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Are Seeds From Cannabis Clones Always Female?

You’re sketching out a beautiful cannabis plant family tree, but you want to be absolutely sure that your grand plan will work properly. After all, you don’t want to waste your valuable time and effort.

Cannabis plant genetics and reproduction can get confusing sometimes. Hopefully, this article will clear things up for you, so you can grow and pollinate with complete confidence.

First, we learn about basic cannabis plant anatomy and seeds. Then, you’ll learn how to reverse pollinate. And lastly, we’ll show you how to tell if your female is successfully pollinated along with some common cannabis plant deficiencies.

Short Answer

The short answer to whether or not males can be produced from female clones is yes, as long as those clones are pollinated by regular male plant pollen. The result will be approximately 50% male and 50% female, and some will be intersex (hermaphrodites).

However, if the female clones are pollinated by female reversed pollen, they will produce only female seeds.

Cannabis Plant Anatomy

Then check out this image from Weed Seeds Express to learn the difference between male, female, and hermaphrodite cannabis plant anatomy. Both males and hermaphrodites have pollen sacs, needed for breeding, at the nodal areas.

As you might already know, it’s the female cannabis plants that’ll give you those dank, cannabinoid-rich buds. Males produce less yield and less potent buds.

Female cannabis plants produce the sticky and cannabinoid-rich bud that most growers are looking for. In contrast, males produce pollen sacs necessary for breeding. However, this reduces the yield of female plants they breed with.

Take a look at this great explanation from Zambeza Seeds to study basic cannabis plant anatomy and get familiar with it before you get growing.

General Seed Information

Non-cloned (natural) cannabis plants produce seeds that will be 50/50 male and female. Some will be intersex (hermaphrodite).

Self-pollinated female plants or ones that have been pollinated by other female plants will give you 99% female seeds (and some intersex).

But, female plants can sometimes grow male flowers around the end of their life, unless you complete the pollen reversal process we talked about.

Another way to get female seeds is to pollinate female to female using “nanners” from stressed female plants. These are male flowers on female plants, and they look like little bananas.

Male Seeds From Female Clones

To get 50/50 male and female seeds from female clones, remember to pollinate them using regular male pollen.

What Is Reverse Pollination?

Reversing the sex of a female cannabis plant is a rather simple thing to do. The only real challenging part is collecting enough pollen at the right time. Below is an outline of the procedure so you can make your own feminized seeds.


First, buy some reversal spray from a cannabis growing supply store.

Take the plants you plan to pollinate and separate them from the ones you plan to reverse. Multi-topped plants tend to work better than single top plants in this case. Before you begin, pinch those tops.

If you are a commercial seed producer, to get the most seeds, you should have about a 1:4 ratio of reversed plant to seed mothers. For example, if you have 12, you’ll want to reverse 3 of those.

Spray Schedule

1) Choose your reversal plants about 21 days prior to flowering your seed mothers. This way, you’ll get maximum pollen for when they’re in their reproductive prime (between 14 and 25 days).

2) Start your spraying process on the day you change your reversal plants to flower. It’s best to do this right after lights-out or right after dusk (for outdoor). Go ahead and spray and adequate coating to nodes, branches, and tops. Do this every 3 days until the very first male pollen sacs start to open (day 20-30).

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3) Between days 14 and 25, you’ll begin the flowering phase for your female seed mother plants.

4) As soon as your female plants have some stigmas (but before the calixes begin to swell), they’re ready for pollination. Unite them with the reversed female plants at this time.


Reversed female plants don’t make as much pollen as naturally male plants, so do the following things to ensure proper pollination:

Use fans to provide airflow.

Shake reversed plants (in front of the fan) every day. To minimize mold and maximize airborne pollen by keeping the humidity low. If you notice that certain reversed plants are producing more pollen, rotate them around the grow area, if possible.

Be patient, because this pollination process is much slower than breeding with natural males. Successful pollination should occur within a few days after uniting the plants.

It’s not a good idea to reverse one branch of a plant and try to pollinate other branches of the same plant. The timing of the pollination and stigma formation will be off.

Signs Your Female Plant Is Pollinated

An early sign is that her bracts will be larger. When they’re not pollinated, they’re small and serve as protection for her reproductive parts. Remember, do not confuse bracts and calyxes.

To test whether they are pollinated, open a bract with tweezers. If there’s a seed inside the bract, it’s successfully pollinated. Another sign is that the pistil hairs become darker and shrivel.

Cannabis Plant Deficiencies

If you’re an experienced grower, you’re familiar with you’re ladies’ needs. You keep them in a suitable temperature/humidity range, with the right amount of light. You use the perfect climate-controlled box or tent, allow for adequate drainage, and provide them with a balanced diet. You also keep an eye on the pH of the growing medium.

But sometimes they present a mystery. So, what could possibly be wrong? Remember, nobody is perfect. Do your best to “listen” to what your plant is trying to tell you. Here are some possible causes of light green leaves:

Nitrogen Deficiency

Nitrogen is a vital nutrient for your plants. It’s a major component of chlorophyll. If your plants are in the vegetative phase. Are the leaves are turning light green or yellow like a wave of color moving up the plants. This is a sign of possible Nitrogen deficiency.

If the leaves are turning light green or yellow towards the end of their flowering phase, it’s simply taking Nitrogen from its leaves and feeding it to its flowers. This is a natural and healthy process.

Phosphorous Deficiency

Your ladies need Phosphorous to create Sulpher. Reasons include using it for essential proteins and enzymes, respiration, synthesis, and breakdown of fatty acids. They also need sulfur to synthesize (make) oils and terpenes.

By turning their leaves light green (and then yellow), your cannabis plants could be asking for Phosphorous so it can make Sulpher. Deficiencies cause a high pH at the root zone. Check the pH of your grown medium.

Other reasons include excess Boron, Iron deficiency, or even too much light. Investigate further and your ladies will be happy in no time.

Varying Phenotypes

If you have many cannabis plants of the same “strain”. One of your plants is a lighter green color than the others, it may be a variation in phenotype. This is nothing to worry about.

First-time growers sometimes panic if there is any change or variation in color. But you’ll learn that cannabis plants give you a gradual warning. This allows you enough time to investigate and fix the issue before anything serious happens. They have tough genetics.

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Wrapping Up

Whether or not you want male seeds from your female clones, you now have the knowledge to choose. Congratulations. You can now take control of your cannabis plant family tree. Your progeny will make you proud. Enjoy the process and stay fascinated.

If you do choose to reverse pollinate, remember that the timing of some of the steps will be the most challenging. Focus on this as well as proper identification of your clones and seedlings. We know you’ve got this. Good luck and have fun!

Grobo Can Help

Grobo is an automated grow box. We use deep water culture, a hydroponic technique to grow the plants. You simply add your plant, pick from the grow recipes in our app (we have hundreds of strains!), then the system does the rest.

Important: Grobo reduces the smell of your cannabis plant, but doesn’t eliminate it fully. You can grow 2-3oz every 3-4 months, from seed or clones. We have tons of educational videos on our YouTube channel. Although we focus on growing cannabis, we can help you grow other plants as well.

My buds have lots of seeds, is this a male or female plant?

Question: I have a healthy plant, the buds have alot of seeds in them. I'm almost certain it's a male plant. My question is, If this plant is a 'Male' are the seeds only male as well? Do they produce male and female seeds??

Answer: Only female (or hermaphrodite) plants make seeds, so you have a girl! However, if it's making seeds, its already been pollinated so it's not usable. That being said, it'll make both male and female seeds. Hope that helps! Good luck and happy growing!

Question: What about a cutting from a female with seeds, would its cutting/clone be seeded as welll?

How to Know If Your Marijuana Plant Is Male or Female

The dream of almost every cannabis grower is to have a luscious garden full of flowering female plants. Unfortunately, this isn’t always the case. There are bound to be some male plants in a batch of regular seeds, but there are environmental manipulations you can make to increase the likelihood of female plants in your garden. Keep reading to find out exactly how.

Did you know that cannabis has one of the most complex systems for gender determination compared to other plants that individualise into male and female? The process by which a cannabis plant chooses whether it is going to be male or female is extremely complex, and scientists have been trying to explain it for a long time. Although we don’t know exactly how it is that the cannabis plant finally chooses whether it’s going to make pollen or flowers, we can observe some environmental factors which affect the final product.

Knowing when cannabis plants are most likely to select their gender and being able to identify it early helps prevent any unwanted pollination. With this knowledge, you are even able to manipulate the environment during the growth cycle of your marijuana plant to encourage more female plants in your garden. This article is a how to for any grower looking to better control the male invasion in their garden.

When and how to identify males and females

The most effective way to keep your marijuana garden a ladies only party is by being on top of early gender detection. The longer male plants live in your garden and continue producing pollen sacks, the more likely you are going to experience pollination of the female plants. This means you end up with seeds in your garden. If you’re wanting to breed marijuana, then seeds might not be such a bad thing. But if you’re trying to harvest a very juicy crop, then early detection is the key.

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During the vegetation stage of growth, the plant is mainly concerned with getting taller, and isn’t particularly concerned with gender selection. However, there is a small bracket of time between vegetation and flowering called pre-flowering. It is in this time that a grower can identify the gender of their plant. The time will vary from plant to plant, and that’s why it is important to keep an eye on your cannabis plants. Very close observation is just about the only way to know when your plants are choosing which gender they are going to be. You might be able to sex your marijuana plants by observing their growth patterns, too. Males tend to be taller with long internodes. Females, on the other hand, tend to be bushier and have more leaves.

When your plants are in the pre flowering stage of growth, very small flower like bulges begin to appear at the branch junctions. On male plants, small pollen sacs will appear at the branch junction and are usually visible to the naked eye. Of course, a magnifying glass helps. On female plants, the flowers generally begin to appear slightly higher on the plant, about four or five branches from the base. They appear as pistils, or very small white hairs.

If you are trying to avoid pollination, it is important to remove your male plants from the garden as soon as you have identified that they are male. This will keep all the ladies happy and producing luscious buds!

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How to increase your female to male ratio

One really easy way to increase your female to male ratio is to purchase feminized seeds. However, even those who use feminized seeds know that in a stressful environment, some plants can grow to be male. For those growers who still prefer to purchase regular cannabis seeds, there are environmental factors that can encourage their seeds to turn into female plants.

The basic point with increasing the ratio of female plants is to reduce all stress from the plants’ environment. It is common for more plants to grow up to be males in a grow operation when they have been exposed to a lot of environmental stresses. The duration of time for which you need to really manage the environment to optimize results is in the 3 -4 th week of vegetation. This should be around the time where the seedling has three pairs of real leaves. This is said to be the most crucial time in a marijuana’s gender selection process. Any work that is done before this or after this could have no effect on the final ratio you achieve, because this is the most important time in the plant’s gender selection.

1. Get more female plants using… Nitrogen and potassium

Changing the level of these two nutrients in the soil can create an environment that is more conducive to female marijuana plants. Raising the levels of nitrogen in the soil is proven to encourage more female plants, and the same is achieved by lowering the levels of potassium. You can alternate between raising the nitrogen levels and lowering the potassium levels during the vegetation cycle of your plant. For example, a week or two with either adjustment. Remember not to go changing the environment too drastically, because a stressed plant is less likely to be a flowering female plant!