There is always room for new strainsin the cannabis industry. When it comes to creating new strains of cannabis,the opportunities are endless. Selective breeding to create hybrid strains isan innovative way of producing weed strains with the exact flavor and potencyprofile you are looking for. In this article, we explore what weed strains areand the process cannabis breeders follow to create new strains.
What does a new strain of weed mean?
Cannabis strains refer to a specificvariety of cannabis. Each variety has its own set of characteristics, all withdifferent levels of potency, aroma, effects, and cannabinoid profiles. The nameof a strain reflects its characteristics. For example, Orange Tingz has a sweet taste with orangeundertones, whereas Sage N Sour has a sour flavor profile.
Whilst there are a variety of popularstrains already on the market, it is also possible to create new strains ofcannabis if you want to cultivate a strain with a specific cannabinoid profilethat cannot be found anywhere else.
Where do weed strains comefrom?
Weed strains come from the cannabis plant, which is part of the Cannabaceaefamily. The two main species of plants within the family are Cannabis Indicaand Cannabis Sativa. In order to create newstrains, elements of these two plants need to be bred together which creates anentirely new version of the plant.
Marijuana strains are created in asimilar way to dog breeds. Just as breeders bring male and female dogs togetherin the hopes that the best traits of each will manifest in the puppy, cannabiscultivators bring male plants and female plants together in a similar breedingprocess to create a new plant with desirable traits.
Is it possible to create anew weed strain?
Yes, creating a new strain of weed is possible. All you need to dois take two existing cannabis varieties and breed them together to create a newstrain. With so many different strains on themarket, it might seem as though nothing new can be produced, but that is notthe case.
Even new strains can be bred togetherto create an additional new variety, changing the inherent characteristics ofthis new plant. This can be done over and over again, so it will always bepossible to create new weed strains.
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What is a phenotype?
A phenotypeis the physical expression of the cannabis plant. As you might expect, thephenotype is largely dictated by the genotype, but also relies on the physicalenvironment it is surrounded by in order to allow the genetic information to beproperly expressed.
Although a plant might have specificgenes for certain characteristics, these characteristics will be brought out bythe environment the plant is in. The phenotype, therefore, refers tocharacteristics such as smell, color, and potency that are facilitated by theenvironment the plant is growing in. This means that there are plants thatshare the exact same genetic code, but ultimately end up with differentphenotypes because they grow in different environments.
What is a pheno-hunt?
Pheno-hunting is the process of findingthe perfect phenotypes. Since genetic information does not guaranteecharacteristics in weed strains, cannabis growers have to gothrough the process of pheno-hunting for breeding purposes to get the outcomethey are looking for. This can be an extremely long and arduous process inwhich growers have to continually alter the environment their plants grow in totest for different phenotypes.
How do you know if geneticsare stabilized?
Phenotypes are subject to change oftenso, how can you make sure that yourstrain is stable and not going to change? The only answer to this is tokeep testing your weed. This is one of the most tiresome aspects of cannabiscultivation because even when you have created the exact strain you want, youcannot be sure that it will always produce a plant with the samecharacteristics.
In order to be sure that your weed strain is stable and will continue tokeep creating identical strains, you need to extract a seed from the parentplant and grow it over and over again, making sure you get the same result eachtime.
How to makea new strain of weed
Creating new strains of weed isactually fairly easy, but it is extremely time-consuming. Below are the stepsinvolved in creating a new strain of weed.
H3: Choose the parent plant
The first step in any breeding projectis choosing the right parents. You should choose the parent strains dependingon the characteristics you want your new strain to possess. You need to notonly choose a strain that you like the characteristics of, but also one that ishealthy, which means strong, robust stems and a healthy root system. The aim isto find a late-blooming male. Otherwise, when you cross it with the femaleplant, its genes will be too strong and you will simply get a clone of yourmale parent.
H3: Collect the pollen
Once you are sure that you have chosenthe correct male plant, it is now time to harvest its pollen. Luckily, thisprocess is extremely simple, especially if you have let your male plants bloomfor longer. All you need to do is tip the plant upside down over a black pieceof paper and shake it to allow the pollen to fall off.
You want to contain this pollen, so besure that you don’t have any fans or AC systems running and that you don’t havewindows open. Once you’ve collected the pollen, immediately transfer it to acontainer to keep it safe.
H3: Fertilize the female plant
Now, the fertilization process begins.Similarly to choosing the male plant, you need to ensure that the female parentyou want to fertilize has all the desired characteristics you are looking for.Although a bit more fiddly than extracting the male pollen, fertilizing thefemale plant is just as easy.
Simply remove the flower you want tofertilize (you don’t want to risk mass fertilization), identify a couple ofrobust branches and apply the pollen you have collected to the branches with apaintbrush. It is a good idea to wait until the plants are three to five weeksinto their flowering period.
H3: Deactivate leftover pollen
The final step before harvesting whencreating a new strain of weed is to deactivate any leftover pollen.Deactivating the pollen is important so that you don’t cross-contaminate andcause additional pollination. To deactivate the pollen just spray the plantwith water.
H3: Harvest your seeds
Once all the steps above have beencompleted, you have to wait for the flowering period to develop. After aroundtwo to six weeks, your plant will contain fully grown seeds. You then need toharvest the seeds and give them an additional month before they can germinate.
What is the most popularweed strain right now?
The most popular weed strains vary between countries, and evenbetween provinces. Since it has become legalizedfor recreational use in Canada, the popularity of weed has exponentiallyincreased.
Here is a list of some of Canada's favorite strains:
● Blue Dream
● OG Kush
● Watermelon Zkittlez
● Grandaddy Purple
● Jean Guy
What are the top weed strains in Canada?
Shop for new weed strains
If you are bored of smoking the sameweed all the time, it might be time to start exploring some new strains. AtSeed and Stone, we stock a vast array of different weed strains, so there issomething for everyone.
If you are wary about trying somethingnew, visit one of our many in-store locations, where our expert budtenders willtalk you through everything you need to know about the different varieties.Alternatively, if you know what you like, you can get your weed deliveredstraight to your door with our online delivery service.
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