Vinyl record cover weed seeds
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The Weeding EP – UV Printed White Vinyl
White 12″ vinyl with unique UV print on B-Side in jacket with double sided insert, limited and numbered 500 copies worldwide.
White 12″ vinyl with unique UV print on B-Side in jacket with double sided insert, limited and numbered 500 copies worldwide
‘The Weeding,’ the long out-of-print 2009 Mini-LP from the world’s dankest death-dealers CANNABIS CORPSE, sees its worldwide re-release via Season of Mist.
This cult recording of thick, groove-laden death set the stage for the world-class pummeling of the ensuing three full-length albums (‘From Wisdom To Baked,’ ‘Left Hand Pass’ and ‘Nug So Vile’).
Artwork by Andrei Bouzikov.
Side A: Shit of Pot Seeds/Vaporized
Side B: Skull Full of Bong Hits/Sickening Photosynthesis
Includes unlimited streaming of The Weeding EP via the free Bandcamp app, plus high-quality download in MP3, FLAC and more. . more
WHEN WEED WAS… WEED!
For forty-five years now, Michka has witnessed with her own eyes the evolution of the cannabis world. Here, she shares with us her unique insights into the major transformations that shape it today.
One of the things I liked right away about weed, marijuana, was that it was obviously a plant – raw plant material.
It was I think back in 1972, not too far from Vancouver, the weed was being imported from Mexico and it was just a shapeless mass from which we had to remove what was unsmokable. First, we had to take out the biggest twigs and then break up the rest. The best way to get rid of the seeds was to spread the crumbled up weed on a rigid album cover and tilt it slightly as to make the seeds roll off. Seeds were abundant, and naturally, that’s how cannabis was first grown in North America.
First crops, first sinsemillas
I myself germinated those Mexican seeds and planted them with love in the soil of western Canada where I lived back then. The plants grew lush and fast, their long, thin leaves dancing under the sun… until they took a fatal blow when frost came with the fall. We would smoke the tight bundles of green shoots that had formed at the ends of the branches (the tops) and use the rest to make brownies. The result was magical, and happy we were.
I clearly remember how surprised I was when, back in Europe, I held in my hands for the first time a cola of sinsemilla, well-shaped, resinous… and seedless! It was in the Netherlands in the early 90s, and that mysterious Nevil (whom I was meeting for the first time) was handing it to me, suggesting I should roll a joint. Abashed by that strange bud, I declined his offer, and let him roll it instead.
At that time, near Amsterdam, the “Cannabis Castle” was welcoming visitors, some of them coming from far away, such as myself (I was living in Paris), showing them, maybe for the first time, female plants grown in the absence of male plants. They were in full bloom, exuding everything they had in the hope that the much-awaited pollen would materialize. Looking back, I can say it was the beginning of a revolution – a move away from the ancestral way of growing in fields exposed to both sun and wind.
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Cannabis is fundamentally different from other “drug plants”
One characteristic that sets cannabis apart from all the other drug plants (coffee, tobacco, coca, poppy, etc.) is that it’s free of alkaloids. Caffeine, nicotine, cocaine, morphine are all alkaloids, toxic compounds deadly in large doses. In this perspective, weed stands apart, as it is not toxic. This peculiarity also explains why its chemical composition was elucidated much later than that of these other plants.
In the beginning of the 19 th century, alkaloids were widely identified; yet it was not before 1964 that THC’s chemical formula, cannabis’ psychoactive molecule, was discovered, thanks to professor Mechoulam and his team.
Up until the 60s, a pharmacist – the person preparing drugs – receiving a batch of hemp (its Latin name being Cannabis L., the L meaning “according to Linnaeus’ classification”) had no way to determine the amounts of active ingredients contained in the plant. For centuries, and still in the 50s, all varieties of Cannabis L. were indistinctively called “hemp” in Europe; the only distinction made was for hemp imported from India and neighbouring regions, which was called “Indian hemp”. It was thus impossible to prepare in our countries drugs with predictable potencies. This explains (conspiracy theories apart) why cannabis was purely and simply left out of the official pharmacopoeia of European countries in the 50s.
The race for THC
Prohibition and the consequent black-market set very particular conditions. When a substance is illegal, every effort is made to ensure that the final products are as potent as possible (under the Prohibition era in the States, people distilled whiskey or gin, they didn’t brew beer).
The same phenomenon happened with cannabis: in the decades during which prevailed the “war on drugs”, it was all about who would produce the strongest weed. In the US and the Netherlands, everyone boasted about exceedingly high THC levels (which had become by then easy to determine).
Meanwhile, anecdotal reports of cannabis having beneficial effects for people suffering from glaucoma, nausea caused by chemotherapy or multiple sclerosis kept on building up. More and more patients demanded access to the plant; but their request was always denied on the ground that science had not yet confirmed its efficiency. Well of course, President Nixon in 1970 explicitly prohibited any research into its medicinal properties.
WASHINGTON, DC – APRIL 29: President Richard Nixon at a news conference. Photographed April 29, 1971 in Washington, DC. (Photo by Ellsworth Davis/The Washington Post via Getty Images)
But some twenty years later, research made a strong comeback. We rediscovered CBD, another cannabinoid that had been identified before THC but was overshadowed by it.
In nature, THC and CBD balance one another: the former boosts imagination and creativity, whereas the latter calms down and relaxes.
Who would have thought that this non-psychoactive cannabinoid would become so popular and that there would be such a high demand for CBD products?
Indeed, CBD is now praised for its countless virtues. It is an excellent anti-inflammatory; it is efficient against chronic pain; its neuroprotective properties allow for a quicker and better recovery after a stroke; it protects against some forms of cancer – all of which, paradoxically, are particularly appealing to the senior population. An acquaintance of mine recently found himself saying “Dad, you were on my case for twenty years because I smoked weed and now, you’re consuming more cannabis products than I am!”
The other day, a French gardener offered me some hash… made from legal hemp! He proudly warned me “You’ll see those terpenes…”, and indeed, its fragrance was lovely. Being carried away as he was, he seemed to forget that to me, his hash was yet short on the essential.
It has become clear that in this day and age, where countless people suffer from stress, the calming effect of cannabis is precious, even in the absence of THC.
Meanwhile, young Americans, especially Californians, started growing weary of weed in its natural state, calling it old school. The arrival of the electronic cigarette (and the prominent publicity around it) set up the stage for a deep transformation. Many consumers started putting their trust into an electronic joint, a man-made industrial product, and rejecting nature’s raw plant material. And dabbing, although different, has only made the cleavage greater.
Myself putting all my trust in plants, I have a hard time understanding this shift. I do care a lot about the diversity of varieties (and it is no secret I have a soft spot for true sativas, Hazes in particular), but I prefer staying as close as possible to the plant. That’s my rustic side! Yet, I do acknowledge the facts: we are going through another little revolution.
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The revolution of chemistry
Chemistry’s time has come, whether from the perspective of large pharmaceuticals eager to commercialize and patent cannabis-derived products, or that of vanguard consumers. Everyone is busy isolating, concentrating, extracting (a dynamic that similarly affected the coca leaves – used in rituals amongst Andeans cultures – when it became the raw material for producing that white powder called cocaine…)
Those among us that lived through the 70s have witnessed over less than half a century a shift from a world where psychoactive hemp was grown in a traditional way, in places that were still being referred to as “the third world” to an era (the present day) where western countries produce their own stocks of cannabis using leading-edge technologies and transforming them into ever more potent products.
Maybe the legalisation movement that is picking up in some western countries could reverse, at least partially, some of the consequences of that dynamic so that people will start appreciating again weed that feels more natural, weed that resembles more closely the plant grown throughout history in many different parts of the world.
The Importance of Collecting and Harvesting Cannabis Seeds
T here was a time in our not-too-recent history when a sack of weed almost always included seeds. However, as cannabis cultivation evolved, so did the demand for sensimilla, or high-quality, seedless cannabis. Breeders not only began developing their own customized strains, they also started specializing in the cultivation of very special cannabis seeds. These seeds are used in both the breeding process and the wide-spread distribution of the carefully created strain itself.
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The Role of Seeds in the Breeding Process
The process of breeding the perfect strain requires a controlled production of seeds. Breeders must force their favorite plants to produce pollen and then use it to pollinate other favorite strains, thus creating “cross-breeds” of their two selected parents. Note that this process is not haphazard like the seeds one might find in a poorly-controlled outside marijuana grow – cannabis seed cultivation is a precise process that requires controlled, sanitary environments that are thoroughly sealed to prevent outside dander from getting in.
The plants can “veg” here, or continue their vegetative growth phase if trying to increase their size before seed production begins, but it’s not necessary. Once the plants are large enough, they are put into a flowering light cycle of 12 hours light and 12 hours of complete darkness.
Within a few weeks, the male will produce pollen sacks which will soon burst and get carried off into the air to pollinate the females. The females will now produce seeds which may continue to be used in the breeding process or harvested and sold to the public.
For the purpose of seed production, only around 20 females are recommended per male. However, a single male can realistically pollinate hundreds of females, hence the importance of a tightly sealed environment during the seed production process.
Natural Cannabis Seed Production
Cannabis is an amazingly resilient plant and doesn’t require male pollination to produce seeds. Evolution has bestowed upon the cannabis plant an amazing ability to self-pollinate when there are no males around to do it for her. Whether stressed or old (for example, a female cannabis plant that is not harvested before her prime), if a female senses an environment that is not conducive to long-term growth, she will produce seeds in hopes that her legacy will continue.
This is how feminized cannabis seeds are produced. Breeders will carefully stress a healthy female plant to “trick” her into thinking her life or safety is in danger.
One common method is to stress the female by applying solutions like colloidal silver or silver nitrate generously onto the leaves when she first enters the flower light cycle. Within 3-4 weeks, male sex organs will appear on the nodes of the female plant. Please note, applying these stress-inducing solutions to plants renders them unsmokable. The particulate cannot be washed off thoroughly because it settles deep into the surface of the plant. This method is for seed production only.
Another method is to simply let a healthy female age. If she grows past maturation, she will produce male “banana” pollen sacks without any male chromosomes. Though she may look like a hermaphroditic plant at this point (one containing the chromosomes of both male and female), the pollen she produces will contain only XX chromosomes and therefore cannot pass the Y (male) chromosome down to its heirs. Pollen collected in this way is then used to pollinate another female which will then produce female-only seeds.
How to Collect Cannabis Seeds
Though many grow ops aim to do away with seeds to grow fine sensimilla instead, sometimes breeders want seeds. Whether to grow their own crops or to sell to a demanding public, cannabis seed cultivators have their goals set on producing healthy, happy seeds in lieu of big, beautiful buds.
Seed crops are harvested when the seeds are plump and dark, often with a tiger stripe appearance (around six to eight weeks into flowering).
After harvesting, the bud is dried and the seeds are collected. Small-scale seed collection is done by simply crumbling the cannabis flower and collecting the seeds that fall out (this video by Johnnys Green Extractions offers a clever way to separate seeds from flower using an old vinyl record cover).
Commercial seed collection usually involves special machines that crush dried flower then pass the trim and seeds into separate bins. After seeds are collected, they’re stored in opaque, air-tight containers to prevent them from rotting or sprouting prematurely.
Though cannabis flower is usually cultivated to be seedless, sometimes the seeds are the whole point. Breeders pay special attention to the pollination, harvest time, and drying process when growing cannabis specifically for the seeds to improve the likelihood of a successful harvest.
Frequently Asked Questions
How are Feminized Seeds Made?
Feminized seeds are made by inducing a female plant to produce seeds without being pollinated by a male. These resulting seeds will not contain a male Y chromosome, only retaining the two X chromosomes from the female plant, and thus all of the resulting seeds will be female. This process can be done by stressing the plant, altering it with chemicals, or allowing it to grow past its harvesting time.
How Many Plants Can a Male Cannabis Plant Pollinate?
For professional production, it is recommended to pollinate about 20 female plants per male plant, but this is done to ensure tight oversight and quality control. In the wild, a single male plant can pollinate hundreds of female cannabis plants.
Can You Smoke Cannabis That Has Been Treated with Colloidal Silver?
No, colloidal silver is only used on plants raised for seeding purposes, it makes the plants that it is sprayed on unsmokable.
How are Strains Crossbred?
Cannabis breeders create crossbreeds by using the pollen of one strain to pollenate seeds with another strain. The resulting seeds will have genetics from both parents. These new plants are selected by their desirable traits and then stabilized through further breeding, typically using the genetics of their parent strains.
Have you ever harvested cannabis seeds? Share your experiences in the comments below!
Abby is a writer and founder of Cannabis Content, a marketplace designed to connect cannabis writers and creatives with businesses in the industry. She has been a professional cannabis writer since 2014 and regularly contributes to publications such as PotGuide and M&F Talent. She is also the Content Director at Fortuna Hemp, America’s leading feminized hemp seed bank. Follow Abby on Facebook, Twitter, and Linkedin.