A guide to buying cannabis seeds
The first couple months of the year is a great time to start planning your cannabis garden to get a head start on the outdoor growing season, which roughly runs from March to November, depending on where you live.
Navigating the cannabis seed market can be challenging when states have different degrees of legality. This guide will answer your questions on buying seeds so you can be on your way to growing your own cannabis.
Is it legal to buy marijuana seeds?
Marijuana seeds are considered a cannabis product just like flower, edibles, and concentrates. Their legality depends on which state you live in. People living in states with adult-use legalization can buy, produce, and sell seeds within their own state, but seeds can’t cross state lines. People living in states with medical marijuana legalization can only buy seeds if they have a medical card.
Seed banks exist outside of the US and can sell them for “souvenir purposes,” but it is illegal to bring seeds into the US and Customs will seize any cannabis seeds they find in packages or on a person.
Where can I buy cannabis seeds?
Many world-renowned seed banks are overseas in the Netherlands, the UK, Spain, and other countries where cannabis laws are less restricted. Seed banks provide seeds from a variety of different breeders.
In states with adult-use legalization or a medical marijuana program, you can buy seeds within your own state, either at a dispensary or through a specific seed company’s website.
How to buy cannabis seeds online
Before you purchase seeds online, you’ll need to figure out what strain you want to grow and what breeder you want to buy from.
Because US federal law still prohibits cannabis, it can be hard to find information on seed banks and breeders. Breeders who have a long history and positive reputation are usually a good place to start. To get an idea of what well-established breeders look like, check out:
- Sensi Seeds
- DNA Genetics
- Green House Seeds
- Southern Humboldt Seed Collective
- Exotic Genetix
You can also do some research and find an online grow journal that details the whole growing process of a specific strain from a particular breeder. Through these, you’ll be able to look over another grower’s specific notes and see pictures of the final results.
If you grow some seeds and like the results, try growing another strain from that same breeder and see how it goes.
How to buy cannabis seeds at a dispensary
Although this option is only available to people living in states with medical and adult-use legalization, buying marijuana seeds at the dispensary is far more straightforward. However, your options are more limited.
Dispensary staff should be able to give you information on the seeds they’re selling, but keep in mind that a lot of dispensaries focus on selling flower and end-products. It’s a good idea to call ahead and talk to staff to see if they are knowledgeable about seeds and can give you specific information on growing.
How to look for quality genetics when buying marijuana seeds
Breeders talk about “unstable genetics,” meaning that a seed’s origin is unknown. Make sure that when you buy a packet of seeds that it or the breeder who produced them can list where the seeds came from and how they were crossed and/or backcrossed to get the seed that you hold in your hand. If you can’t get a seed’s history, it could be anything and the result of poor breeding practices.
An inexperienced breeder might cross a male and a female one time and sell the resulting seeds as a new hybrid strain, but professional breeders usually put their strains through several rounds of backcrossing to stabilize the genetics and ensure consistent plants that reflect those genetics.
Which strain should I grow?
Even one weed plant can produce a lot of buds come harvest time, so make sure you grow a strain you like. Note strains you enjoy when you pick something up at the dispensary or smoke with friends, and look for seeds of it when you want to start growing.
Some strains are easier to grow than others because they are more resistant to mold and pests, so if you’re new to growing, you may want to try an easier strain to start.
Some strains also take longer to grow than others. Depending on whether you’re growing indoors or outdoors, you may want to grow a quicker marijuana strain if you live in a climate that get cold and wet early in the season. For example, indicas are known for having a shorter flowering time than sativas.
All of this information should be available to you when buying quality seeds.
What’s the difference between regular, feminized, and autoflower seeds?
If you buy a packet of regular seeds, they’ll come with a mix of males and females. A lot of cultivators prefer to grow these because they haven’t been backcrossed—essentially inbred—as much as feminized or autoflower seeds. You’ll need to sex out the seeds once their reproductive organs show during the flowering phase and discard the males—because they don’t produce buds and will pollenate females, resulting in seeded flowers.
Seeds can come feminized, meaning you can just put them in soil and start growing for buds. These seeds are guaranteed to be bud-producing females and growing them cuts out the step of having to sex out plants and discard the males.
It also reduces the risk of having a stray male sneak into your crop—just one male can pollinate a huge crop, causing your females to focus their energies on producing seeds instead of buds.
Autoflower plants change from the vegetative to flowering state with age, not the changing of their light cycle. They have a short grow-to-harvest time and can be ready to harvest in as little as 2 ½ to 3 months from when you put the seeds in the ground. The downside is that, typically, they are less potent, but autoflower seeds are great for people who want to grow cannabis but don’t want to spend a lot of time doing it.
How much do marijuana seeds cost?
Cannabis seeds usually come in a pack of 10 or 12 seeds and start at around $40 a pack and go up from there. Some high-end genetics can run between $200 to $500 a pack.
Feminized and autoflower seeds will cost more because more breeding work was put in to creating them and they take less time for the grower to get buds.
How many seeds should I buy? Are they all going to survive?
When you grow any amount of seeds, a percentage of them won’t germinate, even if you get them from a reputable breeder. Always count on a few not germinating or dying off, or roughly 1/4 of the total you put in the ground.
When growing regular seeds, some won’t germinate and some will have to be discarded because they’ll turn out to be males. With feminized seeds, some won’t germinate, but a higher percentage of them will turn into flowering plants because there won’t be any males.
If you want six total cannabis plants to harvest for buds and are growing from regular seeds, start with about 4 times as many, or 24 seeds. Some won’t germinate and some will turn out to be males, and then you’ll want to discard down to the six best phenotypes. If growing feminized seeds, you can probably start with about twice as many seeds in this case (about 12); a couple won’t germinate, and then discard down to the six best phenotypes.
Make sure to always stay within your state’s legal limit of growing plants.
How do I buy strain-specific cannabis seeds?
Strains like Blue Dream, Gelato, and Original Glue have gained in popularity in recent years. Check out these resources on how to buy these types of cannabis seeds:
Pat Goggins contributed to this article.
Navigating the cannabis seed market can be tricky from a legal perspective. Get the answer to your top questions about buying cannabis seeds today.
How to buy weed seeds safely?
There are several ways to safely buy cannabis seeds. In countries, such as the Netherlands, where growing cannabis is legal (read: tolerated), cannabis seeds can often be bought in growshops and coffeeshops. In some countries it is even possible to buy medical marijuana at pharmacies as an MS patient. However, there are still plenty of countries (such as Australia, some parts of the U.S. and countries in Asia) where buying weed is still illegal. So how do you get cannabis seeds?
How do you get cannabis seeds?
How do you get marijuana seeds if you live in a country where buying cannabis seeds is still illegal? Simple, you buy marijuana seeds online. This may sound scary, but especially if you live in a country where you cannot or are not allowed to buy cannabis seeds, this is the only solution. Buying cannabis seeds online is safe and discreet and in most cases they are delivered on time. Even in countries where cannabis seeds are illegal. Luckily, in most European countries you can buy cannabis seeds online without any problems. Would you like to know more about this subject? Read the article ‘Is buying cannabis seeds (online) legal?
What should you pay attention to when buying cannabis seeds online?
When you decide to buy your seeds online, you also want to make sure you receive good seeds. Unfortunately, there are still online shops that scam customers, offer poor customer service, offer no or very few guarantees and sell bad seeds.
To prevent your purchase from turning into a disappointment, it is wise to do some research before making an online purchase. But even if you do a thorough investigation, it can always happen that you buy your cannabis seeds at the wrong place.
To help you find the right seed bank, we’ll give you some useful tips with this checklist below.
- Check the legislation in your country
- Buy at a European seed bank
- Start with a small order
- Divide your order
- Choose a discrete payment method
- Use a different name
- Use a different email address
- Have your shipment delivered in a mailbox
- Choose a shipping method without the need for a signature
1. Check the legislation in your country
Although the law in the Netherlands allows small quantities of cannabis seeds to be sold to customers, this does not mean that if you live abroad, growing and germinating cannabis seeds is allowed in your country. We therefore strongly recommend that you check the lawfulness of cannabis seeds in your country and check the regulations regarding the import of seeds before making a purchase.
2. Buy at a European cannabis shop
If you’ve Googled a bit, you may have noticed that many shops are located in Canada, the United Kingdom and of course the Netherlands. Dutch online cannabis shops are often located in or around Amsterdam: the source where the highest quality seeds come from and where the most knowledge can be found. For the best quality cannabis seeds it is therefore best to order from a reputable (Dutch) seed bank with a long track record.
3. Start with a small order
If you buy cannabis seeds more often from a certain cannabis seed shop then this rule doesn’t apply, but if you’re planning to buy cannabis seeds for the first time and you want to do this safely, then we recommend you start with a small order. After all, with a small order the risks are low. You can test the reliability of the shop, as well as the quality of the seeds, without it costing you a lot of money.
4. Divide your order
If you plan to order multiple (varieties of) seeds, it is advisable to divide your order over multiple purchases. For example, by placing a small order at different times or by buying cannabis seeds from different online providers. If an order does not arrive, there is a good chance that the delivery from the other provider will arrive. As an extra tip: pay attention to delivery guarantees when you make your purchase. For example, Weedseedsexpress offers a delivery guarantee with every purchase.
5. Choose a discrete payment method
Nowadays, online payments with credit cards have become very secure. As with Weedseedsexpress, most shops offer the possibility to buy cannabis seeds with a credit card via an external payment processor.
Buying cannabis seeds with a credit card offers advantages: first of all, the online seed bank only receives the payment without your credit card details. Secondly, the payment processor destroys the customer data after the payment has been made.
Furthermore, reputable online seed banks ensure that no marijuana related descriptions are linked to the transaction (as Weedseedsexpress does by default).
However, are you still a little reluctant to use your credit card? Then there is always a possibility to purchase a prepaid credit card. Often there are also alternative payment options offered such as:]
- Cash money
- Bank transfer
6. Use another name
If you don’t want your name to be associated with marijuana related products, you can choose to order without Track & Trace. You don’t have to sign for the parcel/envelope when it is delivered. In that case you can choose to use a different name, abbreviation or only initials at the mailing address.
7. Use a different email address
Besides changing your name, you can also use a general email address without mentioning your own name. It’s very easy to create a new and free email address for example Gmail or Outlook.com. And do you want to stay completely under the radar when you’re looking for cannabis seeds? Then use the search engine Qwant. This search engine does not store any personal data. No one will ever know that you have typed in ‘How to get cannabis seeds? or ‘How to buy cannabis seeds safely online’ ;).
8. Have your order delivered to a P.O. Box address
There are several seed banks that deliver weed seeds to a P.O. box address. Would you like that too? Then you can easily rent a PO box. Of course, you can also ask friends or family whether they would like to receive the order.
9. Choose a shipping option without signature
Registered mail such as Track & Trace mail usually requires a signature upon receipt. So for privacy reasons you can order without Track & Trace, but the disadvantage is that you cannot track the status of your order.
Buy your cannabis seeds safely and discreetly at Weedseedsexpress
It goes without saying that Weedsexpress complies with all privacy and warranty conditions. In short, when you buy your cannabis seeds from us it is safe and discreet. Would you like to buy online somewhere else? Then it is always good to check the reputation of the shop. You can do this for example Trustpilot.com. Here you will also find reviews about Weedseedsexpress.
Convinced? Take a look at our range of top quality cannabis seeds.
Wondering how to buy weed seeds safely? Check it out and buy via Weedseedsexpress! Get 20% FREE seeds + FREE shipping and the best customer care!