Tag Archives: Seeds

Female and Feminized Seed

22 Mar

X Chromosome

During the 1960’s and 1970’s some cannabis breeders took to experimenting with Colchicine.  Colchicine, a powerful mutagen for both man and beast, stops cell duplication, while the cellcore duplication continues the same.  The end result is a doubling or more of the chromosome set.  This treatment can be beneficial to cannabis because it enforces many properties such as higher production of thc and resistance to disease.  What also resulted, when gender chromosomes doubled, is that male or female chromosomes appear manifold, called Hermaphrodites.  What’s the plant to become?  It becomes all at once.  The result is called feminized or effeminate seed.
Genetically, a cannabis plant is more or less predisposed to become male or female.  This is regulated by 2 chromosomes everyone knows as the X and Y chromosomes.  A plant with 2 XX chromosomes becomes female.  A plant with an X and Y turns into a male.  Plants have hormones that regulate it’s functioning, of which gender is one of those functions.  The hormone balance is genetically determined, and partly influenced by environmental factors.  An example is when plant roots get damaged.  The roots will produce a substance that in turn slows down leaf growth.  The result is male flowers.  When discussing hormone balance you get FEMALE SEED: a female is a plant with XX or only female chromosomes.
When you have a seed with just X chromosomes, you are certain this seed will grow into a plant that is genetically female.  To achieve the XX only plant: a female plant is forced by a hormone called Gibberellic Acid  to produce male flowers, the pollen created contains only X chromosomes, when you offer this pollen to another female plant you can be absolutely certain to get seeds which are 100% XX.  Once again this seed is called FEMALE SEED.  Gibberellic Acid can be found in online.  It takes years for an individual to achieve the proper plant hormone manipulation to get 100% female XX seed.  Supplies therefore fluctuate and there are many different strains available worldwide.


Producing Feminized Seeds

22 Jan
Gibberellic Acid

Gibberellic Acid

Sooner or later every grower is going to want to produce marijuana seeds. Developing a new stable strain is beyond the scope of this discussion and requires the ability to grow hundreds or even thousands of breeding plants. However, just about any grower can manage to preserve some genetics by growing f2 seeds where they have crossed a male and female of the same strain, or can produce a simple cross which would be referred to as strain1xstrain2 for instance white widow crossed with ak-47 would be referred to as a WW x AK-47. You can produce some excellent seed and excellent marijuana this way.

To Feminise or not to Feminise

There are numerous myths surrounding feminized seeds. Feminizing seeds is a bit more work than simply crossing two plants naturally. However it will save you a lot of time in the end. If you make fem seeds properly then there is no increased chance of hermaphrodites and all seeds will be female. This means no wasted time and effort growing males and it means that all your viable seeds produce useful plants, since roughly half of normal seeds are male this effectively doubles the number of seeds you have.

Other times you will have no choice but to produce feminized seed because it will be a female plants genetics that you want to preserve and you won’t have any males. Perhaps you received these genetics via clone or didn’t keep males.

The new thing on the market for commercial Cannabis cultivation are Autoflowering feminized strains. By crossing of the Cannabis ruderalis with Sativa and Indica strains many cultivators have created interesting hybrids which boast benefits from both sides of these families.

Although Sensi Seeds already created the Ruderalis Indica and the Ruderalis Skunk crossing, the first variety to be marketed specifically as ‘Autoflowering cannabis seed’ was the Lowryder #1. This ‘hybrid’ was a crossing between a Ruderalis, a William’s Wonder and a Northern Lights #2. This strain was marketed by ‘The Joint Doctor’ and was honestly speaking not very impressive. The genetics of the ruderalis was still highly present which caused for a very low yield and little psychoactive effect.

Despite these first disappointing results for the grower and user, the interest of the cannabis community was most definitely caught. After the Lowryder #1 the Lowryder #2 was introduced by ´The Joint Doctor´. See also the article:”What are autoflowering cannabis seeds” about auto-flowering seeds.

Auto-flowering cannabis and the easily distributed seed have opened a whole new market in the world of the online grow-shop, making it easy for home growers with shortage of space to grow rewarding cannabis plants in many different varieties.

Selecting Suitable Parents

There are a number of important characteristics when selecting parents. First are you making fem seeds? If you are then both parents will be female. This makes things easier. If not then the best you can do is select a male with characteristics in common with the females you hope to achieve from the seed.

Obviously potency, yield, and psychoactive effects are critical to the selection process. But some other important traits are size, odor, taste, resistance to mold and contaminants, early finishing and consistency.

Collecting and Storing PollenIn order to collect pollen you simply put down newspaper around the base of the plant. The pollen will fall from the plant onto the newspaper. You can then put this newspaper into a plastic bag and store it in the refrigerator or freeze it. Pollen will keep for a few months in the refrigerator and can be used on the next crop. The freezer will extend that to up to six months but gives the pollen a lower chance of viability that increases with time.

Pollinating a Plant

To pollinate a plant you can brush the pollen on a flower with a cotton swab or you can take the plastic bag and wrap the flower inside it and shake. In this way you can selectively pollinate plants and even individual buds and branches.

Male Isolation

A male plant or a plant with male flowers will pollinate your entire crop rendering it seedy. You probably don’t want THAT many seeds so how can you avoid it? Moving the male to another room might work but if that other room shares an air path via ducting or air conditioning then pollen may still find its way. One technique is to construct a male isolation chamber.

A male isolation chamber is simply a transparent container such as a large plastic storage tub turned on its side (available at your local megamart). Get a good sized PC fan that can be powered with pretty much any 12v wall adapter, by splicing together the + (yellow or red on fan, usually dotted on power adapter) and the – wires (black on fan, usually dotted power adapter) just twist with the like wire on the other device and then seal up the connection with electric tape. Then take a filtrate filter and cut out squares that fit the back of the pc fan so that the fan pulls (rather than pushes) air through the filter. Tape several layers of filter to the back of the pc fan so all the air goes through the filter. Now cut a large hole in the top of the plastic container and mount the pc fan over top of it so it pulls air out the box. You can use silicon sealant, latex, whatever you’ve got that gives a good tight seal.

This can be used as is, or you can cut a small intake in the bottom to improve airflow. Pollen won’t be able to escape the intake as long as the fan is moving but you might put filter paper over the intake to protect against fan failures. You can also use grommets to seal holes and run tubing into the chamber in order to water hydroponically from a reservoir outside the chamber. Otherwise you will need to remove the whole chamber to a safe location in order to water the plant or maintain a reservoir kept inside the chamber.

Making Feminised Seed

To make feminized seed you must induce male flowers in a female plant. There is all sorts of information on the Internet about doing this with light stress (light interruptions during flowering) and other forms of stress. The best of the stress techniques is to simply keep the plant in the flowering stage well past ripeness and it will produce a flower.

Stress techniques will work but whatever genetic weakness caused the plants to produce a male flower under stress will be carried on to the seeds. This means the resulting seeds have a known tendency to produce hermaphrodites. Fortunately, environmental stress is not the only way to produce male flowers in a female plant.

The ideal way to produce feminized seed through hormonal alteration of the plant. By adding or inhibiting plant hormones you can cause the plant to produce male flowers. Because you did not select a plant that produces male flowers under stress there is no genetic predisposition to hermaphroditism in the seed vs plants bred between a male and female parent. There are actually a few ways to do this, the easiest I will list here.

Colloidal Silver (CS)

This is the least expensive and most privacy conscious way to produce fem seed. CS has gotten a bad name because there is so much bad information spread around about its production and concentrations. It doesn’t help that there are those who believe in drinking low concentration colloidal silver for good health and there is information mixed in about how to produce that low concentration food grade product. Follow the information here and you will consistently produce effective CS and know how to apply it to get consistent results.

Simply construct a generator using a 9-12v power supply (DC output, if it says AC then its no good) that can deliver at least 250ma (most wall wart type power supplies work, batteries are not recommended since their output varies over time). The supply will have a positive and negative lead, attach silver to each lead (contrary to Internet rumors, you aren’t drinking this is cheap 925 silver is more than pure enough) you can expose the leads by clipping off the round plug at the end and splitting the wires, one will be positive and the other negative just like any old battery. Submerge both leads about 2-3 inches apart in a glass of distilled water (roughly 8oz). Let this run for 8-24hrs (until the liquid reads 12-15ppm) and when you return the liquid will be a purple or silver hue and there may be some precipitate on the bottom.

This liquid is called colloidal silver. It is nothing more or less than fine particles of silver suspended in water so it is a completely natural solution and is safe to handle without any special precautions. The silver inhibits female flowering hormones in cannabis and so the result is that male flowering hormone dominates and male flowers are produced.

To use the silver, spray on a plant or branch three days prior to switching the lights to 12/12 and continue spraying every three days until you see the first male flowers. Repeated applications after the first flowers appear may result in more male flowers and therefore more pollen. As the plant matures it will produce pollen that can be collected and used to pollinate any female flower (including flowers on the same plant).

Silver Thiosulfate (STS)

Only mentioned for completeness. Silver Thiosulfate is more difficult to acquire and works on the same principle as CS. Its application is similar to CS and achieves the same results.

Gibberellic Acid (GA3)

This is probably the most popular way to produce feminized seed. GA3 can be purchased readily in powdered form, a quick search reveals numerous sources on e-bay for as little as $15. Simply add to water to reach 100ppm concentration and spray the plant daily for 10 days during flowering and male flowers will be produced.

Article: Marijuana Cultivation/Producing Seeds http://en.wikibooks.org/wiki/Marijuana_Cultivation/Producing_Seeds

How to Use Colloidal Silver to Produce Feminized Seeds

22 Dec
Colloidal Silver

Colloidal Silver

A very basic description of colloidal silver and it’s actions: It is a solution of pure silver particles suspended in distilled water. It is often taken orally for health benefits (easy to purchase). When used on marijuana plants, it inhibits ethylene production needed (and normally produced) by the plant to produce female flowers, thus forcing the plant to produce male pollen sacs instead. Since there are no male chromosomes, the pollen is female (listed in many places as 99.99% female) and will produce female seeds.

CAUTION: First be completely aware that any part of a plant that you spray with colloidal silver IS NOT SAFE FOR CONSUMPTION (smoking or ingesting). The pollen created is completely safe to use and all seeds created with that pollen are safe.

BE SAFE!!! For this reason, I highly recommend using a complete plant (small clone or plant) to produce your pollen. Separate this plant from all other plants so you do not get colloidal silver spray on any consumable plants.

What you will need:

1) Colloidal Silver (CS) Spray (at least 40 ppm and pure – not too strong either!) and a spray bottle. I purchased Bio-Silver Ultra Colloidal Silver 50 ppm online and it worked.

2) One female plant to turn male. From seed or clone doesn’t matter – but it should be the best looking female with all the characteristics that matter to you, since it will be used as a parent for your seeds. This can be a small plant in a small pot.

3) One female plant to pollinate. You can pollinate just a few flowers on a branch (do not use bottom flowers because they may not produce finished seeds), an entire branch, or the entire plant.

The day before you change your light cycle to 12/12, you will begin to thoroughly mist all new growth areas with the CS spray on the plant you wish to turn male. Repeat this at least once daily until you see male pods forming (use magnifying glass to watch closely – approximately 10 to 21 days). If the plant begins developing flowers quickly (as with auto-flowering strains), spray 2 to 3 times daily (dependent upon the plant’s tolerance of the solution) until you see male pollen sacs forming where female flowers were developing). Once daily is the recommendation unless otherwise needed. Be sure to store your CS in a dark place between uses as light can degrade the CS solution. AND REMEMBER TO AVOID SPRAY TOUCHING CONSUMABLE PLANTS!!!

Once you are sure male sacs are developing, separate this male plant from your females to avoid accidental pollination. I simply took my female-turned-male plant to a different room with no air movement and let it survive on window light. A closet with a CFL would do nicely too. Heat and moisture are pollen killers, so avoid hot or moist areas.

Once male sacs begin to develop on the plant, it will be a bit of time before the majority of the sacs open to release pollen. With the auto strain I did, it was about 2 weeks, but this time varies with different strains. Don’t disturb this plant (no air flow) and simply wait for numerous pollen sacs to open. Even the slightest air draft carries the pollen adrift… but it also makes it so very easy to collect too! When numerous pollen sacs are open, a gentle tap makes the pollen easy to collect on any clean smooth surface like glass or a mirror. It will be slightly yellowish in color. Use immediately, or dry and freeze for later use.

Need I say it is very important to change clothes and wash yourself completely before re-entering your flowering room!!! Pollen is very small and clings to clothing, hair, etc very easily.

Now, if you prepared ahead, you will also have a female plant flowering very nicely by the time you have your pollen. Isolate the plant, or branch, and pollinate. This info isn’t geared towards detailed pollination methods, so please check other sources for that information. I used a Q-tip and tapped it gently over the flowers I wanted to pollinate.

Allow the female plant (or branch) adequate time to finish producing viable seed. If you take her early, your seeds will not be viable. The time needed for viable seeds varies with different strains and can range from 3 to 6 weeks with an average of 4 to 5 weeks.

Wah-lah… you now have feminized seeds… at least that’s what the info said SHOULD happen!

Last… my own experience…

Before deciding to try colloidal silver, I had already purchased 10 regular (not feminized) auto-flowering seeds because I wanted to be able to have male pollen to use to create my own seeds. After planting those seeds, I got to reading about CS and decided to try this too.

Nine out of ten seeds came up. My biggest concerns were that I couldn’t simply start spraying the day before light change because I didn’t have feminized seeds and the strain is auto-flowering. I knew I would have to wait until the plants showed their sex and worried it wouldn’t work because I couldn’t start it soon enough and autoflowering plants go direct into flowering once they preflower.

I ended up with 5 females and 4 males. I watched closely for preflowers and identified the females as quickly as I could. I saved the two best males in case the CS didn’t work. I did find out it is very easy to collect pollen with those first males… and I did pollinate a female just to assure I would have seeds and the CS procedure wasn’t finished by the time the true males pollen was.

I took the largest and best looking female and began to spray her once daily as soon as she clearly showed preflowers. But since this is an auto flowering plant, she began to grow small hairy flowers in the first few days. I increased to spraying the new growth areas (basically small flowers beginning in all nodes) to 2 to 3 times daily for the next 10 days, but this solution is pretty hard on the plant. When I began to feel I was seeing changes (looking at thru 20x magnifying glass), I decreased to once daily again for the remainder of the 21 days it took to have this lil lady turn male.

She put up a good fight. She kept shooting out hairs everywhere and I kept spraying them, which ultimately killed them and turned those female pods into male sacs. I am not at all concerned about hermie traits because she was definitely all girl being forced to grow balls. But balls she did grow in the end! I will also say, her leaves were shriveled pretty bad and her growth was definitely stunted with this procedure – but she ended up giving me all the pollen I would ever need for this strain.

Since it worked with an auto-flowering strain, I have now taken 2 clones from each of the non-auto strains I have vegging (I prefer pure strains, not cross-strains). I will use one to create a small male and the other as a small female to flower. Won’t need to put them in anything but small pots, won’t take up too much room, can remove from the room easily for safe pollination… and will sure give me nice returns with pure strains seeds I can pop anytime I want!!!

I hope others find this useful too – because I am in no way a professional!! If I can do it, so can others!

From the author: Since professional growers produce feminized seeds, I decided to research how they did it. There were a few different ways suggested, but the one that interested me the most was using colloidal silver. Some articles said this is the main way seed growers develop feminized seeds and/or “self” the plant.

This article by Granny420 was originaly published on http://www.420magazine.com/forums/seeds-clones-strains/153838-how-use-colloidal-silver-produce-feminized-seeds.html