If you are growing your own marijuana plants back at home either to meet the increasingly high demands of weed in the market or to keep your own personal stash, you probably already know that there are a lot of different types of cannabis seeds you can choose from. Similar to strains, not all seeds are made equal. That is why we are here to compare two of the most popular seed types: autoflower marijuana and feminized marijuana.
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What are Autoflowering Marijuana Seeds?
Autoflowering marijuana seeds have the genetics of the ruderalis strain, which is widely regarded as the third main species of cannabis. Strains belonging to cannabis ruderalis are known to originate from northern areas, where there is less light available during the days.
Because of that, this species of cannabis has learned to adapt to its environment and can proceed to the flowering stage through the passage of time instead of relying on a change n photoperiod. In other words, cannabis ruderalis doesn’t require a certain amount of light and dark hours to flower.
By breeding ruderalis genetics with that of indica and/or sativa, breeders and researchers alike have been able to develop autoflowering marijuana strains that can move from the vegetative stage to the flowering phase with age.
What are Feminized Marijuana Seeds?
Cannabis plants are similar to almost any kind of organism in the sense that there are also male and female flowers. The male marijuana plants do not produce buds but, instead, develop pollen sacs that would pollinate nearby female flowers. Meanwhile, female cannabis plants develop buds that can be harvested or pollinated to produce seeds. There is about a 50-50 chance that seeds turn out to be either male or female plants.
While breeders can benefit a lot by having male plants when they are developing new strains, the same cannot be said for those growing marijuana for profit. Because male plants do not have buds, they are almost entirely useless. Only the female plants can be harvested and used. In that sense, half of your efforts and seeds go to waste.
Feminized seeds were developed to answer that problem. By producing seeds that almost always end up becoming female plants, you will be able to maximize your profits and yields without having to waste time growing and discarding useless male plants.
Benefits of Autoflowering Seeds and Feminized Seeds
- Your plants will proceed to the flowering stage regardless of the light and dark hours they get.
- According to Crystal Wilson, they do not require a lot of nutrients and mainly live off water in the early stages of their growth. That means you can save money for nutrients.
- They grow a lot faster than most other strains. Some even require only six to seven weeks before they are ready for harvest.
- Because they grow faster, you can harvest them more times in a single year.
- They are resistant to a lot of adverse and environmental conditions due to how cannabis ruderalis has been able to adapt to extreme northern climates. That means that it is easier to grow autoflowering strains.
- These plants tend to be small and are great for those looking to grow stealthy marijuana plants.
- Obviously, feminized seeds will give you only female plants.
- Only the female plants produce buds, which are harvested and used. Male plants don’t.
- You don’t have to waste time and effort growing and cultivating seeds that would eventually turn out to be male.
- Because you have a near 100% success rate of getting female plants, you can make sure that all of your cannabis is profitable.
- Female plants are useful for breeding purposes as long as you have some male plants hidden.
Disadvantages of Autoflowering Seeds and Feminized Seeds
- Because they are smaller, they tend to have smaller buds as well. This means that they are not as high-yielding as regular strains.
- They tend to have low levels of THC. That means that they are not very potent and will not give you the kind of kick you can expect from other strains.
- These seeds can still produce male plants.
- Using feminized seeds means that you will not get male plants, which are quite useful for breeding new strains or for producing seeds of the same strain.
- Feminized seeds tend to be more expensive compared to regular seeds.
So What’s the Right Seed for Me?
Knowing which seed to use really depends on your goals. Using autoflowering can give you faster-growing plants and more harvests in a single year. However, the yields are not as high and there is still the possibility of getting male plants. That said, these seeds are best for those looking for a quick and easy harvest because autoflowering seeds do not require a lot of time and effort.
Meanwhile, feminized seeds may not be as fast-growing or as easy to cultivate as autoflowering seeds but they can be just as profitable because of how they will always produce female flowers. These seeds are best for those looking to maximize profits out of regular strains by making sure all plants produce buds.