The world is now becoming more aware of the wonders and benefit of marijuana. That is why there are now more people using cannabis than ever before as states and countries are now beginning to accept this recreational and medicinal drug.
Due to the increase of cannabis use, some users are now turning into growers. For some, it is now better to grow their own cannabis plants at home either for use or for profit. And, if you are just starting to grow your own plants, you might want to use autoflowering cannabis seeds.
What are Autoflowering Cannabis Seeds?
Simply put, autoflowering cannabis seeds are seeds that will produce autoflowering marijuana plants. These plants will transition from the vegetative state to the flowering phase regardless of the number of light and dark hours they get. In short, it only takes time and maturity for them to begin to flower.
Autoflowering plants can trace their roots back to the cannabis ruderalis plant, which is considered to be the third species of cannabis. This strain of cannabis is usually found in northern areas that have shorter days and summers. That means that those environments do not get as much sunlight as other regions.
Because cannabis ruderalis has adapted to such an environment for thousands of years, it has developed an ability to move to the flowering phase by relying on time instead of the photoperiod like indicas and sativas do. In a sense, the lack of sunlight has allowed them to evolve into plants that do not rely on light to flower.
Modern breeding techniques have allowed breeders to mix the genetics of cannabis ruderalis to that of conventional indicas and sativas to form the seeds of new strains called autoflowering cannabis plants. These plants usually retain the effects and flavor of their original parent strain but will always have the autoflowering traits of their ruderalis lineage.
The original autoflowering strain is the Lowryder, which is a really short cannabis plant. The Dwarf Lowryder has since become a usual parent strain for breeders looking to develop more types of autoflowering cannabis plants.
What are the benefits of growing autoflowering seeds?
- They are autoflowering
This is the most obvious benefit you can get from these seeds. Autoflowering seeds will develop into plants that will flower regardless of the number of light and dark hours they get. That means that you do not have to monitor how much light they get throughout the day as they will always move to the flowering stage with the passage of time.
- They are easier to grow
There are a lot of reasons why autoflowering cannabis seeds are easier to cultivate. Other than the fact that they will flower through maturity, they do not require a lot of nutrients and care. In a sense, you will be able to save time and money as these plants are not so demanding when it comes to food.
Another reason why they are easy to grow is that they are very hardy and resilient plants. Due to how cannabis ruderalis has adapted to the harsh northern climates, autoflowering cannabis plants can withstand diseases, pests, and adverse changes in the environment.
Because of how they are generally easier to cultivate, autoflowering cannabis seeds are simply a good choice for beginner growers or for those not wanting to waste a lot of time and effort when growing cannabis.
- They are ideal for stealth growing
Truth be told, not all regions and states accept marijuana legally or socially. This is why there are growers that are trying to stay as stealthy as possible when growing marijuana plants. In that sense, autoflowering cannabis seeds are great because they grow up to become shorter plants. The shorter the plant, the stealthier they are.
- They grow quicker than normal strains
Autoflowering cannabis plants grow so rapidly that there are strains that only need about six weeks before they are ready for harvest. What that means for you is that you can harvest their buds more times in a single year than most other types of strains. More harvests mean more buds for use or for profit.
The Case Against Autoflowering Cannabis Seeds
- They have low THC levels
A common characteristic among all autoflowering strains is that they are generally less potent compared to normal strains. Some strains may have retained the traits and effects of their parent but they will always have lower concentrations of THC. That means that they are not best for those looking for strong marijuana strains with potent psychedelic effects.
- They tend to have low yields
As mentioned, autoflowering cannabis seeds end up becoming smaller and shorter plants. Because they are small, they end up with smaller buds. And, as you might know, smaller buds means lower yields. That said, autoflowering seeds are not for growers looking for high-yielding cannabis strains.
- They are generally boring
Robin Nichols is of the opinion that it is boring to grow autoflowering seeds because they do not pose a challenge due to their resilience, hardiness, and autoflowering capabilities. While this isn’t really a bad trait, it might become a chore to grow seeds that really do not need a lot of your care and attention.
Are Autoflowering Seeds For Me?
If you are looking for quick-growing plants that can be harvested in rapid succession in a single year, then you might want to go for autoflowering seeds that not only grow fast but are also easy to cultivate. But, if you are looking for seeds that develop into high-yielding strains with potent effects, then you might want to look elsewhere especially if your market prefers marijuana with high THC levels.
The answer to that question really depends on what your goals are and on the reasons why you are growing your own cannabis plants. Not all growers have the same goals but all of them can agree that it won’t hurt you if you try to grow your own autoflowering cannabis seeds if you can spare a little bit of time and effort.