It is a potentially catastrophic situation for commercial growers, however, as hermaphrodites (or “herms,” as some people call them), are full of seeds and not sellable or desired. Just keep in mind that the male cannabis crop is not entirely useless; a fact we discuss in the next section.
Despite their reputation, a male crop is not as hopeless as many may think. Sure, these crops are not as potent as female crops in terms of their THC production, but they contain their fair share of cannabinoids. As some of the sugar leaves are slightly resinous, you can potentially enjoy a mild high too.
Also, they make sexing cannabis – and knowing how to tell if your plant is male or female before flowering – totally irrelevant. On the downside, clones are expensive. While there’s typically a big difference in cost for recreational or medical patients (MMJ cardholders usually get a 50% price reduction or thereabouts), you can expect to pay around $20-$30 for a single plant.
Male vs. Female Marijuana Plants – A Quick Rundown
Before we conclude, we have to include a quick story of a good friend of ours that recently carried out his first grow. He was a total rookie and came to us with all the basic “first-timer” questions:
Marijuana has two primary growing stages; the vegetative stage and the flowering stage. The vegetative stage begins when the cannabis seed starts to sprout and grow. It lasts around six weeks. At that point, the plant displays signs of pre-flowering and will enter into the second (flowering) life stage.
How Can You Determine a Cannabis Plant’s Gender?
A female cannabis plant means you will have better nugs! If you intend to cultivate marijuana, the most likely goal is to produce usable, smokable, or sellable product in the end. Therefore, you only want the female plant.
Until now, we have not talked much about hermaphrodite cannabis plants in our little “plant sex” discussion. A hermaphrodite is a plant that has both male and female reproductive parts. An example is a female marijuana plant that can produce both flowering buds and male pollen sacs. Hermaphrodites are just as “dangerous” as male plants because they can pollinate an entire female crop.
However, once the plant is about 6 weeks old, it will usually show signs of “pre-flowers” which will alert you to the gender before the beginning of the flowering stage.
Click on thumbnails for larger picture
Regular Marijuana plants reveal their gender in two situations:
As stated above the male plant will grow sacs. The female plants do not grow sacs they start to grow pistols which are like skinny little fingers then the buds start to grow.
If you are new to growing marijuana you need to know that you want to grow specifically female pot plants VS male pot plants. The reason you want to grow female marijuana plants is to have buds growing. The marijuana buds are where the trichomes and terpenes are and that’s where the majority of the THC is in your plant if your interest is getting stoned.
The Female Marijuana Plant
The pollen sacs on the male plant will start to grow once you introduce shorter periods of light to the plant as this imitates the time of year that your plants would start to reproduce outside. You will start to notice these tiny little balls or sacs appearing in the node region.
The seeds actually take away some of the smoothness of the smoke. The taste can be a bit hard to inhale and the seeds will pop while you are smoking them causing your joint to blow up or the pot to be flung out of your pipe or bong. Nobody wants that to happen.
The Difference between Male and Female Marijuana Plants Explained
The other option is to keep a very close eye on the plants daily once you start them in the flowering stage and once a male plant has been identified take it out of the grow room.