Is Your Cannabis Plant Male or Female? .

Cannabis is intriguing in more ways than one. The plant is either a male or female. If you are looking to create seeds for harvesting strains, you will need both species to flower in your garden. Take away the males from the garden soon after and the female plants will sprout large, seedless, resinous buds called sensimilla. These are the buds that are ripe for consumption.

However, seeded buds are not considered high quality. Seeded buds have lesser flavour and a harsher, unpleasant taste when you smoke. But the seeds are required to introduce the next generation of plants to harvest more strains and continue the cycle.

Growing High Quality Cannabis

Get Clones from a Reputable Breeder

It is essential to determine the gender of your cannabis plant to grow sensimilla. The other way to harvest a particular strain is through clones. But the danger lies in tainted clones. If left unattended, they can halt all growth. The crucial step is to look for clones from a reputable source. Look for them in an authorized dispensary, nursery or get them from in-house cultivars.

If you are purchasing seeds from a third party, find out the source. Only legitimate seeds will yield high quality results or they will fall prey to disease, pests, or chemical residues in pesticides. Incorrectly labelled strains may not get you what you want. Clean your clones gently before transplanting them to eliminate the chance of diseases.

Acquire Both Male and Female Plants

The gender of your cannabis plant is important to develop new strains and seeds. Identifying the gender is not difficult if you know how to. Female cannabis “pre-flowers” as they are called, grow fine hairy stigma whereas male ones produce tiny, round balls at the nodes. Many say that they resemble miniature bananas.

The pollen is released when these banana-like pods split open, getting caught in the fine hair in female plants. Pre-flowers sprout four to six weeks after growth. That is the time you can identify the gender of the plant. The trick is to dispose the males plants before they release pollen into the females so the buds bloom bigger and more healthier.

It might be a bit challenging to spot the gender of pre-flowers with the naked eye but a magnifying glass may help. If spot males, isolate them from the female plants as early as possible so you can create more space to grow bigger, healthier females and stop the males from pollinating them. Feminized seeds grow faster and need less materials for healthy growth.

Hermaphrodite Plants

Hermaphrodite cannabis plants contain both male and female organs. Feminized cannabis seeds are often produced by introducing a hermaphrodite to several female plants and have them generate male organs so you don’t take up too much  time to identify the males and isolate them from the female plants.


Outdoor cultivation is usually responsible for hermaphrodite cannabis plants where the environment, weather and temperature cannot be controlled. Indoor cultivation under controlled conditions eliminates the risk of growing hermaphrodite plants. If you take too long to harvest, the plants may turn hermaphrodite by pollinating itself.


When the fine trichomes in the flowers turn amber in colour, you know it’s time to harvest. For a heady sativa strain, wait till they turn milky. Amber trichomes give a more sedating effect.

Cannabis grows best and yields the highest quality flowers when the environment is stable without excessive fluctuations. (Source: Leafly)

Growing Cannabis at Home? Here’s When You Know It’s The Right Time to Harvest.

Finally you can grow cannabis legally at home! If you don’t have a green thumb, don’t fret! All you need is the right guidance to become a master cultivator. But do remember that only up to four plants can be grown legally at home in Canada, so refrain from dreaming of a garden. Make sure to get high quality seeds or clones from a legal source for optimum results.

Harvesting Cannabis Flowers

Things become a little more challenging when the plants start to flower. This is when the growth slows and the buds appear, giving out that pungent aroma that’s typical of cannabis. You know that cannabis flowers are ready to be harvested when the scent intensifies, the fine hairy trichomes develop and change colour. Proper timing is crucial to the process. Harvesting too early will result in flowers that do not produce much psychoactive effects while harvesting too late may cause the plants to self-pollinate and rot.

Trichome Colour

The easiest way to know the right time to harvest is by keeping an eye on the cannabis buds. The tiny trichomes change colour as they mature from clear to cloudy and opaque. When you see flecks of golden amber on the upper buds, you know they are ripe. The uppermost buds mature earlier than the ones below. Don’t wait for all the trichomes to turn yellow or the potency of THC will decrease into a soothing, relaxing CBN that may put you to sleep.

Mature Leaves

Mature cannabis leaves turn yellow in colour. If you don’t use fertilizers, they can start falling off. Mature leaves also start drying and curling as it starts pulling less water during the final phase. That’s the time you know your cannabis plant is ready to harvest. Sometimes, pests could be responsible for the curling and drying leaves. If the pistils and stigmas are brown or the trichomes are flecked with amber, get ready to harvest. Medicinal cannabis growers prefer higher levels of CBN so the weed is left to mature for longer but be careful about late harvests. Some strains may self-pollinate and turn intersex.

Auto - Flowering and Photoperiodic

Cannabis cultivators fall into two categories:

  • Auto-flowering: Auto-flowering cannabis rapidly start flowering after they reach a vegetative state. Autoflowering strains take about 10 weeks after the seedling stage to harvest the buds.

  • Photoperiodic: This strain of cannabis require a specific duration of regulated light intensity to sprout flowers from a vegetative state. This method affects bud dormancy, branching and potency.

Mohyuddin Mirza, botany specialist at Phoenix Life Sciences International and cannabis production consultant told Weedmaps News “(Photoperiodic) cannabis plants, like other plants, are totally dependent on what happens when changes are made to the light duration and light intensity. Photoperiod also affects other aspects of plant development, such as bud dormancy and branching. It regulates cannabis through internal signals that are expressed in the architecture, or structure of the plant. In photoperiodic cannabis varieties, intense flowering and branching of the inflorescence is triggered by a reduction in daylight hours.”

“Once a cannabis plant has reached a certain stage of vegetative growth, change in photoperiod from long days (18 hours of light/6 hours of darkness) to short days, (12 hours of light and 12 hours of darkness), initiates flowering. This applies to both Cannabis sativa and indica strains,” he explained.

However, new research believes differently. Dr. Ben Rimon at the Agricultural Research Organization, Volcani Center of Israel, researched on cannabis inflorescence and published his findings in Frontiers in Plant Science on April 2, 2019.

He said that “The most significant finding is that a short photoperiod orchestrates intense branching, producing inflorescence structure, with floral initiation that occurs independently of short photoperiod.” The flower initiation is not a result of short photoperiodic conditions, but more likely influenced by the age of the plant, the mother plant’s development, and internal signals. In short, it means that the flowering initiation is not dependent on short photoperiod as earlier believed.

Drying and Curing

The process of drying and curing are greatly responsible for improving the flavour of the flowers. It breaks down chlorophyll resulting in a smoother taste that makes it especially effective for medicinal use. Drying and curing reduces anxiety and may even increase cannabinoid potency and shelf-life so you can enjoy your home-grown cannabis for months.

Amazing Health Benefits of Cooking with Fresh, Raw Cannabis.

In just a few months, cannabis edibles will be out in the market. The American Culinary Federation predicts that cannabis-infused food will be the top trend in 2019, introducing a new dining experience.

MacNeil, a specialist in molecular cooking in Cape Breton, Nova Scotia, has a little tip to make canna-chefs perfect the art of cooking with cannabis strains. “You should only use legally produced cannabis to ensure it’s clean and safe. People don’t scrutinize cannabis the way they scrutinize food, but they should,” he said to the cannabis-based web portal, Leafly. Usually, dried and cured cannabis is used in kitchens. But fresh, raw cannabis not only lends more flavour but also has a host of benefits.

Superfood Cannabis

New research puts Cannabis and Hemp at par with the superfoods kale, avocado, spinach and broccoli, from a nutritional perspective. Dr. William Courtney, MD, a member of the International Cannabinoid Research Society, the International Association of Cannabis as Medicine, the Society of Clinical Cannabis and the American Academy of Cannabinoid Medicine, says that Marijuana should not be treated as a medicine for specific ailments but as a dietary essential.

Raw cannabis infused in foods activates the brain’s cannabinoid system, more effectively by releasing antioxidants that flush out damaged cells in the body. Dried cannabis can do the same, Courtney says, but raw cannabis adds more flavour because of fresh terpenes in the flowers.

Aromatic Terpenes in Fresh Cannabis

Cannabis strains come in several aromatic varieties, just like wine grapes. Citrus, lavender, mint, mango, banana, berry and pine are just some of them. Cannabis terpenes are responsible for the different aromas. They combine with Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) and Cannabidiol (CBD) to produce the distinctive flavours that leave you feeling light and satiated after a deliciously infused meal.

Health Benefits of Raw Cannabis

Nutrient-Rich: Fresh, raw cannabis is loaded with nutrients, fibers, proteins, balanced proportions of essential amino acids and antioxidants to boost the immune system. Raw marijuana has a well balanced ratio of omega-3 fatty acids and omega-6 fatty acids that together promote healthy cell regeneration, boost the immune system, reduce the risk of heart disease, diabetes, and many types of cancer.

Inhibits Cancer Cell-Growth: In its raw state, THC in cannabis is not psychoactive. This means that all the nutrients in the plant will be well utilized by the body without leaving you high. Nutrients like Cannabidiolic Acid (CBD-A) and Tetrahydrocannabinolic Acid (THC-A) in cannabis are powerful healers that treat serious ailments like cancer. CBD-A prohibits the COX-2 enzyme that is found in aggressive breast tumours. A recent study conducted at Hiroshima International University in 2017 January, researchers found that the CBD-A in the plant also prohibited cancer metastasis. THC-A is said to be neuroprotective, antispasmodic, and an effective pain-reliever.

Benefits of Chlorophyll: Much of the chlorophyll in the cannabis plant is lost during the drying and curing process. This means that much of the dietary benefits of chlorophyll are lost with it, such as rejuvenating the body at the cellular level. Chlorophyll prevents DNA damage, detoxifies the body, reduces inflammation and increases iron absorption.

Increased Aroma and Flavour: Raw cannabis is full of the terpenes that are lost during the drying and curing process as well. Terpenes are responsible for the aroma and flavour during consumption and are also loaded with medicinal properties. They have antifungal, antibacterial and anticancer properties.

How to Consume Raw Cannabis

Now that we are familiar with the numerous health benefits of raw cannabis, it is important to know the best ways to consume them to maximize benefits. Here’s what the canna-chefs suggest:

Fresh Juices: Weed can be a bit bitter on the tongue so the best way to enjoy the nutrient-rich properties of the plant is by blending it with fruits and beverages to enhance the taste. Add a hint of spice such as nutmeg for more flavour.

Refreshing Salads: Chop up your regular salad greens, fruits and raw vegetables with a hint of cannabis for refreshing, health-enhancing salads that don’t leave you high unlike weed edibles.

Cooking with cannabis needs a practiced hand to find out the correct amounts to bring out the flavour. Experts recommend no more than 2.5 mg of bud for those who are venturing into cannabis-infused fare for the first time. It’s better to try the cuisine in a restaurant noted for cannabis foods or take tips from a chef before you start experimenting in the kitchen yourself. Bon appetit!


Hemp Wick or Butane Lighter?.

Inhaling hot butane from lighters is a health risk when smokers use it to light their joints. Butane also affects the flavour of fine cannabis and burns at a higher temperature to bring out the full potency which destroys much of the aromatic terpenes. Wood or paper matches are not much different. There’s the risk of inhaling burned sulphur.

This is one reason why cigar lovers are known to use strips of wood to light their Cubans. This is also the reason why hemp wick is a popular lighting choice for many cannabis connoisseurs.

Why Use Hemp Wick?


Hemp is coated with beeswax to form a slow burning thread that offers a safer, better, and environmentally alternative to butane lighters and matchsticks. The fine film of beeswax is wrapped around a lighter or spool to slow down the burning. It is cheaper than butane lighters, burns at a lower temperature than butane and does not ruin the taste of the terpenes.

A roll of hemp wick lasts for a long time even if you are a regular smoker.

Wicks help you control the flame with more precision. You can inhale more cannabinoids and terpenes since the lower temperature doesn’t burn them out.


Hemp wick, however, requires skill to use. It requires hand-eye coordination and the beeswax can drip if it’s not high quality. Glass ones with a cork look elegant but are more expensive.

Where to Find Hemp Wicks

Hemp wick dispensers are inexpensive, easy to use and available in a variety of colours, shapes and sizes. A tiny spool costs about a dollar or two while bigger rolls cost more but are available in different diameters too. Thicker the wick, the slower it is to burn but thicker wicks are more commonly used in candles.

Why Do You Need a Cannabis Grinder?.

Rolling a joint the right way helps it to burn evenly so that the effects can be savoured fully. When you’ve spent money on a prime bud, you wouldn’t want it to burn unevenly and go up in smoke in no time. This is why you need a cannabis grinder. A grinder helps you shred and break down the flower buds into tiny fragments so all the particles burn and release their flavour the cannabinoids and terpenes in them uniformly. What helps is having a good grinder that holds the marijuana together to be crushed evenly.

Which Grinder is Best

A high-quality metal grinder works best. These have stacks of chambers with rows of sharp edges and a series of holes between them at the base that catch the bits of ground marijuana preventing them from being ground too finely. Just scoop up the ground pot from the second chamber for use.

Cool Grinding Hacks

Cannabis Grinder: Avoid grinding all the marijuana at once. Mix some of the shredded weed on top with the finer bits while rolling the joint. This way, the grip of the pot inside the roll is better.

  • Break-up the buds and place them between the teeth of the grinder after you’ve taken off the lid.

  • Avoid placing the cannabis directly on the centre where the magnet is located.

  • Replace the cap and rotate about 10 times until most of the bud has fallen through the holes.

  • The cannabinoid-rich trichomes collect at the base of the second chamber.

  • Load up this unprocessed, unpressed, fine brown or pale green powder “kief” from the bottom chamber in your pipe, blunts, vapourizer, bowls or bongs for a potent experience.

Coffee Grinder: If you don’t have a grinder or can’t find the perfect one, try using a coffee grinder until you get your hands on the real thing. Just make sure it is well cleaned. Don’t be surprised to get an extra kick out of your coffee or feel a bit high when you use the grinder next time. If there are bits of marijuana left in them, your morning cup of coffee itself will give you a high. How fun is that?

Pestle and Mortar: Tradition never goes out of fashion. Try using a pestle and mortar to grind your marijuana buds. Make sure the buds are dry first. Moist buds are harder to disintegrate and grind finely.

Knife and Chopping Board: The good old knife and chopping board always works. Avoid a serrated blade. The tiny, delicate buds may escape through the gaps and not give you the desired result. Go easy on the speed and observe caution. Try crushing the longer strands with your fingers holding your palm flat, facing up and using the fingers of the other to break the weed apart like many do with hand rolled tobacco cigarettes.

How to Clean the Grinder

  • After a few uses, your grinder may turn sticky with resin from the kief making it harder to twist open the grinder cap.

  • Clean off the sticky mess by applying salt and isopropyl alcohol.

  • Use a paintbrush or toothbrush to clean off the kief between the blades.

  • Freeze your grinder before cleaning to get rid of stubborn, sticky off the kief.

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Difference between CBD and THC.

Marijuana leaves contain more than 113 chemical compounds. These compounds are referred to as cannabinoids which interact with our bodies through the endocannabinoid system.

THC (tetrahydrocannabinol) and CBD (cannabidiol) are the most well-known cannabinoids. It has been proven that THC is the reason why we get a cannabis high, but there hasn’t been much research gone into what CBD actually does. Recent studies have shown that CBD can counteract the effects of THC, and can provide a range of medical benefits and symptom relief.

Here are some of the differences between CBD and THC:

Psychological Interactions

CBD is generally accepted for its non-psychoactive medical benefits while THC is the compound that is known to get you high. THC is the main component that is responsible for the mind-altering effects of the plant. You get high because your brain changes how it functions when the THC binds to CB1 (cannabinoid 1) receptors, which are found in your brain.

THC can bind with your CB1 receptors because it mimics an existing and naturally produced neurotransmitter called anandamide, also known as the bliss molecule. Anandamide is an endocannabinoid which activates your CB1 receptors. When your produce anandamide naturally, it increases your appetite and allows you to experience rewarding effects after you exercise (like when you experience a “high” after running a long distance). When you introduce THC to your body, it produces the blissful feelings because it can activate your CB1 receptors.

Although CBD doesn’t bind to your CB1 receptors (meaning you don’t get the same psychoactive effect as THC), it does give you other effects of the physiology of your mind and body. Research has been done that shows CBD may act as a mild antidepressant and as an antipsychotic because of how it interacts with your brain.

Physical Interactions

Your CB1 and CB2 receptors are activated by THC while CBD has a more indirect effect. In your endocannabinoid system, the cannabinoids from marijuana interact with your cannabinoid receptors. Some parts of your skin and muscles contain cannabinoid receptors, which is why external cannabis topicals work.

When THC binds with CB1 it stimulates your body in a certain way. The results will generally be fatigue, relaxation, altered senses, and hunger. On the other hand, CBD does not stimulate your CB1 and CB2 receptors directly, but they will interact with them indirectly which is called modulation.

CBD has the potential to increase the levels of your body’s own naturally produced endocannabinoids because of the way they indirectly interact with your CB1 and CB2 receptors. People use CBD for the therapeutic effects they have on many different receptor systems that run throughout the body.

Medical Uses

CBD and THC have their own library of benefits and uses. CBD can be used to treat or relieve epilepsy, anxiety, and psychosis. THC is used more for its relaxing, pain-relieving, and euphoric effects. Here are a few of the different uses and benefits each of the two cannabinoids have:

Uses for CBD:

  • Anticonvulsant

  • Anti-tumoral

  • Painkiller

  • Anti-anxiety

  • Neuroprotective

  • Anti-inflammatory

  • Antipsychotic

Uses for THC:

  • Increases appetite

  • Painkiller

  • Sleep and drowsiness

  • Relaxation and euphoria

  • Muscle relaxant

  • Antiemetic


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