In order to achieve your goal of creating top-of-the shelf and stable cannabis strains, growers ensure that they are well familiar with a number of plant genetic concepts which can help in stabilizing the desired characteristics from the parent strains to the offspring plants.
The basic foundation behind plant genetics is Mendel’s Laws, or the Mendelian inheritance, created by Gregor Mendel. These laws explain the inheritance expected by different traits among individual plants of the same species. Because of these laws, it is now possible to create auto flowering strains aside from the wide range of possibilities that can still happen if they are understood correctly. If you are planning to cultivate the best cannabis seeds, knowing about these concepts can also help a lot.
Cannabis Strains – Understanding Genetic Concepts
When it comes to growing cannabis plants, it is very important to start with the basics. This includes understanding the different concepts involved. Here are some of them:
A purebred strain, otherwise known as landrace, is the endemic marijuana strain of a particular area. Generally speaking, provided that they stay pure, these plants are expected to be really homogenous, which means that they will have almost similar flowering and growing patterns, even their organoleptic properties.
Inbred line, or IBL, refers to how stable hybrid strains are referred to. These hybrids are those which have already been stabilized accordingly. As such, they show just little variations of their phenotypes. Getting an inbred line is quite challenging, and requires patience and time. Among the most common inbred line strains are Northern Lights and Skunk. There are also other strains which have been stabilized highly throughout the years, such as the famous White Widow and Blueberry Strains.
With this knowledge at hand, you can then move on with the F1. It is the first filial generation coming from the cross of two parents, whether inbred line or landraces. The first offspring of the combination will showcase the vigor of the hybrid, which means that the resulting strains will end up to have better quality compared to their parents. In fact, they are usually strong and more vigorous compared to the parent generation, with better production of flowers. They are also quite homogenous.
The next part of the process is F2. It is the second filial generation, which comes as a result of crossing individual strains from the F1. At this point, the hybrid vigor will be lost, including the stability of the first one. The offspring of the F2 will often show 50% of the individual strain with similar characteristics to either the mother or father strain, while the other half show intermediate traits. By combining together F2 generations, the resulting strain is referred to as the F3. Strains under the auto flowering variety are usually developed with this technique, thus achieving quality auto flowering hybrids from the F4.
A backcross, or BX, refers to the cross between an F1 strain and one of the original parents. This technique is quite useful, particularly if you are interested in stabilizing specific traits from the parents to the offspring. This includes strength and resistance to diseases and pests, flowering time, yield and others. Once the first BX1 is achieved, it can be crossed again with the original parent to fix more features, or even reinforcing the fixed ones, thus achieving the second backcross, or the BX2.
The backcrossing technique is usually implemented to replicate strains that are clone-only in seed form, thus allowing for the creation of plants from seed, which is quite similar to clone-only specimens. In this particular case, a male plant, often referred to as donor, which usually has a trait that is lacked by clone-only strains, is crossed with the original mother as often as possible.
Cannabis Poly Hybrids
A poly-hybrid refers to the cross between two different, non-stabilized hybrids. Most commercial marijuana varieties offered by different seed banks are poly hybrids. They are not referred to as F1s because their parents are neither stabilized or landrace strains. The resulting combination are typically vigorous, yet unstable.
With a challenging process of choosing, some good strains can be found, though this will still highly depend on the stability of the landrace parents selected in order to create the hybrid, as well as the overall stability of the hybrid parents. After several crosses among the strains, an amazing poly hybrid can be created.
Indeed, learning about basic concepts involved in the cultivating of the best cannabis seeds is very important. This will ensure the success of your overall growing. For one, this will allow you to experiment on your seeds, even allowing you to create your strains, given more time and experience on your end. This will also allow you to be more familiar with the best varieties available.