Gender is quite a rare occasion in the plant world, but some plants indeed have a rigid division between female and male items. Thus, in the world of hermaphrodite plants, cannabis takes a special place. No grower wants to see such a plant in their garden because only female plants can yield smokeable buds. Here is a guide on gender identification and measures a regular grower may take to maximize their chances of growing useful plants with high yields.
Why Does Gender Matter?
Once you decide to grow yourself a bush of weed for personal use, you definitely hope that the time you spend on watering, cutting, and nourishing it won't be spent in vain. That's why it's vital to take proper care of the gender identification of your plants. The reason for such regard to gender is that only female plants have value, and if you miss the vital moment, your plant may grow useless. Male plants have small sacks with seeds located at the stem's nodes. As a rule, they are grouped in grapes and are of a small size. Female plants are distinguished by thin white hair growing at the plant’s pistils.
How to Identify a Hermaphrodite?
Many beginners don’t even know the gender signs of cannabis plants, often asking, “what does a hermaphrodite cannabis plant look like?” Here is an image of such a plant, showing that both male and female signs are represented on one stem.
If you have a hermaphrodite weed plant, it will display the signs of both genders at the same time. For instance, it will have white hair on the plant’s pistils and small sacks with seeds on its nodes. Once you see those signs, you need to identify the percentage of each gender signs’ presence. Thus, if the plant is dominantly female, you may still save it by removing male parts from the nodes and letting it grow further as a female-only plant.
How to Minimize the Chances of Growing a Hermaphrodite?
Dealing with the problem of hermaphroditism in the cannabis world requires a thorough understanding of what may go wrong. First, botanists claim that hermaphrodite plants emerge due to the impact of genetic and environmental factors. The first category cannot be affected by human effort; you have to put up with the outcome. Nevertheless, the second category is adjustable, as the human grower is the one creating environmental conditions for their plants. Here’s what you need to do to avoid growing hermaphrodites in your weed garden:
- Cannabis plants are susceptible to environmental stress of any kind, so you need to ensure that their growth is not accompanied by severe fluctuations, especially in the flowering period.
- The change of dark and light periods should correspond to the natural biorhythms, making outdoor growing much better than placing your plant on the kitchen windowsill.
- Don’t overheat the plants, avoiding temperatures higher than 270C. It’s better to consider indoor growing if you live in a hot location.
- Don’t delay harvesting, as a wrong period of bud collection may ruin the whole yield.
- Make the irrigation just right, without over-watering or under-watering the plants on a regular basis.
- Don’t abuse fertilizers; they are required to a minimal degree as cannabis grows well without external help.
- Take care of the plants’ protection against mites and insects as such stress can trigger hermaphroditism as well.
- Treat your plants carefully, avoiding harm to the roots, stem, and branches. Broken or injured plants are much more prone to hermaphroditism.
We know that it sounds too hard to accomplish, but care and experience will do their job, helping you avoid the major hurdles of growing healthy cannabis plants.
What to Do with a Hermaphrodite?
Most growers are concerned by one principal question, “can you smoke hermaphrodite weed?" Widespread prejudice says that smokeable weed can't be produced from these plants, making them useless. However, things are not as bad as they might seem, at least not in all cases.
To see whether you can derive any value from a hermaphrodite cannabis plant, you need to determine the percentage of each gender's presentation in a specific item. Most plants exemplify a dominant gender, thus allowing growers to remove the other gender's signs carefully, allowing the plant to grow further without trouble. Thus, if your plant is, say, 90% female and only 10% male, you can remove the male bags from its stem in the hope of the female plant's survival.
As you can see, understanding whether your carefully grown plant is a hermaphrodite is a vital stage of the growing process. If you let the situation go and neglect this issue, your plant will likely not yield any smokeable buds, which will be a waste of your precious time and effort. Thus, we recommend carefully checking your plants' gender and taking relevant measures in the proper period of the plant's growth to achieve the maximum effect of your cannabis growing endeavor.