Cannabis seeds are the missing link to growing your own. Here’s how to find the good ones.
Cannabis seeds and buds are like the chicken and egg; we all know which had to come first. But in these strange times we live in, you begin to wonder whether the law-makers missed biology class.
The state of Missouri legalized medical cannabis in late 2018. However, it still remains a felony to acquire seeds either within Missouri, or from any of the other 32 states where medical cannabis is currently legal. It seems that those who want to provide medical cannabis in Missouri may have to break the law in the process with black market cannabis seeds. The authorities, for their part, are expected to turn a blind eye.
So, if you want to grow your own medicine or provide for others, how do you go about purchasing the seeds? What are the things to look out for?
Where Can You Buy Cannabis Seeds?
Cannabis seeds are most commonly bought from online seed banks. In effect, these are the Noah’s Ark when it comes to all things seed-related. The best breeders in the world sell their cannabis seeds to these banks, who in turn sell the product to individuals.
There are many seed banks online. Many lie within the U.S. and Canada while other popular alternatives are based in the Netherlands or Spain, where cannabis laws are lax. Some widely-used seed banks with a solid reputation include MSNL and Ministry of Cannabis, both of which are based in Europe, and Crop King Seeds in Canada. All three of these ship worldwide.
What are the Potential Problems with Seed Banks?
A seed bank is only as good as the seeds they house. As with any economic opportunity, the Green Rush is attracting all sorts. Most are dedicated to the art of supplying only the best seeds while maintaining the integrity of the strains. However, many others aren’t.
Some are concerned with selling as many seeds as possible at the highest price with little regard for the end consumer. Patients have reported buying dud seeds online that won’t germinate, while others, more worryingly, have reported buying what they believed to be feminized seeds that turned out to be males. After caring for a plant for weeks, coupled with the money spent on energy costs, it is incredibly disheartening to see hard work and money go down the drain.
This underlines the importance of only using reputable seed banks when purchasing cannabis seeds. Many top sites allow you to browse by breeder. This lets you source the best seeds from those who take the art form seriously.
How to Tell If You’re Getting Quality Genetics
Many breeders speak of unstable genetics. This is where the origins of the seed are unknown. Any responsible breeder should be able to tell you exactly where the seeds came from and exactly what strains were crossed or backcrossed in the process. Without this information, you run the risk of purchasing a seed that could be literally anything.
As the stigma deteriorates in parts where legalization is rolling out, more people are experimenting with growing their own medicine. With this comes the opportunity for underhanded tactics on the part of some breeders. Always remember that a responsible professional breeder will run their strains through several rounds of backcrossing to stabilize the genetic expression for consistency. Those with less benign intentions may simply cross two strains and sell the hybrid directly.
What Does The Law Say About Cannabis Seeds?
Many online seed banks will ship worldwide even though cannabis seeds are still illegal to possess in many jurisdictions. For instance, companies will ship packages with minimal information so as to mislead customs. It does, however, remain illegal to bring cannabis seeds into the U.S. So remember that if intercepted, authorities will confiscate your seeds.
When it comes to buying seeds at dispensaries in states where cannabis seeds are legal to possess, dispensaries often must play by different rules. Strict laws in some states prevent out-of-state visitors from purchasing seeds.
In the U.S., those who live within states where it’s legal to possess seeds are free to purchase them. However, patients cannot cross state lines with those seeds. When it comes to acquiring seeds for medicinal cannabis consumption, those living in states where it’s legal must produce a medical card if they wish to purchase seeds.
North of the border in Canada, things are very different. Provided you purchase legal cannabis seeds from an authorized seed bank, you’re free to cultivate up to four plants. However, growers must not sell the harvest and cannot have the plants in a space that is visible to the public.
What to Know Before You Grow
If seeds are legal to possess in your jurisdiction, then many options should exist for purchasing legal seeds. While we’re all pretty good at evaluating a flashy website, it’s not so easy to evaluate the seed itself. Do your due diligence and only purchase from the expert breeders who offer high-quality seeds. You should always go with those who take pride in preserving the strong genetics of our favorite strains. And, when it comes to new strains, bear in mind that these must be thoroughly tested. As a result, it often takes time for new strains to become available in many seed banks. Finally, enjoy tending to your plants!