Top 10 Reasons To Grow Feminized Cannabis
5 min

Top 10 Reasons To Grow Feminized Cannabis

5 min

Since their creation in the 1990s, feminized seeds have been a firm favourite in the cannabis community. With so many varieties available, there's little wonder as to why they're so popular. Here, we take a look at the top 10 reasons to grow feminized cannabis. So if you've only stuck to autoflowers thus far, be ready to make the jump.

With premium-quality genetics and a simply staggering range to choose from, more and more growers are flocking to feminized seeds. There was a time when buying cannabis seeds was a mixed bag—quite literally! The results were often disappointing, as both male and female plants could sprout at random. With feminized seeds, this problem is completely averted, as the male chromosomes have been removed, resulting in exclusively female plants.

What are the advantages of feminized cannabis seeds?

What Are The Advantages Of Feminized Cannabis Seeds?

Running the gamut from indica to sativa, stoning to energising, massive to compact, there are feminized strain out there for any grower looking to raise female plants. But how do feminized strains fare in the garden or grow room? What do these seeds have to offer that others simply don't?

Below, explore the top 10 reasons to grow feminized seeds.

1. Feminized seeds save on substrate, fertiliser, and insecticides

Cannabis growing becomes more expensive the more plants you grow. Were you to use regular seeds in your growing operation, you would have to invest in substrate, plant nutrition, insect protection, etc. for all of your plants until it came time to distinguish the males from the females. So all that extra soil and fertiliser used for your young male plants essentially goes to waste—and doesn’t do anything for your back pocket either. You can stretch out your supply of these products much longer by only growing plants that actually make it to harvest (aka females).

2. Germinate only the seeds you need

 Germinate only the seeds you need

Up until the 1990s, cannabis growers were forced to germinate roughly twice the number of seeds they planned to grow, as likely half of them would turn out male. As it takes several weeks before plants can be accurately sexed, you end up wasting time, energy, and, most of all, seeds! Male plants do serve a purpose, but not for those seeking smokable bud. Feminized seeds have essentially eradicated this issue. With a near-100% chance of producing female plants, growers can rest assured the seeds they do germinate will eventually bear viable buds. The result? Maximised space and resources.

3. Feminized seeds save on time, resources, and work

Without the risk of producing male plants, and subsequently dealing with those plants, the work involved in raising a crop of female cannabis plants is greatly reduced. This also means less time spent performing tasks that won’t increase the quality or quantity of your harvest. Instead, use that “extra” time to train and maintain your plants for the best results! Using your time wisely is everything in life, and cannabis growing in particular.

4. Maximum efficiency of grow space

Maximum efficiency of grow space

Not all of us have the luxury of living somewhere with constant warm weather or acres of land on which to cultivate cannabis. However, that doesn't mean you can't make the most of the growing space available to you. With feminized strains, you can tailor your environment to fit only the number of plants you choose to grow from the outset. Not only that, but feminized strains tend to be primed to deliver great results even in slightly cramped or short spaces. This means you can achieve a successful bounty in closets, cupboards, and secret spaces outside.

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5. Feminized seeds are more powerful

While the average potency of autoflowering strains is significantly higher than it once was, the truth is that feminized photoperiod strains are the queens of THC. With levels reaching into the 30%+ range in the modern era, potency has never been higher than it is in current feminized strains. That said, while they have reliable genetics on their side, the overall quality and potency of feminized cannabis is very much reliant on the grower themselves. Providing ideal environmental conditions plays a huge role in the final chemical composition of the buds.

6. Buds are richer in resin

Buds are richer in resin

With an abundance of trichomes—glands that churn out terpenes and cannabinoids—feminized plants will often be richer in resin than autoflowers. Growers will not only be treated to a more visually appealing plant, but can also unlock a whole other world of cannabis by turning their harvested, cured buds into delicious cannabis concentrates such as hash, wax, and oil.

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7. No sexing required

As mentioned, given that feminized seeds produce only female plants, no “sexing” of the specimens is required. This makes for an extremely smooth ride—one that is certainly more beginner-friendly. With regular seeds, if you fail to sex your plants on time, you risk the males pollinating the females and spoiling your crop of buds. Sexing is usually performed beginning at the late-vegetative/early flowering stage, and requires a keen eye and patience.

8. Larger yields

Larger yields

Feminized seeds are primed to produce larger yields than autoflowers, as they are not inhibited by Cannabis ruderalis genetics. As feminized photoperiod plants tend to spend more time in the vegetative stage (and often the flowering stage too), they can be trained to produce exceptional harvests. It’s also possible to find feminized strains that produce huge returns without much intervention. In other words, if harvest weight is your main priority, feminized is the way to go.

9. Huge variety

Simply put, growers are spoilt for choice when it comes to finding feminized seeds. There are thousands upon thousands of varieties out there, each bearing a unique cannabinoid and terpene profile, flowering time, yield, height, etc. Feminized strains also cater for all levels of expertise, and are ideal even for those looking to achieve their first harvest. While it's true that feminized seeds require more of a hands-on approach in comparison to autoflowers, they can be a great jumping-off point for those looking to hone their skills.

10. You can start training early on

You can start training early on

Feminized strains can be trained from early on in the vegetative phase. Both low-stress and high-stress training techniques can be used to control height, maximise light exposure, and boost yields. ScrOG is a popular LST technique that creates a uniform screen of buds and maximises the potential of just a few plants. Topping is a popular high-stress training method that forces the production of two main stems by chopping off the tip of the plant. If you're interested in training but are afraid of hurting your plant, rest assured that feminized plants were made to be manipulated.

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What else do you need to know about feminized strains?

What else do you need to know about feminized strains?

There you have it, our top 10 reasons to grow feminized seeds. We’re sure we've inspired you to pick up a few packs for yourself. However, we'd be remiss if we didn't touch on a few other important aspects of growing feminized seeds.

  • Photoperiod-dependent: Although they don’t require sexing, feminized photoperiod cultivars will not progress into the flowering phase until natural light (outdoors) or artificial light is reduced to around 12 hours per day. In other words, indoor growers are in charge of choosing when to initiate flowering, and outdoor growers are largely at the whims of the seasons (although light deprivation techniques can be used to give you a bit more control).

  • Can be sensitive: Furthermore, while they tend to display exceptional vigour, some feminized strains are less resilient to moisture, mould, and certain types of pests than autoflowers. Be sure to perform a little research on your genetics to see how it responds to certain climates and conditions.

  • Not for home breeders: Feminized strains are obviously not geared toward breeders. Instead, these individuals tend to go for regular seeds for their experiments. This is why, despite the massive popularity of feminized cultivars, we still see regular seeds on the market. How else would we come up with all these novel strains!

Feminized cannabis seeds to get you started

Feminized cannabis seeds to get you started

There is no right or wrong choice when it comes to feminized seeds, but certain strains come with stats that are simply too good not to share. With that in mind, here are a couple suggestions for superb feminized seeds to start out with.

Purple Punch (Zamnesia Seeds)

Purple Punch puts her money where her mouth is, boasting a compact structure, fast flowering time, and truly impressive yields. In just 8–9 weeks of flowering, up to 650g/m² is possible indoors, and up to 800g/plant outdoors! Perhaps even better, this 90% indica bears 21% THC and a body slamming high that will soon have you understanding the depth behind her name. To top it off—flavour notes of apple pie, caramel, clove…

Purple Punch (Zamnesia Seeds) feminized

Parents: Granddaddy Purple x Larry OG
Genetics: 90% Indica / 10% Sativa
Flowering Time: 8-9 weeks from seed to harvest
THC: 21%
CBD: 0-1%
Flowering Type: Photoperiod

Critical Kush (Barney’s Farm)

Critical Kush is another feminized seed bound to impress. Also able to provide a hefty harvest of up to 650g/m² indoors, this powerhouse contains a massive 25% THC and, intriguingly, 2% CBD. In the grow-op, Critical Kush reaches heights of around 2m, but she can be trained to remain closer to the ground if necessary. Taking 7–8 weeks to flower, this strain serves up a whopping stone that will leave you in Critical condition.

It all comes down to preference and resources when picking feminized seeds. Need a little inspiration? Check out the Zamnesia Seedfinder to get paired with your ideal strain in just six easy steps.

Critical Kush (Barney's Farm) feminized

Parents: Critical Mass x O.G. Kush
Genetics: 100% Indica
Flowering Time: 7-8 weeks
THC: 25%
CBD: 2%
Flowering Type: Photoperiod

Feminized genetics: only the beginning

Since their inception in the 90s, feminized strains have been a mainstay in the cannabis community. However, leading seed banks aren't resting on their laurels when it comes to developing new seeds. With constant innovations in breeding and cannabinoid research, we’re likely to experience even tastier flavours, faster flowering times, and more tailored effects in the feminized strains to come.

Adam Parsons
Adam Parsons
Professional cannabis journalist, copywriter, and author Adam Parsons is a long-time staff member of Zamnesia. Tasked with covering a wide range of topics from CBD to psychedelics and everything in between, Adam creates blog posts, guides, and explores an ever-growing range of products.
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