The term hermie is used to indicate any cannabis plant which displays both female and male organs. Hermaphroditism is a natural process that sometimes occurs accidentally, even after inspecting and scrutinising your weed plant thoroughly.
Such hermaphrodite plants are difficult to be identified, especially during their early stage. This poses the biggest question: how to identify a hermaphrodite plant. If you too are looking for answers, you have come to the right place. In this post, we have discussed thoroughly the signs that help us identify a hermie plant among existing cannabis plants. But, before diving into the details, we would first examine the causes of hermaphroditism.
What causes a marijuana Plant to hermie?
Several factors persuade cannabis plants to activate their defence mechanism, resulting in Hermaphroditism. We have listed such factors in detail below.
Needless to say, hermie plants tend to produce hermie offspring. There are specific cannabis strains that contain hermaphroditic traits, hence, more chances of transforming into a hermaphrodite while harvesting. You mustn’t prefer to grow such varieties for consumption. Thai Sativa is one such notorious variety of cannabis that is popular for its hermaphroditic traits.
If we look closely, we will realise that Hermaphroditism is a smart move. A hermaphrodite plant doesn’t have to be dependent on another plant. It can pollinate itself!
Marijuana plants don’t hermie under normal circumstances. They are extremely sensitive and when they experience external pressure and fear to die, they don’t wait for eternal pollination. Instead, they activate their defence mechanism, trying to protect themselves. We have discussed one such stress factor below which induces hermaphroditism.
Irregular Lightning Routines
This is one of the most important environmental factors that affect hermaphroditism. Cannabis plants that don’t receive light every day at the same time are forced to hermie. Sudden light leaks are extremely harmful.
There are some additional stress factors you must be careful about. Some of them are:
- The abrupt rise in temperature
- Plant problems like lack of nutrition, nutrient burn, pest infestations, unsuitable pH, light burn, etc.
- Purchases from an unknown nursery
What are the early signs of hermie plants?
Mostly a hermie plant is expected to show signs of hermaphroditism during its flowering period. However, the signs can be divided into three categories. Let’s go through them one by one.
Early signs of Hermaphroditism
These signs occur much before the flowering state. Hence, they are called early signs. These signs can easily be spotted and can help determine the sex of your weed plant.
You can find distinct hair growth on female cannabis plants right from the fourth or sixth week of germination. They are whitish and are called pistils. Female cannabis plants also grow calyxes. However, usually, people confuse these parts as male components.
That’s why people are advised to not rush. If they feel confused, they must take expert help. Otherwise, they might just uproot a fertile cannabis plant, which would have been great for consumption.
Unlike the female weed plants, the male ones grow circular bunches called pods, from their week of seed germination.
Scrutinise the calyx in the early stage of cannabis growth
By now you know, the calyx is an important part of a female weed plant. Different plants grow different types of calyxes but can be identified with the naked eye if you are experienced. If you notice frosty, pointy hair growth or pistils, know that they are calyxes. This is the point where cannabis seeds would grow upon pollination.
A male flower will look round instead of being pointed. Also, it wouldn’t have hairs surrounding it.
Late Flower Stage
As the weed plant starts to grow older, it will become difficult to identify the male parts because the buds will surround it. It becomes even more difficult if the male parts grow inside the buds.
During the flowering stage, bananas begin to appear on male cannabis plants. These Bananas will split open, pollinating other plants and resulting in the formation of seeds, which grows inside buds.
Detecting banana formation is important in this regard. If you are unable to detect them on time, they will pollinate your entire plant growth and make the crops full of seeds.
If you can spot a banana in your female cannabis plant, it’s a definite sign of hermaphroditism. To find that out, look for pistils or buds on your female plant. If you notice any kind of structure shaped like a banana, you need to take immediate steps. Although, people are usually late in finding this out and hence nothing can be done.
How to Avoid Hermie Formation
If you are willing to prevent hermie formation, you ought to take care of the factors that induce hermaphroditism in plants. Let’s go through this in a more detailed manner.
The first thing to do is visit the best marijuana seed banks and buy cannabis strains from reputed sellers. The second most important thing to do is ensure that your marijuana plant lives a stress-free life. Here’s how you can ensure that.
Avoid Irregular Lightning Routines
The light cycles must remain the same every day. Once your marijuana plant has started to develop, make sure the light and dark periods occur at the same time daily. Marijuana plants are especially sensitive to sleep.
Also, during the flowering stages, don’t change the light routine. If you are growing the plants indoors, prefer putting up a timer on them. Additionally, check that your outdoor plants aren’t exposed to street lights, flaring mobile torch lights, floodlights, etc. During your plant’s flowering period, it’s important to make sure it gets twelve hours of interrupted sleep.
Avoid Temperature Fluctuations
For the healthy growth of cannabis plants, temperature ranges of 18 to 30°C are ideal. Try to maintain this temperature range if you are to prevent hermaphroditism.
If the temperature rises too high, there’s a considerable chance of triggering hermaphroditism. If you are watering the plants, remember that ice-cold temperature isn’t suitable for marijuana plants. You might think that cold water on a hot summer day might provide relief to your cannabis plant. However, it’s not so.
If temperatures are warm, make sure the water is warm too. You must give your plant what it expects. Growers are also advised to reduce temperatures at night as compared to the daytime. You must take good care of your cannabis plant and remember not to leave it over a cool surface for a prolonged period.
Don’t Light Burn Your Plants
Though bright light is essential for the successful growth of your cannabis plants, you mustn’t exposé your plant to extremely bright lights. It can cause light burns, triggering the plant to activate its defence mechanism.
Don’t keep lights very close to your marijuana crops. Like we already mentioned, too much exposure to brightness might cause stress, resulting in hermaphroditism of cannabis plants. Now, different strains of marijuana can withstand the brightness of different levels. Talk to your seller about your plant and know the range of brightness that’s ideal for your plant.
Cannabis plants need to be handled very gently. They are extremely sensitive. Don’t prune or cut off the stems during their flowering stage. Don’t water excessively. Neither should you add excess fertilisers or pesticides.
Act Proactively to Prevent Plant Problems
Being a responsible marijuana grower, you have to be diligent and proactive. You have to look out for problems constantly and if they have any. Regular inspection of crops is extremely necessary. If any problem becomes a stress factor, it would be very hard to stop the plant from hermaphroditism. The problems you must look out for are:
- Lack of nutrients
- Feeding your plants excessively
- Loss of leaves due to pests
- Pest infestations
How to prevent buying cannabis with hermaphroditic traits?
Before you proceed to grow weed plants, you must know about the strains that are hermaphroditic. Avoid buying such strains. You can take the following steps to ensure that you buy good-quality cannabis plants that would provide you with top-quality yields.
Buy Seeds from a Trusted Grower or Nursery
Always visit a trustworthy seed bank that has been growing cannabis for a long time. It’s always advisable to prefer experienced and professional breeders.
Finding Quality Seeds
The success of every journey depends on how you commence it. Similarly, before you start to grow cannabis plants, you must get top-quality seeds for yourself! Make sure you abide by the laws and regulations for cannabis production.
Now that you have come to know quite a lot about hermaphroditic plants and how to prevent hermaphroditism, you must be wondering if you can save a hermie plant. This topic can cause major debates among cannabis breeders and there seems to be no final answer to it.
What should I do if my weed plant turns out to be a hermaphrodite?
The safest option is to uproot the plant to prevent the other cannabis plants from turning into a Hermie.
Can I smoke a hermie plant?
Yes, one can use a hermaphrodite plant for smoking purposes.
What is a hermie cannabis plant?
A hermie cannabis plant refers to a plant that develops both male and female organs. This type of cannabis plant should be removed from your crop immediately. Otherwise, they will start pollinating your other plants as well. Hermaphroditism is a natural process that occurs accidentally.
What leads to hermaphroditism in cannabis plants?
Various reasons could lead to this phenomenon. Some of the primary reasons include:
- Irregular lightning routines
- External stress
Can a hermie marijuana plant pollinate?
Yes, a hermie marijuana plant can pollinate your female marijuana plants. If you let this happen, then it will produce more hermie plants. This is why you are advised to remove all the hermie plants from your crops as soon as you detect them. Otherwise, it can ruin all your plants.
Can you avoid hermie cannabis plants?
There are a few things you can do to avoid hermie plants. This can be done by avoiding temperature fluctuations, and irregular lighting routines. You must also handle your cannabis plants with care and not subject them to external stress. Also, make sure that your plants don’t get light burned. If you notice any hermie plants, you must eliminate them immediately.
Some breeders advise people to mix a hermie plant with another species of cannabis to save it. Some don’t support this idea, saying that buds that the mixed seed plant would produce will also contain hermaphroditic traits. Hence, we advise people to uproot a hermaphrodite weed plant entirely, to present its spread and protect the remaining cannabis plants.
I’m an avid gardener and cannabis enthusiast. You can usually find me in my garden caring for my plants or at my computer crafting helpful blogs for my readers.
- 1 What causes a marijuana Plant to hermie?
- 2 What are the early signs of hermie plants?
- 3 How to Avoid Hermie Formation
- 4 How to prevent buying cannabis with hermaphroditic traits?
- 5 FAQs
- 6 Conclusion