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Cannabis Forms and Types

G.Leave

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Cannabis: Forms and Types (Beginner-Advanced)
These days there are a lot of different types of cannabis plants available...between standard photoperiod strains, light sensitive photoperiod strains, fast version photoperiod, semi-autos, and standard autoflowering plants, whew! As well as the 3 standard types of cannabis, indica, sativa, and ruderalis, also a mix of the three which are classified as hybrids. What does this all mean?

Lets first delve into the 3 main types of Cannabis. All photoperiod and autoflowers are either Indica, Sativa, Ruderalis(autoflower), or a combination of any of the 3 in a hybrid. The 3 types have very different characteristics.

Indica - These are the base strains for heavy narcotic stones. These strains often relax your entire body, while they have a psychological effect , they are primarily a body oriented stone. Rarely, but sometimes, you will come across a pure indica that has uplifting energizing qualities, but more often Indica's are better suited to folks that are looking for a good nighttime toke to relax and watch a movie. For medical users, Indicas often have the best pain suppressing qualities. When you harvest, can also have quite the impact on the type of effect any type of bud will give you. A pure indica taken early when the trichomes are mostly cloudy but some clear, can often have a very different effect than the same plant harvested with 80% cloudy and 20% amber trichomes. The same can be said for all plants really...effect will often greatly vary depending on harvest time.

Sativa - These are strains that are generally associated with energizing and sometimes psychedelic up high buzzes, as well as creativity inducing strains. There is a lot of variance in the type of buzz in many sativa strains, so plenty of experimenting might be needed to find the perfect uphigh. Some people find sativa strains to be "racy", which to me means you feel almost jittery, and thoughts are often clouded and though processes can be confusing, which can lead to paranoia. Fortunately, for me, this is a rarity, but I have definitely found these racy effects in certain plants/strains. From a medical perspective, there is quite a bit of medical benefit in Sativa strains. I find for myself that a nice friendly up high like Dutch Passions Think Fast photoperiod or their Brooklyn Sunrise autoflower are excellent for relieving social pressure(anxiety), as well as depression. I find both of those strains to be very happy, fun, energizing, soaring buzzes than can make you feel like you are on top of the world.

Ruderalis - This type of cannabis is mainly used for the autoflowering trait. This type of cannabis generally originates from Central and Easter Europe, as well as Russia, and also Canada. I assume professional breeders would definitely select ruderalis plants for other features as well like size, branching structure, smell, and unique color. Since THC is generally extremely low on pure ruderalis plants, breeders try to select the traits they want, and breed in the autoflower genetic and other desired traits from the ruderalis, while retaining the high potency and other traits from the photoperiod.

Hybrids - This is where it really gets interesting. Hybrids(what most folks grow these days), and a mix of indica, sativa and also sometime ruderalis(usually the base of just autoflower, but often ruderalis genetics are working their way into photoperiod strains as well. The effect can take after either of the parent plants. One of the big reasons to grow hybrids is something called "Hybrid Vigor". When you take an indica and a sativa and breed them together, some of the offspring will exceed the parent plants in growth rates. Breeding can be a very complicated process, especially the intense breeding done by true professionals. Their dedication to getting "Joe Grower" so many fantastic strains to grow, definitely deserves our highest respect and gratitude. Some hybrids lean heavily toward Sativa, while some lean heavily over to the Indica side, and some have a nice balanced indica/sativa ratio both in effect, and in growth and flower type. This often results a balanced high, which will contain buzz effect characteristics from both sativa and indica.

Different Forms of Cannabis
Autoflower - True autoflowering plants will start to preflower based on their age and maturity. An outdoor natural increasing light regime will have no effect. Usually the preflower begins between 14-21 days, though some true autos can veg as long as 40 days before showing preflower. For many growers plants often take 2-3 weeks longer in outdoor conditions than they do indoors in a climate controlled setting. Several factors can influence the duration of the plants life cycle. Two factors I have noticed as a consistent trend to slow the life cycle are cold and limited light.

What does this mean for an Outdoor Grow?
Since you have an idea of expected finish times, you can really plan a strategy for an outdoor grow with a true autoflowering plant. Knowing an expected harvest date, will enable you to choose the middle/end of flower cycle to miss general weather trends like high humidity or the rainy season. Since a naturally increasing light regime(up until June the 21st) would halt flowering in all other forms of cannabis, pure autoflowers are the ultimate choice for those wanting to harvest plants in july(or possibly even earlier!). I personally like to time my outdoor photos so the prime of their bud production(week 4-8) is very close to the longest day of the season which will maximize production. Of course, this is more effective for those further away from the equator, where the mid summer days are much longer. The closer you are to the equator, the shorter the daylight hours will be, and this will minimize the impact of timing your longer daylight hours to the flowering period where they can make the most of maximum sunlight. True autoflowering plants are pretty much the only type of cannabis that can be grown in the far extreme northern latitudes, due to the long daylight hours overlapping into very cold weather. Other types of cannabis plants simply trigger into flower too late to beat the cold.

What does this mean for an indoor grow?
Since autoflowers will flower no matter how much darkness they get, it allows the indoor grower to give autos longer periods of light during the flowering phase than would be possible for flowering photoperiods, which maximizes bud production and overall plant stretch throughout preflower. If you are looking for maximum stretch, then you should ideally have some kind of darkness period. Plants grown with a darkness period seem to stretch more than plants grown in 24 hours of light. Personally, I prefer minimal stretch and like to keep plants in strong light that stacks nodes close.

Super-auto aka light sensitive photoperiod- Photoperiod plants crossed with autos that start to flower as soon as the natural light regime begins to drop. Many often begin to preflower in any light less than 18 hours as soon as the light regime is declining.

What does this mean for an outdoor grower?
These types of strains will have a huge impact for semi-extreme northern growers. Plants beginning preflower in june the 22nd will mostly be finished by the third week in august(strains with a 7-8 week flower period). This will allow the growers in the more northern latitudes to grow photoeriod strains and avoid the often cold or wet months of September and October. Quite a benefit indeed. I haven't seen many light sensitive photoperiod strains coming from breeders I trust yet, but when the time comes I will be adding some to my arsenal of plants to grow for sure.

What does this mean for an indoor grower?
**This is all theory, as I haven't grown any of this style of cannabis plant personally. How would this be a benefit to the indoor grower? Well, I for one would be VERY curious to see how these types of plants would do on a 24 hour lights on schedule for 6 weeks and then decline the lights on duration to 16 hours for flowering and run at 16 hours. I would assume there would be increased production from the more hours of available light than a standard photoperiod....would love to hear thoughts and opinions on this.

Fast Versions - Photoperiod strains bred to decrease the flower duration, resulting in a quicker, but slightly less productive flower stage. Created by using the pollen from an auto on photoperiod strains. The auto gene is recessive, meaning all plants will be photoperiod in nature, but can have the vigorous growth and rapid flower production from the auto genetics.

What does this mean for an outdoor grower?
This is another big breakthrough for growers in northern latitudes that often deal with less than ideal climates. This is another photoperiod breakthrough that will open up a whole bunch of new choices for semi-northern growers. Those in the extreme north (where the daylight hours and the very cold climate autumns overlap), will likely find little advantage to Fast Version plants. Here we often see snow by October the 15th, so strain choice is critical to success, and Fast versions have opened up many new possible strains from Sweet Seeds and Delicious seeds. For growers close to the equator this type of cannabis might actually be a disadvantage, as the short daylight hours coupled with a shorter flower duration will very likely mean a reduced harvest.

What does this mean for an indoor grower?
What a great question!! I would love to hear some input on this....all theory again of course. Would the quick turn over on Fast versions versus the decreased flower duration for the more rapid flower cycle work out evenly in regards to yield? I have no idea...would love to hear from F1 Fast indoor growers on this.

Photoperiod - Photoperiod plants start to flower based on the amount of daily daylight versus darkness hours. Most early outdoor strains start to flower at 15 to 15.5 hours of daylight, but some of the tropical sativas won't trigger into flower until much closer to 13. For northern latitude growers this is essential in strain choice.

What does this mean for an outdoor grower?
It means a huge amount, especially for semi-northern growers!! There is something I call the flower trigger. This is the amount of daylight hours versus the number of hours of darkness that a plant can take before it "triggers" into preflower. This single variable can have the greatest impact of all for a northern climate outdoor grower. If your chosen plant/strain does not start to flower until well into September and you know the weather is going to turn cold and rainy by early October, then I hate to say it but you have major problems, and all you will be able to do if hope for a limited premature harvest, and choose a more suited strain next year!!

What does this mean for an indoor grower?
This is the traditional type of plant that most old school growers are familiar with growing indoors. Its nice having control when you will force your plant to flower, and sometimes you will have a plan to start flowering within a certain time frame, but you may change your mind on the proper time to trigger flower based on plant health or size. Having the advantage to simply keep plants that may be struggling with health in their vegetative state until you are able to correct the issue, is a huge benefit over autoflowering plants which are set on a predetermined life cycle (determined by their genetics and also factors from climate).

"Not for a Free Weed country or continent, but for a Free Weed World, Unite and Grow, for a Better, Kinder Planet"
912GreenSkell
 
Last edited:

G.Leave

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I have no idea where this article should go on the site, so I am just going to leave it here, and when a mod.or admin determines a good spot for it, move it wherever it is best suited...
 

Johnny Quest

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Glueberry.,,,,,,,,IceBreaker,,,,,,,,,SweetTooth
Cannabis: Forms and Types (Beginner-Advanced)
These days there are a lot of different types of cannabis plants available...between standard photoperiod strains, light sensitive photoperiod strains, fast version photoperiod, semi-autos, and standard autoflowering plants, whew! As well as the 3 standard types of cannabis, indica, sativa, and ruderalis, also a mix of the three which are classified as hybrids. What does this all mean?

Lets first delve into the 3 main types of Cannabis. All photoperiod and autoflowers are either Indica, Sativa, Ruderalis(autoflower), or a combination of any of the 3 in a hybrid. The 3 types have very different characteristics.

Indica - These are the base strains for heavy narcotic stones. These strains often relax your entire body, while they have a psychological effect , they are primarily a body oriented stone. Rarely, but sometimes, you will come across a pure indica that has uplifting energizing qualities, but more often Indica's are better suited to folks that are looking for a good nighttime toke to relax and watch a movie. For medical users, Indicas often have the best pain suppressing qualities. When you harvest, can also have quite the impact on the type of effect any type of bud will give you. A pure indica taken early when the trichomes are mostly cloudy but some clear, can often have a very different effect than the same plant harvested with 80% cloudy and 20% amber trichomes. The same can be said for all plants really...effect will often greatly vary depending on harvest time.

Sativa - These are strains that are generally associated with energizing and sometimes psychedelic up high buzzes, as well as creativity inducing strains. There is a lot of variance in the type of buzz in many sativa strains, so plenty of experimenting might be needed to find the perfect uphigh. Some people find sativa strains to be "racy", which to me means you feel almost jittery, and thoughts are often clouded and though processes can be confusing, which can lead to paranoia. Fortunately, for me, this is a rarity, but I have definitely found these racy effects in certain plants/strains. From a medical perspective, there is quite a bit of medical benefit in Sativa strains. I find for myself that a nice friendly up high like Dutch Passions Think Fast photoperiod or their Brooklyn Sunrise autoflower are excellent for relieving social pressure(anxiety), as well as depression. I find both of those strains to be very happy, fun, energizing, soaring buzzes than can make you feel like you are on top of the world.

Ruderalis - This type of cannabis is mainly used for the autoflowering trait. This type of cannabis generally originates from Central and Easter Europe, as well as Russia, and also Canada. I assume professional breeders would definitely select ruderalis plants for other features as well like size, branching structure, smell, and unique color. Since THC is generally extremely low on pure ruderalis plants, breeders try to select the traits they want, and breed in the autoflower genetic and other desired traits from the ruderalis, while retaining the high potency and other traits from the photoperiod.

Hybrids - This is where it really gets interesting. Hybrids(what most folks grow these days), and a mix of indica, sativa and also sometime ruderalis(usually the base of just autoflower, but often ruderalis genetics are working their way into photoperiod strains as well. The effect can take after either of the parent plants. One of the big reasons to grow hybrids is something called "Hybrid Vigor". When you take an indica and a sativa and breed them together, some of the offspring will exceed the parent plants in growth rates. Breeding can be a very complicated process, especially the intense breeding done by true professionals. Their dedication to getting "Joe Grower" so many fantastic strains to grow, definitely deserves our highest respect and gratitude. Some hybrids lean heavily toward Sativa, while some lean heavily over to the Indica side, and some have a nice balanced indica/sativa ratio both in effect, and in growth and flower type. This often results a balanced high, which will contain buzz effect characteristics from both sativa and indica.

Different Forms of Cannabis
Autoflower - True autoflowering plants will start to preflower based on their age and maturity. An outdoor natural increasing light regime will have no effect. Usually the preflower begins between 14-21 days, though some true autos can veg as long as 40 days before showing preflower. For many growers plants often take 2-3 weeks longer in outdoor conditions than they do indoors in a climate controlled setting. Several factors can influence the duration of the plants life cycle. Two factors I have noticed as a consistent trend to slow the life cycle are cold and limited light.

What does this mean for an Outdoor Grow?
Since you have an idea of expected finish times, you can really plan a strategy for an outdoor grow with a true autoflowering plant. Knowing an expected harvest date, will enable you to choose the middle/end of flower cycle to miss general weather trends like high humidity or the rainy season. Since a naturally increasing light regime(up until June the 21st) would halt flowering in all other forms of cannabis, pure autoflowers are the ultimate choice for those wanting to harvest plants in july(or possibly even earlier!). I personally like to time my outdoor photos so the prime of their bud production(week 4-8) is very close to the longest day of the season which will maximize production. Of course, this is more effective for those further away from the equator, where the mid summer days are much longer. The closer you are to the equator, the shorter the daylight hours will be, and this will minimize the impact of timing your longer daylight hours to the flowering period where they can make the most of maximum sunlight. True autoflowering plants are pretty much the only type of cannabis that can be grown in the far extreme northern latitudes, due to the long daylight hours overlapping into very cold weather. Other types of cannabis plants simply trigger into flower too late to beat the cold.

What does this mean for an indoor grow?
Since autoflowers will flower no matter how much darkness they get, it allows the indoor grower to give autos longer periods of light during the flowering phase than would be possible for flowering photoperiods, which maximizes bud production and overall plant stretch throughout preflower. If you are looking for maximum stretch, then you should ideally have some kind of darkness period. Plants grown with a darkness period seem to stretch more than plants grown in 24 hours of light. Personally, I prefer minimal stretch and like to keep plants in strong light that stacks nodes close.

Super-auto aka light sensitive photoperiod- Photoperiod plants crossed with autos that start to flower as soon as the natural light regime begins to drop. Many often begin to preflower in any light less than 18 hours as soon as the light regime is declining.

What does this mean for an outdoor grower?
These types of strains will have a huge impact for semi-extreme northern growers. Plants beginning preflower in june the 22nd will mostly be finished by the third week in august(strains with a 7-8 week flower period). This will allow the growers in the more northern latitudes to grow photoeriod strains and avoid the often cold or wet months of September and October. Quite a benefit indeed. I haven't seen many light sensitive photoperiod strains coming from breeders I trust yet, but when the time comes I will be adding some to my arsenal of plants to grow for sure.

What does this mean for an indoor grower?
**This is all theory, as I haven't grown any of this style of cannabis plant personally. How would this be a benefit to the indoor grower? Well, I for one would be VERY curious to see how these types of plants would do on a 24 hour lights on schedule for 6 weeks and then decline the lights on duration to 16 hours for flowering and run at 16 hours. I would assume there would be increased production from the more hours of available light than a standard photoperiod....would love to hear thoughts and opinions on this.

Fast Versions - Photoperiod strains bred to decrease the flower duration, resulting in a quicker, but slightly less productive flower stage. Created by using the pollen from an auto on photoperiod strains. The auto gene is recessive, meaning all plants will be photoperiod in nature, but can have the vigorous growth and rapid flower production from the auto genetics.

What does this mean for an outdoor grower?
This is another big breakthrough for growers in northern latitudes that often deal with less than ideal climates. This is another photoperiod breakthrough that will open up a whole bunch of new choices for semi-northern growers. Those in the extreme north (where the daylight hours and the very cold climate autumns overlap), will likely find little advantage to Fast Version plants. Here we often see snow by October the 15th, so strain choice is critical to success, and Fast versions have opened up many new possible strains from Sweet Seeds and Delicious seeds. For growers close to the equator this type of cannabis might actually be a disadvantage, as the short daylight hours coupled with a shorter flower duration will very likely mean a reduced harvest.

What does this mean for an indoor grower?
What a great question!! I would love to hear some input on this....all theory again of course. Would the quick turn over on Fast versions versus the decreased flower duration for the more rapid flower cycle work out evenly in regards to yield? I have no idea...would love to hear from F1 Fast indoor growers on this.

Photoperiod - Photoperiod plants start to flower based on the amount of daily daylight versus darkness hours. Most early outdoor strains start to flower at 15 to 15.5 hours of daylight, but some of the tropical sativas won't trigger into flower until much closer to 13. For northern latitude growers this is essential in strain choice.

What does this mean for an outdoor grower?
It means a huge amount, especially for semi-northern growers!! There is something I call the flower trigger. This is the amount of daylight hours versus the number of hours of darkness that a plant can take before it "triggers" into preflower. This single variable can have the greatest impact of all for a northern climate outdoor grower. If your chosen plant/strain does not start to flower until well into September and you know the weather is going to turn cold and rainy by early October, then I hate to say it but you have major problems, and all you will be able to do if hope for a limited premature harvest, and choose a more suited strain next year!!

What does this mean for an indoor grower?
This is the traditional type of plant that most old school growers are familiar with growing indoors. Its nice having control when you will force your plant to flower, and sometimes you will have a plan to start flowering within a certain time frame, but you may change your mind on the proper time to trigger flower based on plant health or size. Having the advantage to simply keep plants that may be struggling with health in their vegetative state until you are able to correct the issue, is a huge benefit over autoflowering plants which are set on a predetermined life cycle (determined by their genetics and also factors from climate).

"Not for a Free Weed country or continent, but for a Free Weed World, Unite and Grow, for a Better, Kinder Planet"
912GreenSkell
912GreenSkell nice write up..have to ask can I link it to the AFN facebook page?
 
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