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what does a weed seed look like

We hear this question all the time from clients and beginner growers, and the answer is a resounding no. There is simply no way to tell the sex of a cannabis seed just by looking at it.

The color and feel of a seed, on the other hand, can tell you a little more about its maturity and, potential to germinate or grow into a healthy seedling.

Growing Seeds From A Bag (Bagseed)

A quick web search will bring up all kinds of myths about how to tell female cannabis seeds from males. One of the most popular ones comes from a chart showing 5 different seeds that claims that the female seeds have “a perfectly round volcano-like depression at the bottom (from where the seed was attached to the plant).”

The one true method to test the genetic potential of a seed is to simply put it in the soil. It won’t take too long to see the results. This option is best for the hobby home grower who has time and space to spare for a risky project. Growers cultivating cannabis for commercial use likely don’t have the excess time to invest.

It’s important to only conduct this test if you are planning to germinate the seeds immediately afterwards. The viable seeds that sunk to the bottom of the glass will have taken in water, crossing the membrane of the seed and signalling that it’s time to come to life—activating germination.

There are a few indicators that will give you a sense of whether the seed is worth germinating.

Cannabis used for hemp production has been selected for other traits, including a low THC content, so as to comply with the 2018 Farm Bill. Consequently, many varieties of hemp produce significant quantities of CBD.

Keep a close eye on the temperature and moisture level of the soil to keep the seed happy. It’s very delicate at this stage. Use a spray bottle to water it—over-watering can suffocate and kill the delicate sprout.

Are you ready to grow?

Some seeds germinate very rapidly while others can take a while, but generally, seeds should germinate in 3-10 days. If it’s been two weeks and a seed hasn’t sprouted, it’s probably a dud and won’t sprout.

Cannabis plant sex organs appear on nodes, the points where branches grow off from the main stalk.

Autoflowers can be started in early spring and will flower during the longest days of summer, taking advantage of high quality light to get bigger yields. Or, if you get a late start in the growing season, you can start autoflowers in May or June and harvest in the fall.

One drawback of clones is they need to be taken during the vegetative stage of a plant—flower is too late—so if you have a small setup with only one light, it can be hard to keep clones alive while flowering other plants, because the two need different amounts of light.

To test the viability of a seed you can place the seed in a glass with distilled water. Seeds that sink within 2 hours have sufficient mass. These seeds generally have a better chance of sprouting than seeds that still float.

Fertile cannabis seeds are black, dark brown, red-brown or gray with a shiny glow as if there is a bit of wax on the peel. Cannabis seeds with a different color such as white, yellow or light green will probably also germinate, but indicate lesser quality. Such seeds have been harvested too early and haven’t had enough time to ripen.

Cannabis seeds have a unique shape. They are oval, have the shape of a drop and are small in size. On average, a cannabis seed is about 2 to 5 mm long and 2 to 3 mm thick. If you want to know what you can expect in advance, then we can advise you to take a look at the seeds of a tomato.

Float test

Although it isn’t always visible with the blind eye, on a quality cannabis seed you can see a pattern of “tiger stripes” or dark spots.

A well ripened cannabis seed had sufficient time for hardening its shell. Healthy cannabis seeds are therefore provided with a hard smooth skin without cracks. You can test the hardness of the shell by taking the seed between your fingers and applying gentle pressure. Immature seeds will easily crack or crumble while qualitative cannabis seeds won’t damage.

Some people believe you can see the gender of the strain based on the appearance of the seeds. Well, we can tell you that ain’t possible. Both female and male seeds look exactly the same.

The quality of a seed can be partially assessed by looking at the appearance. However, you have to know what a healthy cannabis seed looks like and that can be difficult. Even for the experienced grower. In this blog we therefore answer various questions such as: what do weed seeds look like and how can you see if a cannabis seed is healthy and viable?