shallow focus photography of cannabis plant
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Marijuana plants: What you need to know

By Jevan Soyer. Let me get this out of the way first. All of the activities mentioned in this article are for adults only. That means 18 or 21 years and older which is determined by the laws of your country. If you are reading this from a location where the cultivation of marijuana is illegal then don’t do it. If you the reader is fortunate to be living in a jurisdiction where recreational marijuana is legal and you are allowed to grow the herb for personal use, then this is the article for you. By the way, happy 420!

Marijuana Day – celebrating home grown

April 20th, also known as 420, has become the unofficial “Weed Day” around the world. It is basically Christmas for connoisseurs of marijuana. I am a supporter of home grown and home made as you have control over what you put into your body. This is especially important if you are using the marijuana for medicinal reasons. You would have to make sure that no toxic chemicals were used on the plant, either during cultivation or the shipping process.

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Growing marijuana not like other food crops

Anyone who has tried gardening knows that every plant has its own requirements. Marijuana is no different. If you are limited by the number of plants that you can cultivate, it is in your interest to get the best possible yield from your miniature marijuana plantation.

In researching this article, I went into it thinking that it would be no different from growing any other food crop with which I have a great deal of experience. As it turns out, I was very wrong. Not only does marijuana require a lot of attention, there are limitless options from which to choose, each with pros and cons. This starts from the seed selection.

Chemical, strain and seed of Marijuana

Cannabis, weed, Mary Jane… so many names… it cannot be counted. It is just like the amount of chemicals that have been documented in marijuana, 483 based on my research. This is important because you would need to know what chemical suits your needs. This tells you which strain of marijuana you would be growing and the seeds with which you would need to start.


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Choosing the right Cannabinoid

The 2 most noteworthy chemicals or  cannabinoids in marijuana are Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) and  Cannabidiol (CBD). Each has its own qualities. THC is the chemical that gets you high giving you feelings or euphoria, and where you lose track of time and could escape reality, even if it is just temporarily. It also has a few medicinal uses:

CBD on the other hand has a reputation of being a miracle cure for a myriad of diseases. The list keeps growing but here are the most common uses of CBD:


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Side effects of THC and CBD

Like all drugs both THC and CBD has side effects, some of them are serious depending on your family history and state of mind. I am no doctor, so I would recommend that you consult a physician before you begin self medicating. If you are already using marijuana and suffer from any of these side effects, consult your doctor.

THC causes temporary side effects, such as:

  • increased heart rate
  • coordination problems
  • dry mouth
  • red eyes
  • slower reaction times
  • memory loss
  • anxiety

CBD’s side effects may include:

  • appetite changes
  • fatigue
  • weight loss
  • dizziness
  • diarrhea

Due to the side effects of THC in most countries if you drive a vehicle after using it, you may face the same consequences as drinking alcohol and driving. Do not use marijuana and drive, there are breathalyzers configured to detect marijuana use. If stopped by the police for suspicion of driving under the influence, you may be subjected to same or similar sobriety test that is done for driving under the influence of alcohol.


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Right seeds mean right plants

Feminised Seeds

These popular strains are developed to flower as female plants only and because of this, you can expect feminised cannabis seeds to be 99.99% female. This is most popular in situations where you have limited space to risk cultivating male plants. Read more here.

Auto-Flowering Seeds

These popular strains are bred so they flower based on time instead of light exposure. As one of the more recent additions to the world of cannabis seed cultivation, feminised auto-flowering strains automatically switch from vegetative growth to the flowering stage with age, as opposed to the ratio of light to dark hours. Read more here

Regular Seeds

These strains are not altered or genetically modified. Regular cannabis seeds are totally natural marijuana seeds that have not been chemically altered or genetically modified in any way. They are pure genetics, bred from male and female parents and produce approximately 50% male and 50% female offspring. Male plants are generally culled as they tend to not produce buds and negatively affect the females production of buds.

Despite the popularity of feminized marijuana seeds, regular seeds are still offered by many breeders. Regular cannabis seeds offer the same genetics at a lower price than their feminized versions and often do a better job of retaining the best features of each parent plant. Read more here.



Sativa Seeds

Classified by Carl Linnaeus in the year 1753, Cannabis Sativa varieties have been cultivated for centuries for its hemp fibre and for its psychoactive resins, among the other benefits which the plant has been known to offer, for those who consume it. Originating from equatorial countries in Central America and South East Asia, including the likes of Thailand, India, Mexico and Colombia, Sativa varieties are better suited for warmer climates and hence thrive if grown in the outdoors.

Moreover, the plant’s structure is constructed in such a way whereby it can reach heights up to twenty feet, and thrives in humid atmospheres and tropical climates. The leaves and flowers will also look different, with Sativa strains featuring long, thin foliage and long, cylindrical buds in comparison to stocky, dense Indica varieties. Sativa requires a slightly longer time to grow, taking between ten to sixteen weeks to mature and hence ensuring a higher yield. Want to learn more about Sativa Cannabis. Reda more here.

Indica Seeds

In 1783, French Naturalist, Jean-Baptiste Lamarck came across a new type of cannabis that was distinct and different from the already discovered sativa species. He named it Cannabis indica. This species had adapted to its harsh growing environment in countries like Afghanistan, India, Turkey and Morocco and developed some unique characteristics than other cannabis species. Want to learn more about Indica Cannabis. Read more here.

Indica / Sativa Hybrid Seeds

Indica, Sativa and Hybrid represent the three main categories of Cannabis which are predominantly known across the region with hybrid seeds providing users with benefits from both Indica and Sativa. One of the first known hybrid’s of an Indica and Sativa was known as ‘Skunk’ which was first bred by a group of cannabis growers based in California, USA, Sacred Seed Co., led by David Watson. The resulting strain was revolutionary, producing high yields in relatively short periods of time along with having the innate ability to withstand an array of climatic conditions hence enabling it to be grown indoors, outdoors, and in greenhouses. The latter has been especially helpful to growers since hybrids can be selected for their size, bushiness and other features, catering to specifically to the grower’s requirement. Read more here.

High THC Seeds

Tetrahydrocannabidiol or THC is essentially one of the compounds/cannabinoids which makes up the cannabis plant and is known to be the primary intoxicant found within the plant. Certain cannabis plants have been known to provide high THC content however with the growing aid of technology, breeders have been able to identify ways to increase THC content in plants, via cross-breeding. Breeders have opted for cross-breeding in order to combine the genetics from high THC plants in order to produce the resultant strains, which have the highest THC ratio. Since strains with a high THC content generally provide the user with an intense and stronger cerebral ‘high’ in comparison to any other strain, therefore regular uses tend to opt for the aforementioned to incur the said cerebral ‘high’, which may not be possible with its counterparts. Read more here.

Low THC Seeds

Tetrahydrocannabinol or THC, said to be the most popular and the most abundant cannabinoid found within the Cannabis plant, is strongly psychoactive allowing it to produce a euphoric effect. THC is found within the varieties of the cannabis pants in either a high quantity, usually associated with Indica; moderate to low amounts, usually found within Sativa or near to zero, within Ruderalis. Read more here.

High CBD Seeds

Cannabidiol also referred to as CBD, is one of a number of cannabinoids which makes up the cannabis plant, and is known to be the non-intoxicating compound found within the plant. Accounting for around forty percent of the cannabis plant’s extract, CBD has become the focal point of various researches looking to identify the benefits of the compound, since its non-psychoactive properties do away from the adverse effect of impairing the consumer’s cognitive ability, unlike THC. High-CBD strains allow consumers to remain clear-headed and functional without having to deal with the ‘euphoric high’ which is generally associated with high THC strains. Read more here.

Strain Type Characteristics

Skunk Strains – Skunk strains are strong-smelling and have been likened to the smell of the spray from a skunk. They are believed to have originated in the United States before development by Dutch growers. Skunk is hybrid of Sativa and Indica, dominating both varieties in different strains. This iconic strain first hit the market in the 1970s and has since gone on to give rise to multiple other strains that most cannabis connoisseurs are familiar with.

Blueberry Strains – Blueberry is a popular, flavour-forward Indica-dominant hybrid with a strong genetic backbone. It is a three-way cross between an Indica Afghani, sativa Thai and Purple Thai variant parents. Consists of Indica 80% and sativa 20% of ratio. It first emerged in the late 1970s in the Netherlands by DJ Short, a mysterious but prolific breeder. Blueberry is distinguished by an unmistakable fresh blueberry smell and taste that have made it an enduring favourite. Blueberry is famous worldwide due to its high palatability and flavour.

Cheese Strains – Named for its sharply sour aroma, Cheese is an Indica-dominant hybrid from the U.K. comprises of 80% Indica and 20% Sativa that has achieved widespread popularity for its unique flavour and consistent potency. Cheese is a great strain that originated in the United Kingdom back to 1980s. The strain is a rare female phenotype of Skunk #1 a cross between Afghanistan (Indica), Mexico (Sativa) and Columbia (Sativa). It first appeared between 1988 and 1989 and was quickly cloned and passed on. As a female phenotype, the original strain is only available as a clone, but other breeders have imitated it in seed form by crossing a female Cheese with different Indica strains.

Haze Strains – Haze is a Sativa-dominant cannabis strain with a rich history that dates back to 1960s from California. Because of the long growing seasons and long flowering times, Santa Cruz was the perfect backdrop for this strain. After 2-3 decades, its popularity outgrew and haze became the parent strain to many hybrids worldwide. The genetics have crossed crossing many diverse landraces and oceans, leading to strains that originate in Colombia, Mexico, Thailand and India, eventually resulted in what we know today as the original Haze hybrid strains.  THC: the average THC content in Sativa-dominant strains is around 14%. However, haze stands out with THC ranging from 18% to 27%, Haze is a staple in the cannabis industry for decades. The aromatic buds are well worth the wait of a long. 

Kush Strains – Cannabis is mainly categorised as Sativa, Hybrid, or Indica, based on the morphology of the plant. But it can be further classified such as; Kush, Haze, and Purple. These terms refer to types of cannabis characterised by distinct smells, flavours, effects or geographic regions. Kush is a specific variety of cannabis that descends from the Hindu Kush Mountains and is one of the few geographic regions where the cannabis plant grows natively.

Northern Lights Strains – Northern Lights is an indica marijuana strain made by crossing Afghani with Thai. Northern Lights produces euphoric effects that settle in firmly throughout the body, relaxing muscles and easing the mind. Consumers say this strain has a pungently sweet and spicy flavor profile that is smooth on the exhale. Medical marijuana patients choose Northern Lights to help relieve symptoms associated with depression, stress, pain and insomnia. Growers say this strain features purple and crystal-coated buds and grows best indoors with a flowering time of 45-50 days.

White Widow Strains – White Widow is a hybrid, with a slight Indica dominance. It has a genetic ratio of 60% Indica, 40% sativa. White Widow is upbeat, mesmerising and will relax the body, but won’t cause the mind to want to fall asleep. Originally descending from a breed between South American (sativa) and South Indian Indica in the Netherlands in 1990’s. With both parents being categorized as landrace strains, it seems obvious that White Widow would turn out to become one potent and pure strain, whose effects can be felt in the exact same manner; with strength and clarity.

Sour Diesel Strains – Sour Diesel is a Sativa-dominant marijuana strain, with minimal Indica-like elements. Having a 90% Sativa and 10% Indica ratio. Although Sour Diesel’s genetic lineage is technically not 100% known, it was developed in the ’90s and is thought to have the parent plants of Chem-dawg 91 and Super Skunk; both considered extremely potent and heady strains.

Where to grow your marijuana

Now that you are aware of the options available concerning seeds, you would now have to consider where exactly to plant these seeds. Some varieties do not do well indoors, and other require little maintenance when plated outdoors. If you are stuck with only being able to grow your marijuana indoors, there are solutions.


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If you do not have access to a backyard where you would be able to plant your seeds either directly in the ground or in plant pots, then indoor grow boxes would be the solution for you. The size of grow box obviously would be determined by the space that you have available. By extension the size of your grow box is going to determine which seeds you should purchase.



The nice thing about indoor cultivation is that you can take control of the process, instead of leaving it to blind luck. You can pamper your prized seeds from germination with the Grobo Start kit.

The Grobo Start kit comes with everything you need to make your seeds pop. The kit comes with 3x Peat Pods, 3x Humidity Domes, 1x Tweezers, 2x Seed Covers, 10x Micro Nutrients and 10x Macro Nutrients.

As your plants start to grow they can be transferred to Grobo Solid or Grobo Premium. These grow boxes don’t only provide a safe environment for your plants, but let them grow discretely. No one sees the plants unless you want them to, and it eliminates all odours using carbon filters.

If you are handy with tools, you obviously could build these for yourself and scale them up or down to the size that you want. Here are a few ideas for discreet indoor grow boxes.

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Now that you are armed with all the knowledge to select the right seeds to suit your needs, you can celebrate this year’s 420 by starting your very own marijuana garden. Remember to check your local laws to see firstly if it is legal and what are the limits if it is legal.

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