What Do Weed Seeds Look Like

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Bad cannabis seeds can ruin an entire grow. Here's how to spot them early and save yourself a whole lot of time and effort. Amsterdam Seeds Supply – Don't know yet what do cannabis seeds look like? – Cannabis cup winners The appearance of cannabis seeds is a subject that raises many questions amongst growers. We often get asked about the way cannabis seeds should look, with regards to …

How to Spot Bad Cannabis Seeds [Comprehensive Guide]

You may not realize it, but the quality of your cannabis crop is, in part, determined before you have even begun. Seed quality is an enormous part of growing, so it’s vital to source marijuana seeds from a reputable company.

Sometimes, you can end up with ‘bad’ cannabis seeds that will cause problems later down the line. In some cases, these seeds just won’t germinate. Although this won’t ruin your entire crop, it is a waste of time and money, which can be frustrating.

Today, we will help you work out whether your cannabis seeds are good or bad. Hopefully, this guide will help you to determine which seeds are worthy of your time and which ones are duds.

EDITOR’S CHOICE – Homegrown CannabisCo

Homegrown CannabisCo are the masters when it comes to seeds. Offering a massive variety of cannabis seeds that are well categorized, not only does this company create a resource for superb quality options including feminized seeds, it also provides extensive growing information for those looking for some support along their journey.

What Makes a Cannabis Seed ‘Bad’?

A ‘bad seed’ is any cannabis seed that will cause problems. In some instances, this means a dud seed that never sprouts, wasting your valuable time and a few resources. While dud seeds aren’t damaging, they are irritating.

Another type of bad seeds is male cannabis plants. There’s a 50/50 chance with regular seeds as to whether any given seed is male or female. The problem is that male plants will pollinate the females once they reach maturity, destroying the valuable THC content of female plants.

Having male cannabis plants in your garden is basically a recipe for disaster, so you want to avoid it at all costs. By the way, here’s how to figure out if your plants are male or female.

One way around this is to purchase feminized marijuana seeds. In theory, all seeds in a feminized bunch will be female – unless you buy from a disreputable grower. Unfortunately, there’s no way to tell whether a plant is male or female simply based on the seeds.

This guide will only cover how to tell the difference between a potent seed and a dud seed.

The complete guide…

How to Test Cannabis Seeds

There are several easy methods for testing cannabis seeds. Most of them can be performed before germination, saving you some time and resources. Let’s find out how to check your seeds.

Method #1: The Sight Test

Cannabis seeds are surprisingly beautiful. They have a mottled brown appearance with patches of light and dark, and sometimes gorgeous tiger stripes. The seeds are also quite shiny if you view them close enough.

Sometimes, you can tell if a seed is good or bad just by looking at it. Here’s how to spot a healthy seed:

  • Coloration: A dark coloration with black or gray patches is a sign of a healthy seed. Conversely, white or green seeds are unlikely to germinate because they are not mature. Pale seeds are also more likely to be old and ineffective.
  • Waxy coating: Healthy seeds have a waxy, shiny coating. If it doesn’t, then the seed is likely a dud
  • Cracks: Cannabis seeds should not be cracked. If your seed has cracks in it, it’s probably best to discard it.
  • Shape: The rounder and fatter the seed, the more likely it is to sprout into a healthy plant. Some growers are concerned about large seeds with thick shells but don’t worry. The shell will break down with water.
  • Mildew: Grab a magnifying glass and view the seeds close up. A white, dusty powder is a sign of powdered mildew, which means the seeds have a fungus and should not be planted.
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In some instances, you can crack the seed open and see inside if you can’t tell anything from the outer shell. An oily inside with a musty smell means that the seed has gone bad. Similarly, black inside the seed means that it’s fermenting. Again, it won’t germinate in this instance.

Method #2: The Touch Test

The feel of cannabis seeds is another good indicator. Hold the seed between your thumb and forefinger and give it a light squeeze. Don’t apply too much pressure – just enough to test its integrity.

If the seed cracks under slight pressure, then it’s unusable. It’s likely to be past its sell-by date.

Strong seeds, however, have a better chance of germinating and growing into a healthy plant.

Method #3: The Water Test

Are you still unsure about your cannabis seeds? You can always do a floating test to see if they’re healthy. By the way, this method works for numerous plant seeds and not just cannabis.

Disclaimer: Don’t perform this test unless you’re ready to germinate the plants right away. The water could damage the seed and ruin a perfectly healthy plant if you dry it out afterward.

For this test, you will need a cup, glass, or bowl of warm water. It should be quite warm, but not hot. It also works best with spring water or distilled water.

Add your seeds to the water, and then wait for 1-2 hours. Those that float on the surface are bad seeds that are unlikely to grow, whereas the seeds that sink are probably healthy.

This method is a great way to check your seeds because it’s low effort. You can also test multiple seeds at once, and it’s really cheap and easy to do.

After you’ve done this test, you need to germinate the healthy seeds. At this point, they will have absorbed water, which can damage the seed if you don’t germinate it at this point. Incidentally, germination is the final test for your seeds.

Method #4: The Germination Test

If all else fails, it’s time to germinate. You might have no idea whether your seeds are healthy but attempting to grow them is an easy final test that will separate good seeds from duds.

There are multiple ways to germinate, including planting the seed directly in soil and seeing if it sprouts. This is a pretty ‘old-school’ method, but sometimes, it works.

More commonly, growers use the paper towel method. Dampen a paper towel, ensuring it isn’t soaking wet. Place this on a kitchen plate and put the seeds on top, then put another plate upside-down on top. A moist, dark, warm environment allows the seeds to sprout. Check on the seeds once a day; after germinating, you should see a white taproot emerge.

At this point, you can transplant the seed into its pot. Use a pair of tweezers and handle each seed carefully, being careful not to touch the taproot. The taproot is fragile and may break if you’re not delicate; furthermore, touching it with your hands may contaminate it.

After germination, you’re good to go. Remember to check back as the plants mature to make sure you haven’t got any male cannabis plants.

Waste not, want not!…

How to Buy Good Cannabis Seeds Every Time

It’s recommended to buy feminized cannabis seeds to eliminate the possibility of males ruining your crop. Even so, some subpar retailers will advertise feminized seeds, only to sell regular cannabis seeds.

It’s vital to buy from a reputable seller that you trust. If this is your first time, read reviews on the seed banks to find out what other customers thought. If lots of buyers were disappointed by low-quality seeds, avoid that company!

Unfortunately, you might still get some bad seeds sometimes. Plants are living beings and can be a bit unpredictable – even the seller might not be aware that some of their seeds are duds. With any luck, the majority of seeds you buy will be healthy and good to go.

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The sign of a bad seller is that their seeds are consistently old, dead, and covered in powdery mildew. That said, don’t be too harsh on a seed bank if a couple of their seeds don’t work from time to time when they’re generally reliable.

Final Thoughts on Good and Bad Cannabis Seeds

Telling good and bad cannabis seeds apart is not an exact science. Sadly, you don’t know what’s inside the seed beyond its appearance, so you won’t know what the plant is truly like until you start growing it.

Cultivating marijuana is a bit of a learning curve, so don’t worry if you mess up your crop from time to time. It will only get easier with time.

Hopefully, you can now tell apart some seeds, at least, giving you more opportunities to create a successful grow.

EDITOR’S CHOICE – Homegrown CannabisCo

Homegrown CannabisCo are the masters when it comes to seeds. Offering a massive variety of cannabis seeds that are well categorized, not only does this company create a resource for superb quality options including feminized seeds, it also provides extensive growing information for those looking for some support along their journey.

What Do Cannabis Seeds Look Like?

If you wonder what do cannabis seeds look like, you might not be alone. Many people wonder the same. Cannabis seeds may be as big as 2mm or as small as .5mm but cannabis seeds will always be whitish-brown and have small black spots on them. Although some strains may look different, you cannot actually tell the genetics or sex of the plant by just looking at the cannabis seeds, regardless of the claims people make.

What do cannabis seeds look like can’t define any other characteristics of the strain!

If you are wondering whether the size of the cannabis seeds makes a difference, they actually don’t. You will get the same result from big or small cannabis seeds and they will grow to become massive plants even if they came from smaller-than-usual cannabis seeds. Remember that what cannabis seeds look like will not define the plant that you grow or ultimately the cannabis you smoke.

You might find our FAQ submission Where Buy Marijuana Seeds? useful

Size, shape and colour: three cannabis seed characteristics that can be deceiving

This article has been conceived to answer all the key questions that we often get asked by clients and growers regarding the physical characteristics of our main product: premium-quality cannabis seeds.

Our 15 years in the business have provided us with a great command as well as a wide perspective of this subject, so it is an honour for us to be able to share our knowledge with all of you in the cannabis community.

The size of cannabis seeds

As most of the cannabis varieties that are currently on the market are polyhybrids, the size of the seeds can vary depending on their genetic line.

Some customers, for instance, contact us to tell us that they have bought Critical + seeds and they believe they look too small. But this is a normal feature of this strain: we’ve seen millions of Critical + seeds and we can confirm that they are naturally smaller than others. It is therefore incorrect to think that this is a sign of poor quality.

If, on the contrary, the seeds seem too big, this may be caused by a lack of macronutrients during the plant’s growth cycle. As any grower with certain experience will know, calcium deficiencies are corrected by adding calcium and magnesium, a combination that helps reestablish the perfect nutritional balance of plants.

So in this case, an increase in size could be a direct indicator of this addition of calcium and magnesium, which is carried out in order to alleviate that macronutrient deficiency during growth. This has no impact on the plant’s potential for germination, growth, flowering, or yield, nor on the development of the organoleptic properties of the buds (aroma, flavour and effect).

So we can openly say that this difference is simply visual. If we take the example of a Moby Dick seed, its dimensions will most likely be bigger than those of Critical +, although you can also find slight variations between seeds from the same strain. Don’t forget that, as with all living beings, cannabis seeds are also biologically different amongst themselves.

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The shape of cannabis seeds

Cannabis seeds can also show slight changes at morphological level. It’s perfectly normal to find minor differences in the oval shape of seeds from the same batch.

In some cases their shape is more linear; whereas in others one of the extremities can be rounded whilst the other is more pointy. But this is no reason for concern: as with size, these slight differences in the outline of the seeds are purely visual and have nothing to do with quality.

Related post

The most common mistakes when germinating cannabis seeds

The colour of cannabis seeds

Although it is true that ripe cannabis seeds tend to have a dark shell that can go from brown to black, with lines that look like tiger stripes, this cannot be regarded as a quality indicator by itself.

Yet again, this is a misleading physical attribute that does not guarantee the germination potential or overall characteristics of a seed. A high-quality strain can also be light or dark grey in colour.

Let’s take the example of Critical + again, one of our permanent bestsellers that has had a resounding success across the world thanks to its outstanding scent, flavour, effect, and yielding capacity.

Critical + is a clear example that colour, contrary to what many growers believe, is not necessarily a quality indicator: these undeniably high-quality seeds exhibit a very light grey, almost whitish grey, to a medium grey colour.

However, a greenish colour is a clear sign of immaturity, which means that the seed hasn’t developed fully or it hasn’t received all the necessary resources to reach full maturity. In this particular case, if you purchase seeds with this colour you need to contact your supplier immediately and try to have them replaced.

If this happens to you with one of our seeds, don’t hesitate to contact us directly. Send us a couple of pictures so we can check them out, and our customer service team will replace them as soon as possible.

Another aspect that can be misleading is the fact that a ripe, freshly-harvested cannabis seed has a brighter and darker colour than after it’s been packaged for 1 to 2 months.

This could be compared to a newborn whose physical appearance quickly evolves during their first few days of life in order to adapt to the completely new outside environment.

The same thing happens with cannabis seeds: the packaging and the different stages before they’re commercialised can entail lighting and humidity changes, as well as a bit of oxidation, which may slightly affect the colour of the shell but definitely has no impact on the final product. Once again, this is simply a visual effect.

We hope that this post has provided you with some useful information about the physical characteristics of your cannabis seeds to help you interpret them more objectively before starting their germination and cultivation.

Author

Brian Worms After completing my studies in International Trade and Marketing in France, I’m more interested in the world of communication today. Blogger, grower and real cannabis toker for more than 20 years, always looking into the rarest and finest cannabis genetics. My passion for cannabis is so deep that it’s become something of a lifestyle now… My work is like a dream come true.

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