow their weed easily with fewer seeds, fewer plants, smaller grow rooms and less energy. Feminised seeds have remained popular with the majority of growers ever since.
Feminized vs Autoflowering Seeds
Feminised seeds have 2 main phases to their lives, veg and bloom, these can be controlled by the grower. During the first ‘veg’ stage of their life, feminised seeds grow vegetatively. During ‘veg’ growth (usually under 18-24 hours of daily light) plants grow leaves, roots and branches but no buds. Buds start to appear when daily light hours are reduced to 12/12 light which induces bloom (flowering). This requires around 12 hours of darkness and 12 hours of light per day.
Autoflower seeds grow from seed to harvest under 20 hours of daily light indoors. No change to the amount of daily light is needed for the autoflower plant to start flowering, it happens automatically (hence the name, auto seeds). Some growers regard autoflower seeds as a slightly simpler/faster way to grow cannabis. You can achieve very high quality cannabis levels from either feminised seeds or autoflowering seeds. Note that autoflowering seeds from Dutch Passion will only produce female auto plants, meaning that you never need to worry about male auto plants.
And Autofem Seeds Were Born
Autofem seeds are simply another name for autoflowering seeds. In the early days of autoflower seeds they were occasionally called autofems by some growers. The ‘fem’ part of the name refers to the fact that the seeds only produce female autos. Autoflower seeds/autofem seeds are one of the easiest ways to grow your own cannabis quickly. You don’t need to be an expert grower to get seriously impressive results from autofem/autoflower seeds.
Feminized vs Regular Seeds
Regular cannabis seeds produce roughly equal numbers of female and male plants. Some old-school traditional growers prefer regular photoperiod seeds if they are e.g. collecting male pollen for breeding projects. But most people strongly prefer to grow from feminised seeds which give rise to mainly female plants.
When using feminised seeds the grower can use a smaller grow room with fewer plants, compared to regular seeds. Dutch Passion are one of the few remaining seed companies to offer a full collection of regular seeds from the best classic varieties.
Kerosene Krash from feminized seeds. Amazing trichome production with a high THC content.
Buy Feminised Seeds From The UK and Worldwide
Your next cannabis grow is too important to disappoint because of low quality seeds. If you want to grow the finest cannabis genetics which will give you harvests of top quality cannabis then choose Dutch Passion. As the original inventors of feminised seeds, with over 30 years of breeding success you can trust Dutch Passion seeds for your next grow. With over 50 cannabis cups and thousands of repeat growers you are in safe hands.
Dutch Passion’s collection of cannabis cup winning strains can be shipped to the EU, UK and elsewhere. Buy the best cannabis seeds online from the original inventor of feminised seeds. Our feminised seeds are shipped in discrete packaging and can be delivered in 24 hours. In the unlikely event of any issues you have our award winning service and support team waiting to help and support.
Top 5 Indoor Feminized Seeds
If you are an indoor grower looking for the finest quality indoor feminised seeds then choose a seed supplier that shares your passion for the highest standards. With decades of breeding experience we have a collection of the best cannabis cup winning strains which will grow easily across all grow conditions with heavy yields, superb taste and rich, connoisseur flavours. Our blogs on the Top-5 Indica seeds and our Top-5 Sativa seeds are must-reads for any serious growers looking for the very best feminised indoor seeds.
|Sugar Bomb Punch®||XXL||○○○○○|
|THC: ■ Low ■ Medium ■ High ■ Very High ■ Extremely High|
Top 5 Outdoor Feminized Seeds
Growing cannabis outdoors is the cheapest way to produce your own medical/recreational weed. You need a sheltered, private and sunny grow location with good quality moist soil. You also need fully proven outdoor feminised cannabis seeds. Dutch Passion has one of the most respected outdoor weed seed collections available. These seeds will grow outdoors in Dutch/UK climates (or similar) with strong pest and weather/mold resistance.
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Top 5 THC-Rich Feminized Seeds
For many modern growers achieving a satisfying harvest means growing fully proven, consistently THC rich cannabis strains. THC rich cannabis strains deliver a strong psycho active effect which dissolve stress and anxiety leaving the user mentally relaxed and physically refreshed. THC rich feminised seeds remain one of Dutch Passion’s greatest strengths.
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Top 5 Medical Feminized Seeds
Some medical growers find that THC rich cannabis strains are the most helpful. Others find that CBD rich strains offer better physical effects with a slightly milder (less intense) high. Much depends on your own personal preferences. Dutch Passion offer a range of THC rich strains, CBD rich strains and strains with balanced levels of THC:CBD. It’s important to state that each medical user will have their own preferences for indica or sativa, THC or CBD. This means the medical grower will need to research the strains most likely to help them.
|CBD Charlotte’s Angel®||XL||○○○○○|
|CBD Skunk Haze®||XL||○○○○○|
|THC: ■ Low ■ Medium ■ High ■ Very High ■ Extremely High|
Top 10 Tips For Growing Feminised Seeds
Growing your own cannabis is really easy. With the best feminised seeds you will grow better quality cannabis than you can buy. Home grown cannabis is easy and enjoyable to grow and cheaper than buying it. Here are our top 10 tips for growers.
1. Choose your feminised cannabis seeds and your supplier carefully!
Even the very best growers can’t produce top quality buds from second rate genetics. You need to use the best quality feminised seeds, grown from the finest quality genetics. Dutch Passion were the original inventors of feminised seeds. Since inventing feminised seeds, the Dutch Passion team have constantly strived to further improve the results achievable from them.
Don’t cut corners when it comes to the choice of your cannabis seeds. The cost of the cannabis seeds is a very small part of the final overall harvest value. It pays you to research your options carefully. Does your seed supplier have a good track record in feminised seeds? Have they been able to gain any professional recognition with cannabis cups? Has your seed supplier stood the test of time and remained at the top of their profession for decades?
2. Try not to over-complicate your grow
Gain experience slowly, don’t be tempted to try complicated grow techniques (such as deep water culture hydroponics) until you have completed several successful grows. Often, people will start growing in large containers of soil. This minimises the need to quickly become an expert in nutrients, and allows an easy way to understand the basics. Cannabis isn’t difficult to grow, it’s called weed for good reasons! The new grower is encouraged to learn the fundamentals of cannabis growing before attempting to learn more technically demanding skills and techniques. Organic growing in soil is recommended and Biotabs is good nutrient line for beginners to start with.
3. Continual improvement of your grow room
Try to learn something from each grow, improve your skills and grow experience, learn what you can from the internet and books. Avoid temperature extremes, indoor plants don’t like temperatures above 30ºC, nor do they like being much below 20ºC. Indoor growers typically like to keep the temperature around a steady 24-25ºC with the lights on, and a couple of degrees cooler at lights out.
Many growers prepare their water the day before it’s required. This allows the temperature of the water to match that of the grow room. Never use ice cold water, it will shock the roots. Some growers feel that allowing the nutrient mix to stand for a day before use allows any Chlorine (often used during water treatment) to be released from the water.
Experienced cultivators insist on using pH meters to ensure their water and feed solutions are at the correct pH. Likewise, they will often use EC meters to monitor the electrical conductivity of their feed solutions. EC, or electrical conductivity, is a measure of nutrient concentration. Meters should always be calibrated and checked before use. Professional growers will always have spare meters available in case one fails.
4. Growing feminised seeds outdoors is easy too
Growing feminised seeds outdoors is even easier than growing indoors. In the northern hemisphere, feminised seeds are often harvested around October. Often the grower will germinate the feminised seeds indoors. (see the Dutch Passion guide on best ways to germinate cannabis seeds). This gives the seeds the best possible start, and protects the seedlings from the worst of the early season weather while they are at their most vulnerable. After a couple of weeks of indoor cultivation, the seedlings can then be planted outdoors when the weather is warm and the last frost has gone.
5. Experiment with different periods of vegetative growth
It’s common to use around 4-5 weeks of vegetative growth (before bloom) when growing feminised seeds indoors. But some growers get great results with longer veg periods of 6-10 weeks. The extra time spent in veg allows for a larger final plant size. This is great if you prefer to have smaller numbers of XL yielding plants and have the space to accommodate them.
For some growers who don’t mind large plant numbers, it’s possible to grow feminised seeds with just 1-2 weeks of vegetative growth (or even none at all!). The result will be a fast ‘Sea Of Green’ harvest of medium size plants which may often have the bulk of their buds on the main bloom.
For outdoor growing it is recommended to pre-grow (18 hours of light per day) the plants indoor for at least a few weeks. Between 3-4 weeks will usually do, use even longer VEG periods if you are looking for the biggest outdoor plants as possible. It will ensure a stronger and healthier plant that will cope better with tough outdoor growing conditions than a young, freshly sprouted, seedling.
6. Avoid the temptation to over feed your cannabis plants
One of the most common mistakes, especially from less experienced growers, is the temptation to over feed their plants. Over-feeding plants can permanently damage and ‘burn’ the roots of cannabis plants, especially young plants. It is crucial to start feeding nutrients at low concentrations and steadily increase. At the first sign of nutrient burn (perhaps you will note the ends of the leaves turning white/yellow and eventually brown and crispy) you should reduce nutrient concentration immediately and consider a water flush for several days in a row.
Overfeeding your plants will not increase size or potency, but it can permanently stunt the growth of your plants. Understand your nutrients well and never add more nutrients than necessary. Less experienced growers may benefit from a simpler nutrient regime, avoiding an over-complicated array of nutrients until they are more experienced.
7. Avoid the temptation to over water your cannabis plants
Along with using excessively high nutrient concentrations, another of the most common errors is the tendency to over water their cannabis plants. This is also a frequent error seen among new growers. Cannabis roots need oxygen to thrive and grow well, roots do not grow well in water logged soil. Using excessively ‘wet’ soil will limit root growth, this will restrict the final size and quality of the plant.
Experienced growers will often use a moisture sensor in their grow medium which measures moisture content and indicates when the roots are too dry. Products like the Blumat Moisture meter are recommended to prevent over watering. Note that numerous growers find new grow containers such as fabric grow containers or Air-pots are a great way to improve levels of root oxygenation.
Compared to traditional grow containers, felt grow sacks and air-pots allow good levels of root aeration and are recommended. Another tip is to mix some coco medium through your soil, this will improve the aeration levels too.
8. Find out when you prefer to harvest your buds
Feminised seeds offer the perfect amount of grower control over the final result. You can opt for long or short veg periods and have some control over the final plant size and yield. Connoisseur growers also know whether they prefer their buds harvested on time, or perhaps a little early/late. Some growers find that giving the buds an extra week or two in bloom can give a heavier, ‘stonier’ feel to the high.
Conversely, harvesting a little earlier may allow a faster harvest and perhaps a slightly more ‘lively’ or energetic quality to the high. Much depends on your personal preference. But the next time you harvest a plant grown from feminised seeds, consider harvesting a portion of the buds earlier than usual as well as harvesting some buds later than usual. After curing, try comparing the buds and see if you have a strong preference.
9. Consider upgrading to LED lighting
As your experience improves, consider LED lighting. LED is more expensive than HPS, but it is used extensively by serious growers. HPS lights were never designed for cannabis cultivation, they were simply a cheap option which worked. LED lights have a spectrum optimised for cannabis growing and they emit less heat than HPS. LED growers find they use less electricity and have less heat issues compared to HPS growers. But the main benefit of LED is the scope for quality/potency improvements. Most growers find they can push potency and flavour to new levels by upgrading to LED, and would therefore never switch back to HPS.
10. UV supplemental lighting
Some growers are starting to use supplemental UV lighting to boost the potency of their harvests. The idea is to mimic the effects of the UV content in the sun’s rays. Professional cannabis growers have found that adding UVB to their grow room can improve cannabinoid content. THC levels can increase by 10-25% relatively.
Historically, the cheapest way to add UVB to the grow room is to add a few ‘reptile tubes’. These are fluorescent tubes with a high UVB output designed for indoor lizard owners. Usually, cannabis growers add UVB for 2-3 hours per day for the last 2-3 weeks of bloom. But some UVB specialists claim that a small background presence of UVB can be used from the start of the grow.
Other types of UV lighting, like UV-A, are being explored as well. First reports showed UV-A could have significant effects on terpenes and the aroma of cannabis, as well as having a small effect on photosynthesis. UVC is used for sterilisation, to kill bacteria or get rid of pathogens, but is very damaging to all living things in a high dosage.
Dutch Passion: original inventors of feminised cannabis seeds and leading providers of feminised seeds with the finest genetics. Get yours today!