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Determining The Sex of Your Medical Marijuana Plants

How to Spot the Gender Differences in Your Marijuana Plants 

Botanists have a frustrating time determining the exact taxonomy of all the cannabis varieties. The debate never ends and likely never will. However, there is no debate that cannabis varieties are dioecious (appearing in male and female counterparts) and occasionally express intersexed plants.

Cannabis is Often Intersexed

Cannabis plants are not only intersexed, but their physical structure can also be changed by the simple application of specific compounds or stressors.

According to research from 1982, the application of “silver nitrate (AgNO3; 50 and 100 μg per plant) and silver thiosulphate anionic complex (Ag(S2O3) 2 (3-) ; STS; 25, 50 and 100 μg per plant) to female plants of Cannabis sativa induced the formation of reduced male, intersexual and fully altered male flowers.”

Given their flexibility, it’s important to be able to recognize what male plants look like in order to cull them from the herd of female plants.

How to Spot Male Plants

When attempting to identify female plants at their earliest point, research from 2019 shows that one should look for “rather a dramatic change in shoot apex architecture” in which it forms a “compound racemose inflorescence structure.”

In other words, at roughly six to eight weeks old, cannabis plants reach sexual maturity and begin to show pre-flowers. 

Using a 5x-10x loupe, you can peer in on the fourth or fifth branch nodes to view the earliest pre-flowers.

Males are identified by their pre-flowers appearing as sacs while females produce pairs of bracts that eventually become the stigma of the flower. 

What To Do With Male Cannabis Plants

Throw them out. That prevents them from pollinating your female plants. 

However, you can also:

  • Save them for breeding purposes.

  • Create low-quality concentrates.

  • Make clothing or other household items with the fiber.

  • Take photos of them and sell them on stock photography sites.

  • Feed them to pigs. Vice says it makes them happy.

  • Juice them! They still have medicinal properties.

If you found this article about identifying male cannabis useful, please share it with your friends!

Grow Your Own Medical Marijuana in Missouri

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