Marijuana, often referred to as cannabis, is one of the oldest cultivated plants in the world and has a long tradition in spiritual and cultural contexts as well as in the medical field.
The seeds of the marijuana plant are also known as hemp seeds or cannabis seeds and have been used for the cultivation of useful and medicinal plants for thousands of years. There is a huge variety of varieties and new breeds that differ in properties, aroma and effect. Likewise, there are a number of ways that cannabis can be grown for recreational or commercial use.
This article provides information about the history, biodiversity and cultivation of marijuana and provides useful knowledge on the subject.
The history of marijuana goes way back. Already more than 12,000 years ago, hemp was cultivated as a useful plant in Asia and over the millennia it was also used by other advanced cultures. In the Middle Ages, the robust hemp fibers were used, among other things, as strings for longbows and also for paper production - for example, the famous Gutenberg Bible was printed on hemp paper. In shipping, the resilient plant was used to make rope and sails. In the 20th century, hemp cultivation was severely reduced and replaced by other crops such as tobacco.
In the early 1990s, however, cannabis experienced a comeback - since then, not only the recreational, but also the agricultural cultivation of the plant has steadily increased. In Germany, too, the cultivation of industrial hemp was approved at this time. Today, hemp is used, among other things, as animal feed and as an intoxicant and medicinal product. In recent years, marijuana has been legalized in more and more countries, making it illegal to sell cannabis seeds. Nevertheless, the production of the plant is far behind the demand, which also explains the increased interest in home cultivation.
Origin and distribution
The cannabis plant most likely has its geographical origin in Central Asia , where it is still considered a special crop today. Through human intervention, hemp has been spreading steadily for thousands of years, which is why the natural distribution area can no longer be clearly defined. Marijuana can now be found all over the world, both in wild and cultivated forms.
Sativa and Indica
Cannabis plants can be roughly divided into two genetic categories : sativa and indica. The differences here are mainly in the properties, the effect and the growth of the plants. Sativa strains tend to be slightly higher in THC and lower in CBD, while indica strains are the other way around. Depending on the genetic composition of the varieties, the effect of the plant will be different. The plants can be used either for medicinal purposes or as an intoxicant.
Hemp was already used in ancient China as a remedy and against rheumatism, malaria, inflammation and pain. Even today, medicinal cannabis plants, especially those with a high CBD content, are available in all forms and varieties. CBD is known for its properties that are said to have a calming, anti-inflammatory and balancing effect on humans. Until recently, official medicines with cannabis were only approved in Germany for spasticity and multiple sclerosis, for example, but nowadays there is also a right to the prescription of cannabis medicines for other diseases.
One form of growing cannabis is growing from seeds. Through years of breeding, there are different types of seeds that are suitable for different purposes.
Feminized seeds make growing your own cannabis a breeze for both novice and experienced growers alike. The complicated process of identifying the sex of the plant during the growing process is eliminated as feminized plants are genetically engineered to give a high probability of producing female plants . These have the advantage of developing large bud sites and thus producing large yields. Feminized plants also essentially retain the characteristics of the parent genetics during reproduction and develop homogeneously, guaranteeing a high level of genetic stability.
Photoperiod feminized plants flower depending on the light cycle . During the growth phase they need about 18 hours of light a day. Once exposed to 12 hours of light and 12 hours of darkness, the plants will start developing their buds.
Autoflowering seeds are genetically engineered to flower automatically, regardless of the light cycle . For this reason, they are also called autoflowering. They are therefore comparatively easy to grow and also ideal for beginners.
Autoflowering seeds have a short growth cycle , often lasting just a few weeks. The plants are correspondingly small and compact - but they can still deliver good yields. Because of their discreet size, these cannabis plants are well-suited to indoor cultivation . They are also very robust and require little maintenance.
Regular cannabis seeds represent the original seed form. They produce male and female plants in roughly equal proportions, making them ideal for experienced growers who want to experiment with new strains. Without them, the great variety of cannabis strains could not be maintained, because regular seeds offer countless crossbreeding possibilities due to their diverse phenotypes.
Regular varieties are more resilient and vigorous than other varieties. They not only defy weather-related changes, but also pests and other influences.
Obtaining the Seeds
As a general rule, it makes sense to always source cannabis seeds from trusted, reputable dealers . A secure and privacy-preserving transaction of the purchase should be a matter of course. But is it easy to order cannabis seeds online without any problems? The legal regulations for obtaining and owning cannabis seeds vary by country.
The regulations in Austria are similar to those in most other EU countries. Trading in cannabis seeds is generally not prohibited . So if you order germinable hemp seeds from a seed bank, you are not liable to prosecution. Only when the plant bears flowers that can be used as an intoxicant is the possession of the cannabis plant a punishable offence.
It is different in Germany. Even if the legalization of cannabis is progressing step by step, trading in hemp seeds is still fundamentally prohibited. However, hemp can also be grown in Germany itself with a special permit for medical purposes. In the current era, it is becoming increasingly likely that growing cannabis in small quantities for personal use will become legal without a special permit.
The cost of viable seeds varies by seed bank, breeder, and strain. The effect and the rarity also play a role in the price. As a rule, you can assume that you can buy a cannabis seed from 6 euros , with a lot of leeway upwards.
Health food hemp seeds that are safe for consumption do not contain THC, nor are they germinable. They are therefore much cheaper and only cost a few euros per kilo.
Indoors or outdoors?
In regions where growing cannabis is legal, growing a quality strain outdoors can have many benefits. Depending on the weather conditions and climate of the region, outdoor growing can be particularly rewarding - because nature offers the potential for large plants and heavy yields. At the same time, a lot of energy is saved during cultivation.
On the other hand, if you want to grow cannabis protected from prying eyes from the outside world, or if constant weather conditions cannot be guaranteed, indoor cultivation should be considered. Depending on the size, you will need your own grow room or tent to create the right climatic conditions in terms of light, humidity and temperature.
Growing indoors can require a higher investment of money, time, and energy, but it also comes with some benefits. This allows full control of growing conditions indoors , mimicking an environment such as that found in the tropics, allowing special strains to thrive there as well.
Germination of seeds
In addition to selecting the right seed variety, the correct germination of these seeds is also crucial for the successful cultivation of cannabis. Seeds need three factors to germinate: heat, water, and darkness . This is due to the hard shell, which protects the soft seed core from external influences and also makes it durable for longer cold periods. Only when the cannabis seeds are kept sufficiently moist and warm do they begin to germinate.
There are various ways in which the seeds can be germinated.
Most popular method
The best method for germinating cannabis seeds is to use water in combination with paper towels . The following things are required for this method:
- Two plates or a sealable plastic box
- Kitchen roll
To germinate the seeds, first soak a few sheets of paper towels, about five pieces, with water. Excess water should drain well. Four of these towels are now placed on a plate or in the bottom of the plastic box. Then the seeds are placed one centimeter apart on the paper towels and covered with the last paper towel.
To ensure darkness, the plastic box is closed or another plate is placed over the seeds. Care should now be taken to ensure that the seeds are exposed to the right temperature for germination. As a rule, 27 to 33 degrees are optimal.
Every 10 hours you should check whether the paper handkerchiefs are still damp. Otherwise it's now: wait, wait, wait. Some types of seed take a little longer to germinate, while others form a sprout after just a few hours or days. After successful germination, the seed with the small taproot should be planted about 5 mm deep in the ground.
Tip : If the temperature is too low for germination, the seeds in their container can also be placed on the heater, protected with a towel.
In garden soil
In garden soil, cannabis seeds can only be germinated from mid-May, as night frost severely impairs the germination process. To do this, the seed should be planted about a centimeter deep in the fresh soil. The soil should be moist but not wet, otherwise there is a risk of rot. A thin sheet of plastic over the pot can help create a greenhouse climate and help the seed germinate faster. After about a week the first shoot should be visible - from now on it is important to keep the plant well moistened.
However, germination in the soil is generally not recommended , as the germination rate is up to 40% lower than with the paper towel method.
In the water glass
Theoretically, seeds can also be germinated in a glass of water. To do this, a cup or glass should be filled with lukewarm water and the seeds should be soaked there for about 12 hours. Two damp paper towels are then placed in a plastic bowl or on a flat plate and the seeds placed between them. With this method, too, it should be ensured that the paper towels are always kept moist and that the temperature is even at around 25 degrees.
All methods of germinating cannabis seeds have one thing in common: they do not guarantee that a plant will actually grow from the seed. Hemp seeds are a natural product that you can never be sure is healthy and will germinate well. It is therefore always the case that a seed does not germinate despite patience and care.
Where can you get cannabis seeds?
You can now buy seeds from well-known seed banks from all over the world online. Seeds66 offers a wide selection of the best cannabis strains and will send them to your home safely and conveniently.
How much does a cannabis seed cost?
The price of a cannabis seed varies depending on the strain, effect and breeder. As a rule, prices start at around 6 euros per seed, but particularly rare varieties can sometimes cost 20 euros or more.
Are seeds illegal?
In Austria, buying cannabis seeds is completely legal. Anyone who orders cannabis seeds on the Internet is therefore not liable to prosecution. Germany, on the other hand, is the only country in the EU where trading in cannabis seeds is prohibited. However, the seeds can still be ordered online and sent to Germany. If the authorities become aware of this, legal action may be possible - but this is very rare in practice.
Which cannabis seeds for beginners?
Autoflowering cannabis seeds are particularly suitable for beginners, as they flower independently of the light cycle. In addition, they have a comparatively short growth cycle and are robust to external influences such as temperature fluctuations.
The plant marijuana has a long tradition and has been used by many cultures for medicinal or spiritual purposes. Nowadays, the legalization of cannabis is becoming more and more important - accordingly, the interest in home cultivation with hemp seeds is increasing. Once the right strain has been selected and the seed has successfully germinated, your cannabis plants can thrive in your own home.