Are you curious about cannabis pollen? Female Cannabis plants are the gems and treasures that yield the buds that Cannabis growers and enthusiasts love. With this, some people get disappointed when they find out that they have been cultivating and growing a male plant. But, what we do not realize is that male plants are just as important as female plants, especially when it comes to sustainability in growing and producing cannabis pollen. Both varieties participate distinctly mainly in the pollination and reproduction process.
The male Cannabis plants are responsible for producing the pollen, just like all other male plant varieties, which is the key that allows germination with female plants to occur, and subsequently, produce Cannabis seeds. These Cannabis seeds are of great importance especially to experts and Cannabis breeders as they allow them to mix and cross the genetics of several varieties and strains of plants and produce new breeds or strains that possess the characteristics they desire to produce and distribute.
This fact is not only exclusive for breeders. Still, it can also be beneficial for people who have a particular taste in their Cannabis and wish to make a strain of their own, especially that the procedure to do this is laid.
Cannabis Pollen Defined
Pollen appears as a fine powder that is golden yellow produced by the male varieties of plants. This is true for all types of plants with male and female counterparts, including that of Cannabis.
Pollen is the particular component incorporated with the female buds for germination, or the production of seeds, to occur. Necessarily, germination will never happen without the other component so seeds will never be produced if one of the female and male variety is not present.
In a natural environment, pollen is transported from the male flowering plant to the female flowering plant through the blowing of the wind or insects. While in human-made environments such as grow-op facilities, pollens are manually collected from the male plants and applied to the female plants when they are starting to grow flowers.
Also, expert breeders manually collect pollen from male plants if they wish to produce a new breed or if they require Cannabis seeds. Pollens are just easy to collect and can even be stored for over a year.
Ways of Collecting Cannabis Pollen from Male Plants
Collecting pollen only requires a few steps, and many people find it very simple. You will know when a male plant already has sufficient pollen when you see golden yellow powder, the pollen grains, around its leaves or you can observe that its pollen sack is already filled.
Some few simple steps in collecting pollen are as follows:
- One of the simplest methods in harvesting pollen from a male Cannabis is by gently removing the pollen sac that appears to be full already. Have this pollen sac dried for about a week and store it in a resealable bag, for example, a zip lock bag, once it is completely dried. Afterward, shake the bag, and the sacs should split and crack and release the pollen on its own. It will be released to the bag, and then you can gently remove the remaining pieces of sacs and store the pollen grains in the resealable container.
- Another common way of collecting pollen grains that will not consume time for drying is by simply agitating the pollen sacs and putting the pollen grains in a bag, or a container, a resealable bag like a ziplock bag will do. The sacs should be bent and slightly inserted into the bag or the box, and then gently tapped to transfer the pollen from the sac to the container. Keep in mind to remove the pollen sacs that might fall off into the storage bag while harvesting the pollen grains.
Pollen is very easy to transport, even when you do not notice. If this happens, germination takes place, and your schedule of harvest gets disrupted. Therefore, it is essential to remember that one should not go near a female plant after having been in close contact with male flowering plants. Besides, male plants and female plants should not be placed close to each other.
Best Methods in Storing Cannabis Pollen
As individuals decide to venture with storing Cannabis pollen, it is essential to know and to keep in mind that moisture is the number one enemy of pollen grains, once pollen gets exposed to humidity they lose all their functionality and essentially become useless. Thus, pollen should be away from all risks of moisture at all times.
The best way to be able to preserve pollen is by situating it inside a new resealable bag and putting it inside a fridge for several days. However, if you wish to store it for a more extended period, the resealable bag should be placed inside the freezer, this method permits storage for around a year.
Another method that will allow Cannabis pollen storage is by mixing it with plain flour with a 1:3 ratio, one part pollen, and three parts flour before putting it in a container. This method aids in the absorption of moisture and makes pollination easier as it increases the volume of pollen collected, which can be utilized for the pollination.
Using silica gel packs, similar to the ones seen in medicine bottles and other storage containers, together with cannabis pollen, is also another effective way of keeping pollen free from moisture.
Lastly, double or triple bagging is also another effective method in preserving the functionality of pollen. This involves putting the bag containing pollen inside another bag and if you wish to do so, putting this bag inside another bag as well.
Recommended Procedure in Utilizing Cannabis Pollen
The cannabis pollen collected from the male plant becomes functional once it participates in germination, which occurs in the female plant. Therefore, to put the pollen grains into use, they have to reach the female plant.
Female Cannabis plants, when they are fit for pollination, will have their developing buds possess wispy white hairs which are naturally used to gather pollen from the male plants driven by the wind when in a wild environment. This phenomenon usually occurs within two to three weeks into the flowering stage of the female plant. This is also when expert growers and professional breeders generally prefer and recommend to apply the pollen from the male plant to the female plant.
The harvested pollen grains are applied onto the bud sites of the female plant using a brush. Bud sites are usually located in the region where the stem and the leaves of the plant meet. It is also a must to ensure that parts such as the pistil and the hairs in the female plant are well pollinated; they should be directly touched if needed.
Only the bud sites that we’re able to be in contact with pollen grains will allow germination to take place and produce Cannabis seeds. For this reason, one can opt to put pollen in other parts of the female plant as well or in the entirety of the female plant to be entirely sure.
Alternatively, more natural methods of pollination can also be done. This method is also very simple which only includes placing the female plant and the male plant in a similar room or within a very close distance with each other and shaking the male plant once or twice every day for two to three days. This will allow the male plant to release some of its pollen grains thus allowing the wind to naturally drive the pollen to the parts of the female plant.
Pollen grains are very easy to transport from one place to another; therefore, it will also be easy to reach the female plant. Because of this same reason, the male plants should be placed away from the female plant during periods when you do not wish for pollination to happen.
Detailed Procedure in Collecting Cannabis Pollen
Four weeks after pollination, one can already check the female Cannabis plant and look for Cannabis seeds that might be available for harvest. Seeds develop in the flowers of the female plant and can be observed in and around a pollinated bud. Pollinated buds do not look very similar to regular sinsemilla. Instead, they do not form large colas and have fewer trichomes. Mature seeds that are ready for harvest; on the other hand, usually look brown or tan and possess an incredibly hard shell that sometimes has light striping. You can check for the maturity of the seeds by trying to pick one from your pollinated bud and examining if it fits the description of mature seed.
If your Cannabis seeds do not look mature, do not harvest them yet and allow it to develop for a little longer as it is normal for seeds to mature up to six weeks. Also, it is normal for some Cannabis plants to develop mature seeds very late in their flowering cycle. During these kinds of situations, it is essential to keep your female Cannabis plants healthy and provide them with enough light and nutrients to ensure the proper development of the Cannabis seeds, as well.
Once you believe that the Cannabis seeds look mature and are available for harvest, you can start collecting the pollinated buds and digging deep to be able to collect all of the mature seeds. These seeds are all ready to use and can be germinated to start the process of growing new plants or developing new strains. They can also be stored in a cool, dry place for several years before being used.