A plain-language summary about cannabis, how people use it, its effects on the brain and overall health, and treatment options for misuse. Cannabis Seeds Canada: Rules, Regulations & Best Local Seed Banks On October 17, 2018, Canada became the second country in the world to legalize marijuana. For many, this legalization has been an Bag seeds are the obvious first choice for novice weed growers. Will bag seeds grow? Are they worth growing? Are they feminized? Find out!
Cannabis (Marijuana) DrugFacts
Marijuana refers to the dried leaves, flowers, stems, and seeds from the Cannabis sativa or Cannabis indica plant. The plant contains the mind-altering chemical THC and other similar compounds. Extracts can also be made from the cannabis plant (see “Marijuana Extracts”).
Marijuana is the most commonly used addictive drug after tobacco and alcohol. 1 Its use is widespread among young people. In 2018, more than 11.8 million young adults used marijuana in the past year. 1 According to the Monitoring the Future survey, rates of past year marijuana use among middle and high school students have remained steady, but the number of teens in 8th and 10th grades who say they use it daily has increased. With the growing popularity of vaping devices, teens have started vaping THC (the ingredient in marijuana that produces the high), with nearly 4% of 12th graders saying they vape THC daily. In addition, the number of young people who believe regular marijuana use is risky is decreasing. 2
Legalization of marijuana for medical use or adult recreational use in a growing number of states may affect these views. Read more about marijuana as medicine in our DrugFacts: Marijuana as Medicine.
How do people use marijuana?
People smoke marijuana in hand-rolled cigarettes (joints) or in pipes or water pipes (bongs). They also smoke it in blunts—emptied cigars that have been partly or completely refilled with marijuana. To avoid inhaling smoke, some people are using vaporizers. These devices pull the active ingredients (including THC) from the marijuana and collect their vapor in a storage unit. A person then inhales the vapor, not the smoke. Some vaporizers use a liquid marijuana extract.
People can mix marijuana in food (edibles), such as brownies, cookies, or candy, or brew it as a tea. A newly popular method of use is smoking or eating different forms of THC-rich resins (see “Marijuana Extracts”).
- hash oil or honey oil—a gooey liquid
- wax or budder—a soft solid with a texture like lip balm
- shatter—a hard, amber-colored solid
These extracts can deliver extremely large amounts of THC to the body, and their use has sent some people to the emergency room. Another danger is in preparing these extracts, which usually involves butane (lighter fluid). A number of people have caused fires and explosions and have been seriously burned from using butane to make extracts at home. 3,4
How does marijuana affect the brain?
Marijuana has both short-and long-term effects on the brain.
When a person smokes marijuana, THC quickly passes from the lungs into the bloodstream. The blood carries the chemical to the brain and other organs throughout the body. The body absorbs THC more slowly when the person eats or drinks it. In that case, they generally feel the effects after 30 minutes to 1 hour.
THC acts on specific brain cell receptors that ordinarily react to natural THC-like chemicals. These natural chemicals play a role in normal brain development and function.
Marijuana over activates parts of the brain that contain the highest number of these receptors. This causes the “high” that people feel. Other effects include:
- altered senses (for example, seeing brighter colors)
- altered sense of time
- changes in mood
- impaired body movement
- difficulty with thinking and problem-solving
- impaired memory
- hallucinations (when taken in high doses)
- delusions (when taken in high doses)
- psychosis (risk is highest with regular use of high potency marijuana)
Marijuana also affects brain development. When people begin using marijuana as teenagers, the drug may impair thinking, memory, and learning functions and affect how the brain builds connections between the areas necessary for these functions. Researchers are still studying how long marijuana’s effects last and whether some changes may be permanent.
For example, a study from New Zealand conducted in part by researchers at Duke University showed that people who started smoking marijuana heavily in their teens and had an ongoing marijuana use disorder lost an average of 8 IQ points between ages 13 and 38. The lost mental abilities didn’t fully return in those who quit marijuana as adults. Those who started smoking marijuana as adults didn’t show notable IQ declines. 5
In another recent study on twins, those who used marijuana showed a significant decline in general knowledge and in verbal ability (equivalent to 4 IQ points) between the preteen years and early adulthood, but no predictable difference was found between twins when one used marijuana and the other didn’t. This suggests that the IQ decline in marijuana users may be caused by something other than marijuana, such as shared familial factors (e.g., genetics, family environment). 6 NIDA’s Adolescent Brain Cognitive Development (ABCD) study, a major longitudinal study, is tracking a large sample of young Americans from late childhood to early adulthood to help clarify how and to what extent marijuana and other substances, alone and in combination, affect adolescent brain development. Read more about the ABCD study on our Longitudinal Study of Adolescent Brain and Cognitive Development (ABCD Study) webpage.
A Rise in Marijuana’s THC Levels
The amount of THC in marijuana has been increasing steadily over the past few decades. 7 For a person who’s new to marijuana use, this may mean exposure to higher THC levels with a greater chance of a harmful reaction. Higher THC levels may explain the rise in emergency room visits involving marijuana use.
The popularity of edibles also increases the chance of harmful reactions. Edibles take longer to digest and produce a high. Therefore, people may consume more to feel the effects faster, leading to dangerous results.
Higher THC levels may also mean a greater risk for addiction if people are regularly exposing themselves to high doses.
What are the other health effects of marijuana?
Marijuana use may have a wide range of effects, both physical and mental.
- Breathing problems. Marijuana smoke irritates the lungs, and people who smoke marijuana frequently can have the same breathing problems as those who smoke tobacco. These problems include daily cough and phlegm, more frequent lung illness, and a higher risk of lung infections. Researchers so far haven’t found a higher risk for lung cancer in people who smoke marijuana. 8
- Increased heart rate. Marijuana raises heart rate for up to 3 hours after smoking. This effect may increase the chance of heart attack. Older people and those with heart problems may be at higher risk.
- Problems with child development during and after pregnancy. One study found that about 20% of pregnant women 24-years-old and younger screened positive for marijuana. However, this study also found that women were about twice as likely to screen positive for marijuana use via a drug test than they state in self-reported measures. 9 This suggests that self-reported rates of marijuana use in pregnant females is not an accurate measure of marijuana use and may be underreporting their use. Additionally, in one study of dispensaries, nonmedical personnel at marijuana dispensaries were recommending marijuana to pregnant women for nausea, but medical experts warn against it. This concerns medical experts because marijuana use during pregnancy is linked to lower birth weight 10 and increased risk of both brain and behavioral problems in babies. If a pregnant woman uses marijuana, the drug may affect certain developing parts of the fetus’s brain. Children exposed to marijuana in the womb have an increased risk of problems with attention, 11 memory, and problem-solving compared to unexposed children. 12 Some research also suggests that moderate amounts of THC are excreted into the breast milk of nursing mothers. 13 With regular use, THC can reach amounts in breast milk that could affect the baby’s developing brain. Other recent research suggests an increased risk of preterm births. 27 More research is needed. Read our Marijuana Research Report for more information about marijuana and pregnancy.
- Intense nausea and vomiting. Regular, long-term marijuana use can lead to some people to develop Cannabinoid Hyperemesis Syndrome. This causes users to experience regular cycles of severe nausea, vomiting, and dehydration, sometimes requiring emergency medical attention. 14
Reports of Deaths Related to Vaping
The Food and Drug Administration has alerted the public to hundreds of reports of serious lung illnesses associated with vaping, including several deaths. They are working with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) to investigate the cause of these illnesses. Many of the suspect products tested by the states or federal health officials have been identified as vaping products containing THC, the main psychotropic ingredient in marijuana. Some of the patients reported a mixture of THC and nicotine; and some reported vaping nicotine alone. No one substance has been identified in all of the samples tested, and it is unclear if the illnesses are related to one single compound. Until more details are known, FDA officials have warned people not to use any vaping products bought on the street, and they warn against modifying any products purchased in stores. They are also asking people and health professionals to report any adverse effects. The CDC has posted an information page for consumers.
Long-term marijuana use has been linked to mental illness in some people, such as:
- temporary hallucinations
- temporary paranoia
- worsening symptoms in patients with schizophrenia—a severe mental disorder with symptoms such as hallucinations, paranoia, and disorganized thinking
Marijuana use has also been linked to other mental health problems, such as depression, anxiety, and suicidal thoughts among teens. However, study findings have been mixed.
Are there effects of inhaling secondhand marijuana smoke?
Failing a Drug Test?
While it’s possible to fail a drug test after inhaling secondhand marijuana smoke, it’s unlikely. Studies show that very little THC is released in the air when a person exhales. Research findings suggest that, unless people are in an enclosed room, breathing in lots of smoke for hours at close range, they aren’t likely to fail a drug test. 15,16 Even if some THC was found in the blood, it wouldn’t be enough to fail a test.
Getting High from Passive Exposure?
Similarly, it’s unlikely that secondhand marijuana smoke would give nonsmoking people in a confined space a high from passive exposure. Studies have shown that people who don’t use marijuana report only mild effects of the drug from a nearby smoker, under extreme conditions (breathing in lots of marijuana smoke for hours in an enclosed room). 17
Other Health Effects?
More research is needed to know if secondhand marijuana smoke has similar health risks as secondhand tobacco smoke. A recent study on rats suggests that secondhand marijuana smoke can do as much damage to the heart and blood vessels as secondhand tobacco smoke. 20 But researchers haven’t fully explored the effect of secondhand marijuana smoke on humans. What they do know is that the toxins and tar found in marijuana smoke could affect vulnerable people, such as children or people with asthma.
How Does Marijuana Affect a Person’s Life?
Compared to those who don’t use marijuana, those who frequently use large amounts report the following:
- lower life satisfaction
- poorer mental health
- poorer physical health
- more relationship problems
People also report less academic and career success. For example, marijuana use is linked to a higher likelihood of dropping out of school. 18 It’s also linked to more job absences, accidents, and injuries. 19
Is marijuana a gateway drug?
Use of alcohol, tobacco, and marijuana are likely to come before use of other drugs. 21,22 Animal studies have shown that early exposure to addictive substances, including THC, may change how the brain responds to other drugs. For example, when rodents are repeatedly exposed to THC when they’re young, they later show an enhanced response to other addictive substances—such as morphine or nicotine—in the areas of the brain that control reward, and they’re more likely to show addiction-like behaviors. 23,24
Although these findings support the idea of marijuana as a “gateway drug,” the majority of people who use marijuana don’t go on to use other “harder” drugs. It’s also important to note that other factors besides biological mechanisms, such as a person’s social environment, are also critical in a person’s risk for drug use and addiction. Read more about marijuana as a gateway drug in our Marijuana Research Report.
Can a person overdose on marijuana?
An overdose occurs when a person uses enough of the drug to produce life-threatening symptoms or death. There are no reports of teens or adults dying from marijuana alone. However, some people who use marijuana can feel some very uncomfortable side effects, especially when using marijuana products with high THC levels. People have reported symptoms such as anxiety and paranoia, and in rare cases, an extreme psychotic reaction (which can include delusions and hallucinations) that can lead them to seek treatment in an emergency room.
While a psychotic reaction can occur following any method of use, emergency room responders have seen an increasing number of cases involving marijuana edibles. Some people (especially preteens and teens) who know very little about edibles don’t realize that it takes longer for the body to feel marijuana’s effects when eaten rather than smoked. So they consume more of the edible, trying to get high faster or thinking they haven’t taken enough. In addition, some babies and toddlers have been seriously ill after ingesting marijuana or marijuana edibles left around the house.
Is marijuana addictive?
Marijuana use can lead to the development of a substance use disorder, a medical illness in which the person is unable to stop using even though it’s causing health and social problems in their life. Severe substance use disorders are also known as addiction. Research suggests that between 9 and 30 percent of those who use marijuana may develop some degree of marijuana use disorder. 25 People who begin using marijuana before age 18 are four to seven times more likely than adults to develop a marijuana use disorder. 26
Many people who use marijuana long term and are trying to quit report mild withdrawal symptoms that make quitting difficult. These include:
- decreased appetite
What treatments are available for marijuana use disorder?
No medications are currently available to treat marijuana use disorder, but behavioral support has been shown to be effective. Examples include therapy and motivational incentives (providing rewards to patients who remain drug-free). Continuing research may lead to new medications that help ease withdrawal symptoms, block the effects of marijuana, and prevent relapse.
Points to Remember
- Marijuana refers to the dried leaves, flowers, stems, and seeds from the Cannabis sativa or Cannabis indica plant.
- The plant contains the mind-altering chemical THC and other related compounds.
- People use marijuana by smoking, eating, drinking, or inhaling it.
- Smoking and vaping THC-rich extracts from the marijuana plant (a practice called dabbing) is on the rise.
- THC overactivates certain brain cell receptors, resulting in effects such as:
- altered senses
- changes in mood
- impaired body movement
- difficulty with thinking and problem-solving
- impaired memory and learning
- hallucinations and paranoia
- breathing problems
- possible harm to a fetus’s brain in pregnant women
For more information about marijuana and marijuana use, visit our:
- Substance Abuse Center for Behavioral Health Statistics and Quality. Results from the 2018 National Survey on Drug Use and Health: Detailed Tables. SAMHSA. https://www.samhsa.gov/data/report/2018-nsduh-detailed-tables Accessed December 2019.
- Johnston L, O’Malley P, Miech R, Bachman J, Schulenberg J. Monitoring the Future National Survey Results on Drug Use: 1975-2015: Overview: Key Findings on Adolescent Drug Use. Ann Arbor, MI: Institute for Social Research, The University of Michigan; 2015.
- Bell C, Slim J, Flaten HK, Lindberg G, Arek W, Monte AA. Butane Hash Oil Burns Associated with Marijuana Liberalization in Colorado. J Med Toxicol Off J Am Coll Med Toxicol. 2015;11(4):422-425. doi:10.1007/s13181-015-0501-0.
- Romanowski KS, Barsun A, Kwan P, et al. Butane Hash Oil Burns: A 7-Year Perspective on a Growing Problem. J Burn Care Res Off Publ Am Burn Assoc. 2017;38(1):e165-e171. doi:10.1097/BCR.0000000000000334.
- Meier MH, Caspi A, Ambler A, et al. Persistent cannabis users show neuropsychological decline from childhood to midlife. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2012;109(40):E2657-E2664. doi:10.1073/pnas.1206820109.
- Jackson NJ, Isen JD, Khoddam R, et al. Impact of adolescent marijuana use on intelligence: Results from two longitudinal twin studies. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2016;113(5):E500-E508. doi:10.1073/pnas.1516648113.
- Mehmedic Z, Chandra S, Slade D, et al. Potency trends of Δ9-THC and other cannabinoids in confiscated cannabis preparations from 1993 to 2008. J Forensic Sci. 2010;55(5):1209-1217. doi:10.1111/j.1556-4029.2010.01441.x.
- National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. The Health Effects of Cannabis and Cannabinoids: Current State of Evidence and Recommendations for Research. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press; 2017.
- Young-Wolff KC, Tucker L-Y, Alexeeff S, et al. Trends in Self-reported and Biochemically Tested Marijuana Use Among Pregnant Females in California From 2009-2016. JAMA. 2017;318(24):2490. doi:10.1001/jama.2017.17225
- The National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine, Health and Medicine Division, Board on Population Health and Public Health Practice, Committee on the Health Effects of Marijuana: An Evidence Review and Research Agenda. The Health Effects of Cannabis and Cannabinoids: The Current State of Evidence and Recommendations for Research.http://nationalacademies.org/hmd/Reports/2017/health-effects-of-cannabis-and-cannabinoids.aspx. Accessed January 19, 2017.
- Goldschmidt L, Day NL, Richardson GA. Effects of prenatal marijuana exposure on child behavior problems at age 10. Neurotoxicol Teratol. 2000;22(3):325-336.
- Richardson GA, Ryan C, Willford J, Day NL, Goldschmidt L. Prenatal alcohol and marijuana exposure: effects on neuropsychological outcomes at 10 years. Neurotoxicol Teratol. 2002;24(3):309-320.
- Perez-Reyes M, Wall ME. Presence of delta9-tetrahydrocannabinol in human milk. N Engl J Med. 1982;307(13):819-820. doi:10.1056/NEJM198209233071311.
- Galli JA, Sawaya RA, Friedenberg FK. Cannabinoid Hyperemesis Syndrome. Curr Drug Abuse Rev. 2011;4(4):241-249.
- Röhrich J, Schimmel I, Zörntlein S, et al. Concentrations of delta9-tetrahydrocannabinol and 11-nor-9-carboxytetrahydrocannabinol in blood and urine after passive exposure to Cannabis smoke in a coffee shop. J Anal Toxicol. 2010;34(4):196-203.
- Cone EJ, Bigelow GE, Herrmann ES, et al. Non-smoker exposure to secondhand cannabis smoke. I. Urine screening and confirmation results. J Anal Toxicol. 2015;39(1):1-12. doi:10.1093/jat/bku116.
- Herrmann ES, Cone EJ, Mitchell JM, et al. Non-smoker exposure to secondhand cannabis smoke II: Effect of room ventilation on the physiological, subjective, and behavioral/cognitive effects. Drug Alcohol Depend. 2015;151:194-202. doi:10.1016/j.drugalcdep.2015.03.019.
- McCaffrey DF, Pacula RL, Han B, Ellickson P. Marijuana Use and High School Dropout: The Influence of Unobservables. Health Econ. 2010;19(11):1281-1299. doi:10.1002/hec.1561.
- Zwerling C, Ryan J, Orav EJ. The efficacy of preemployment drug screening for marijuana and cocaine in predicting employment outcome. JAMA. 1990;264(20):2639-2643.
- Wang X, Derakhshandeh R, Liu J, et al. One Minute of Marijuana Secondhand Smoke Exposure Substantially Impairs Vascular Endothelial Function. J Am Heart Assoc. 2016;5(8). doi:10.1161/JAHA.116.003858.
- Secades-Villa R, Garcia-Rodríguez O, Jin CJ, Wang S, Blanco C. Probability and predictors of the cannabis gateway effect: a national study. Int J Drug Policy. 2015;26(2):135-142. doi:10.1016/j.drugpo.2014.07.011.
- Levine A, Huang Y, Drisaldi B, et al. Molecular mechanism for a gateway drug: epigenetic changes initiated by nicotine prime gene expression by cocaine. Sci Transl Med. 2011;3(107):107ra109. doi:10.1126/scitranslmed.3003062.
- Panlilio LV, Zanettini C, Barnes C, Solinas M, Goldberg SR. Prior exposure to THC increases the addictive effects of nicotine in rats. Neuropsychopharmacol Off Publ Am Coll Neuropsychopharmacol. 2013;38(7):1198-1208. doi:10.1038/npp.2013.16.
- Cadoni C, Pisanu A, Solinas M, Acquas E, Di Chiara G. Behavioural sensitization after repeated exposure to Delta 9-tetrahydrocannabinol and cross-sensitization with morphine. Psychopharmacology (Berl). 2001;158(3):259-266. doi:10.1007/s002130100875.
- Hasin DS, Saha TD, Kerridge BT, et al. Prevalence of Marijuana Use Disorders in the United States Between 2001-2002 and 2012-2013. JAMA Psychiatry. 2015;72(12):1235-1242. doi:10.1001/jamapsychiatry.2015.1858.
- Winters KC, Lee C-YS. Likelihood of developing an alcohol and cannabis use disorder during youth: association with recent use and age. Drug Alcohol Depend. 2008;92(1-3):239-247. doi:10.1016/j.drugalcdep.2007.08.005.
- Corsi DJ, Walsh L, Weiss D, et al. Association Between Self-reported Prenatal Cannabis Use and Maternal, Perinatal, and Neonatal Outcomes. JAMA. Published online June 18, 2019322(2):145–152. doi:10.1001/jama.2019.8734
This publication is available for your use and may be reproduced in its entirety without permission from NIDA. Citation of the source is appreciated, using the following language: Source: National Institute on Drug Abuse; National Institutes of Health; U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.
Cannabis Seeds Canada: Rules, Regulations & Best Local Seed Banks
On October 17, 2018, Canada became the second country in the world to legalize marijuana. For many, this legalization has been an opportunity to nurture a green thumb. In addition to the recreational use of marijuana and marijuana products, growing cannabis from licensed seed or seedling is legal with a limit of four plants per residence for personal use in most places.
Getting started with growing your own cannabis begins with finding the best Canadian seed bank. That can prove difficult, as there ’ s a vast and growing market of seed banks across the country that vary in quality. To help you out, we did the research to identify some of the best Canadian seed banks out there.
The 5 Best Canadian Seed Banks that Ship to Canada
- Crop King Seeds – Editor’s Choice
- I Love Growing Marijuana Seed Bank – Most Reliable
- Quebec Cannabis Seeds – Best CBD Selection
- Rocket Seeds – Best Value
- Sonoma Seeds – Fastest Shipping
Following our list of the best Canadian seed banks we will break down how to avoid scams and ensure that your cannabis seeds are real and of great quality.
Here is everything you need to know about the best Canadian seed banks:
1. Crop King Seeds – Editor’s Choice
- Germination guarantee on all strains
- All seeds are inspected, tested and handpicked to be mature and viable
- Free shipping for orders over $200
- Safe and secure shipping
- Customer service available 24/7
Why Crop King Seeds is Our Top Pick
There ’ s a reason Crop King Seeds is at the top of our Best Canadian Seed Banks list. Based out of BC, Crop King Seeds has been a top quality seed distributor for over 15 years. The CKS team’s goal has always been to help growers optimize their results in harvest size and THC levels by perfecting the genetics of the cannabis plant.
Ideal for both advanced growers and beginners, Crop King Seeds searches far beyond Vancouver for the highest quality breeders and strains all over the world. Because of this legwork, they are able to offer a strain selection featuring new age hybrids and classics side by side, with variety in shape, size, and color.
They have also cultivated more than 30 unique in-house strains over time they feature for sale. Despite offering over 40 strains, Crop King Seeds is investing in developing new strains and continuously expanding their line. Thanks to all 30+ of Crop King Seeds’s in-house strains, which cannot be found anywhere else, there are some higher-end, exclusive options that you can only get here, including medicinal varieties, high CBD strains, and regular, feminized, and autoflowering seeds.
Looking for a best seller? Try Blue Cookies, a high-end hybrid of Blueberry and Girl Scout Cookies GSC. Or if you’re looking for a great medical marijuana strain, try CBD White Widow or CB Diesel, a high CBD version of Sour Diesel.
What else makes Crop King such a great seed bank?
CKS guarantee a germination rate of at least 80%, standing by their seeds. If your package doesn’t get there they will also replace it for free—in fact, they’ll do that even if you don’t like the order you did receive.
Crop King Seeds makes it easy and quick to order cannabis seeds online. Search the site using the filters, including strain type (indica, sativa, hybrid), seed type (feminized, auto-flowering, regular), and THC level, and just follow the prompts.
CKS cares a lot about privacy, and they ship even Canadian orders in unmarked envelopes. Crop King Seeds basically ships in “ stealth” mode to the rest of the world, encasing seeds inside DVD cases, pens, and other hidden places to conceal them in shipping. Crop King Seeds also does not save your payment details.
Bonus: For special news, discounts, and coupons, subscribe to the newsletter.
Payments can be made with Bitcoin, US or Canadian dollars, Visa or Mastercard.
- Germination guarantee on all strains
- All seeds are inspected, tested and handpicked to be mature and viable
- Free shipping for orders over $200
- Safe and secure shipping
- Customer service available 24/7
- No free shipping on smaller orders
- Limited selection of strains
Extra perk: You ’ ll get ten free cannabis seeds that come from Canada with orders over $420.
Check out our favorite strains at CKS
2. I Love Growing Marijuana (ILGM) – Most Reliable
Today, I Love Growing Marijuana (ILGM) is among the most trusted sources of cannabis growing, breed, and seed knowledge online, but it began as the passion project of one guy. Expert cannabis grower Robert Bergman founded ILGM after growing and experimenting with his own strain development. After he founded ILGM in the Netherlands in 2012, it quickly grew into one of the most popular online seed banks in the world.
ILGM has now blossomed into a cannabis knowledge center for sharing growing information—both a source of expert knowledge and a beginner-friendly seed bank.
Compared to some of the gigantic seed banks out there, ILGM doesn’t actually have a huge selection, choosing to focus on quality over quantity. If you’re looking for a selection of hundreds strains you’ve never heard of before, you may have to supplement your buying elsewhere for this reason. However, ILGM still features an impressive range of popular strains, with dozens of the most loved and most popular strains on offer.
ILGM offers fast flowering, feminized, and autoflowering strains as well as regular cannabis seeds, from some exciting new hybrids to all of standards you’re used to and love. For example, ILGM offers top shelf Cheese, Bergman ’ s Gold Leaf, Jack Herer, Durban Poison, OG Kush, Northern Lights, Trainwreck, Purple Haze, White Widow, White Dream, and its own in-house Gorilla Glue and Gelato cultivars.
What do we love about ILGM?
First and foremost, the quality of the seeds. If you follow their guide , ILGM guarantees that your seeds will germinate. They will refund your money if they don’t.
We also love the ILGM knowledge base, a massive strain database and selection of guides that allows you to determine which cannabis seeds will work best for your grow. You can also get expert growing advice in the active forum.
ILGM offers excellent customer service, going way beyond the germination guarantee. They put the energy and time into responding to customer problems, both online and offline, as you can confirm via their Trustpilot reviews. ILGM will even replace what customs confiscates for free.
Bonus tips for ILGM:
Use the free ILGM Grow Bible , geared to help growers of all skill and experience levels. To learn all about the various growing techniques and cannabis strains, check out the ILGM YouTube channel.
ILGM ships to the United States, New Zealand, Australia, and the EU. Shipping to the US and the EU is free. Shipping to Australia and New Zealand is free for orders over US $150. ILGM offers a germination guarantee on all seeds and they ’ ll replace seeds that don ’ t work if you follow their germination guide.
The ILGM seed banks accepts bitcoin, credit cards, cash, and bank transfers. For a 10 percent discount buy your seeds with Bitcoin.
- Germination guarantee on all strains
- Free shipping
- Stealth delivery available
- Great customer service
- Smaller selection
- Selling unbranded seeds
3. Quebec Cannabis Seeds – Best CBD Selection
Quebec Cannabis Seeds is a consistent performer on most lists of the Best Canadian Seed Banks. For over 15 years, Quebec Cannabis Seeds has been creating great new varieties out of Quebec, with the aim of offering higher quality cannabis and more choice.
Why do we love Quebec Cannabis Seeds?
Among the top providers of cannabis seeds, Quebec Cannabis Seeds works with any grower ’ s budget, offering a huge range of different seed varieties, including auto-flowering seeds, high CBD seeds, feminized varieties, and regular cannabis seeds—all the things you’d expect one of the best seed banks to carry. Quebec is also one of the few seed banks out there that actually focuses on breeding cannabis and improving genetics for well-being and medical use.
You can be sure you ’ re getting your money ’ s worth with QCS. The CBD and THC levels of these seeds is high and consistent, and their germination rate guarantee of at least 80 percent gives you further peace of mind.
You ’ ll also like the special promotions and offers they ’ re often carrying. At least a few popular varieties of seeds will typically be marked down each time you visit. Or just opt for a mixed pack of high-quality feminized seeds—or maybe the fast version.
Want a specialty seed that will grow outside—in Canada? Quebec Cannabis Seeds has you covered. Looking for something that grows fast but produces strong results and good cannabinoid levels? They ’ ve got that too.
Looking for a best seller? Quebec Cannabis Black Gold feminized seeds is an in-house favorite, or try Auto Bruce Banner feminized seeds, AK-47 feminized seeds, or that heavy-hitting Gorilla Glue—another best seller.
It ’ s fast and easy to order cannabis seeds online from Quebec Cannabis Seeds. The site is user-friendly and well-organized, and you can search by seed type (feminized, auto-flowering, regular), strain type (indica, sativa, hybrid), and cannabinoid levels.
QCS stealth ships even Canadian orders, which are usually delivered in 5 to 7 days. Payments can be made with Visa or Mastercard.
- Breeder focus on medical cannabis and strains for well-being
- Strains selected to do well in North American climates
- Germination guaranteed to 80 percent
- Safe and secure shipping
- Check out the fast version strains
- No free shipping, flat $10 fee
- Great customer service, but not always available
4. Rocket Seeds – Biggest Seed Selection
Rocket Seeds is a site that carries seeds from multiple different brands—including Crop King Seeds—so it offers a much bigger variety than most other seed banks. Rocket Seeds promises fair prices and top quality products with a wide range to offer.
So, what do we love about Rocket Seeds?
Variety is high. Rocket Seeds has excellent selection, offering everything each one of their brands carries. In fact, you can choose among hundreds of varieties of cannabis seeds online on the Rocket Seeds site.
Rocket often carries limited edition strains and new hybrids that you won’t find anywhere else, and both auto-flowering seeds and photoperiodic versions of the same strain. They also carry a lot of the most well-known strains, like Acapulco Gold and White Widow.
Strains sold by Rocket Seeds are also all over the place, from many strains that are perfect for first-time growers and beginner-friendly, to many that are tougher to cultivate and rare. The site also features sections for high THC seeds and high CBD strains and information for medical marijuana growers.
Rocket Seeds does offer a germination guarantee for growers who follow their instructions, so you can have confidence in what you’re buying.
The Rocket Seeds site is user-friendly and easy to navigate. They lay out their extensive range in an organized way, which makes it easier to wade through the amazing assortment of choices. Sort to find what you need by strain type, growth characteristic, or based on other factors.
Rocket Seeds cares about your privacy, with unmarked, stealth shipping options to countries other than Canada being the default.
In Canada, you ’ ll receive your seeds from Rocket Seeds in unique strain packaging and it takes 5-7 business days in North America. Free shipping is only applied to orders over $200. Rocket Seeds accepts multiple payment methods including credit cards, bitcoin, and Paypal.
- Sells huge variety of brands and strains
- World wide shipping
- Good customer support
- No free shipping on smaller orders
- Buying through a middle man can raise the price—sometimes, not always!
5. Sonoma Seeds – Fastest Shipping
Last but not least on our list of best Canadian seed banks is Sonoma Seeds. Sonoma Seeds is based on the West Coast and guarantees truly high-quality products.
What do we love about Sonoma Seeds?
The Sonoma Seeds site delivers a user-friendly experience. The range they offer is extensive and has the potential to be overwhelming, but they have it organized on easy-to-navigate pages in a user-friendly way. This means your job as a grower shopping is more about eliminating great options based on your specific goals, not just figuring out what will work.
We also like the fact that Sonoma Seeds gives you choices across the board. They offer many payment options, including credit cards, cash, money transfers, Interac e-transfer, and different types of cryptocurrencies. Sonoma Seeds ships to you in unmarked packages, and the seeds themselves are sent outside of retail packages.
Focus on organic growing. Sonoma Seeds emphasizes organic growing and offers relevant tips.
Although their selection is not what we would call extensive, Sonoma seeds offers a range of indica, sativa, and hybrid seeds. Their strains range from harder to cultivate and rarer to many beginner-friendly strains that are ideal for first-time growers. You will also find high THC and high CBD seeds.
The company promises safe and secure shipping, and for orders over $200 USD, that shipping is free. It takes 3 to 5 days in Canada and 7 to 14 days in the US, although you do have to pay $20 for express tracking information. Sonoma Seeds accepts money transfer, credit card, bitcoin, Interac and cash for payments.
- Guaranteed 80% germination rate
- Free shipping for orders $200 and over
- Multiple payment options available
- Extra fee for tracking
- No guarantee of resending if seeds don ’ t germinate
- Not as much selection
What Makes a Marijuana Seed High Quality?
The most important seed quality factor is good genetics. This matters as you shop, because less ethical breeders may cross strains randomly and sell whatever seeds they produce doing that without taking all the steps you need to ensure a reliable, stable seed.
A reputable breeder will invest their time in crossing and backcrossing plants to generate many different phenotypes. It takes much more than simply crossing female and male plants to stabilize the most desirable traits of a cannabis cultivar.
It is also critical to store and use seeds as they are intended to ensure seed quality. To avoid mold and other pathogens, store cannabis seeds frozen, or in a cool, dark place for up to 16 months. Cannabis seeds must completely mature before harvest.
How to Check Quality of Marijuana Seeds
Growing cannabis is time-consuming and expensive, so no one wants to go through the entire planting process with seeds that don’t work. In the long run, it’s much easier to learn to tell the difference between bad cannabis seeds and high quality marijuana seeds.
Always inspect how your cannabis seeds look and feel. Some quality issues are easy to detect, although others demand more experience to perceive.
Genetically superior, healthier, mature marijuana seeds have outer shells with darker, grayish colors. Cannabis seeds that are green or pale may germinate slowly, if at all, as they are still immature.
Gently feel the seeds. They should feel firm when you handle them. Ensure they don’t crack, bend, or fold under pressure when you gently squeeze the seeds between your thumb and finger—being buried in soil is similar.
Finally, always opt for fresh, mature cannabis seeds with high-quality, stable, proven genetics.
- Color, Appearance: Avoid immature seeds that are lighter colors such as light green, yellow, and white, and choose viable brown or even black seeds instead.
- Shape and size: Teardrop and round seeds tend to be the best quality.
- Toughness: Look for smooth, non-cracked outer shells.
- Age: Remember, under 16 months in proper cool, dark storage conditions is best, and avoid mold and rot.
- Do the Float Test: Place your seeds in just enough distilled water to see whether they sink after a couple of hours. If they have sufficient bulk to sink, they usually have a better chance of germinating.
Best Cannabis Seeds Banks to Buy From Online: What Should You Look For?
Cannabis Seeds by Gender
Cannabis seeds can be either male or female. Female cannabis plants produce the seeds you need to grow, while the male plants provide fertilization. Cannabis seeds may be feminized seeds or regular seeds.
Regular seeds include both males and females, in about even numbers. This is the best choice if you want more seeds, or for cannabis breeders. But if you just want more blooming plants without the hassle, regular seeds might not be your best option.
Feminized seeds should contain only female cannabis seeds—although a few male seeds can stay behind. This is the best option if you do not like seed reproduction and you just want your seeds to grow, because the majority of the seeds are females so these types of seeds are also easier to germinate.
Cannabis Seeds by Genetics
There are several types of cannabis seeds from a genetic perspective: Indica seeds, Sativa seeds, and Hybrid seeds. Any of these types may be auto-flowering seeds, which are also a bit different genetically.
Indica seeds produce cannabis plants with thick stems, fat leaves, and shorter heights that live well in temperate zones. The buds of these plants contain high THC and CBD levels, making these strains ideal for relaxation.
Sativa seeds grow tall and big, originating in subtropical and tropical climates. Sativa cannabis strains are an excellent option for people who need a boost of energy thanks to their terpenes and high THC and THCV levels.
Hybrid seeds blend of sativa and indica genetics to produce unique cannabis strains that bring the best of both worlds together.
Auto-flowering seeds produce cannabis plants that are non-photoperiod growers. This is possible because they were created in part with Ruderalis genetics, the Cannabis Ruderalis plant demanding less light to flower.
Seed Bank Payment Options
- Online Bank Transfers
- Payment through cash
- Credit Cards
- Debit Cards
Cryptocurrencies like bitcoin are the most popular payment option for buying cannabis seeds. Some seed banks even offer a bitcoin discount.
People also use other payment options including cash, although sending cash in the mail can be dangerous if you don’t use a reputable seed bank.
Can You Legally Ship Cannabis Seeds to the United States?
It is technically legal to buy cannabis seeds online and ship them to the United States if they are legal in the state or country where you’re buying them. However, importing seeds into your home state can be tricky. Be aware of your own state’s law, as the rules vary considerably.
Cannabis seeds cannot cross state lines in the US because marijuana remains illegal under federal law. This means that, although it is rare, people who transport cannabis across state lines can still get federal criminal charges against them—even when they buy and live in legal states.
If you buy cannabis seeds online and they are discovered by Customs and Border Protection (CBP), they will just discard them and not deliver them to you. This highlights the importance of stealth shipping and guarantees; most good seed banks will replace orders that customs discards.
The same is true of reentering the US with cannabis seeds. Even if you fly from, say, Amsterdam, or the recreational cannabis state of Oregon, CBP will seize any cannabis seeds they find because marijuana remains illegal under federal law.
How are Feminized Cannabis Seeds Different from Regular Seeds?
Because cannabis seeds have both male and female parents, any given seed might turn out to be male or female. There is no good way to tell from just inspecting a seed whether it will produce a male or female cannabis plant. In fact, the ideal time to predict a cannabis plant’s future sex is just as it starts flowering.
In general, there is a 66 percent female to male growth ratio among regular marijuana seeds, so it is safe to assume you’ll grow about half and half, male and female plants with regular cannabis seeds.
Feminized cannabis seeds effectively guarantee that each germinated seed becomes a female because they are specifically bred to eliminate male chromosomes. Growers feminize seeds by treating them with colloidal silver solution, or with a germination hormone, or via rodelization, a method of fertilizing a female plant with another female past maturity.
Feminized seeds are shaped like teardrops and have a calyx structure, unlike male seeds. Many growers like feminized seeds because they don’t want to worry about pollination, and they do want to simplify the process and save space and time. Space is a concern for both hobby growers and medical marijuana growers, because most cannabis regulations limit how many plants you can grow.
Although feminized seeds guarantee a no hassle, no seed, all bud harvest every time, more experienced growers often avoid them. This is because they are less useful for breeding, containing just one set of genes.
Remember, if you are growing both males and females, aim to identify them visually early on in the flowering stage—don’t wait too long. The entire crop will be seedy once the males produce pollen. to avoid cross-pollination, retain breeding males in sealed-off places within or near the grow area.
Auto-flowering Seeds Briefly Explained (And why they are the best seeds for beginners)
Growers hoping for speed or beginners often look for autoflowering seeds. This is because they typically deliver excellent results with no light cycle management in only 10 weeks from seed to flower. This makes growing all year long possible, even for new growers.
As the seasons change in autumn the light in the sky drops to around 12 hours a day. This is when most varieties of cannabis start to flower, and why even the indoors light cycle looks like it does.
The species Cannabis ruderalis evolved in regions with far less sunlight. This native of the northern climates flowers once the plant reaches a certain age automatically, and is therefore auto-flowering. Cannabis breeders crossed certain ruderalis varieties with other strains of cannabis to develop auto-flowering seeds.
Obviously, autoflower strains start to flower right when they reach maturity. They are smaller plants overall, and they are far easier to grow, particularly outdoors. They also maximize available summer light naturally, so even after continuous light exposure, they will flower.
Autoflowering seeds are the obvious choice if speed is your goal as a grower. Throw all of these advantages together and you can push multiple auto-flowering crop harvests into the time of one typical cannabis harvest.
However, the drawback of using autoflowering seeds is that their yields are often smaller and less potent. This can be a deal-breaker, particularly for medical growers. And even if you’re just a hobby grower, potency and yield matter if you need to maximize space, and who doesn’t?
What are the laws around growing cannabis in Canada?
You may not sell the cannabis you grow at home to others.
The Cannabis Act permits adults to grow up to 4 cannabis plants per household (not each). The Act also provides security and safety measures for growing cannabis plants that are recommended, not required.
To grow cannabis for sale, you must be licensed by Health Canada. In some cases, a license from the Canada Revenue Agency may also be required. Legal cannabis “products must carry an excise stamp, except those products with less than 0.3% THC or no THC.”
Is it legal to buy Cannabis seeds in Canada? Are there specific laws around seeds?
Yes, it is legal to buy cannabis seeds in Canada, because with the passage of 2018’s Cannabis Act , Canada became the first G7 and G20 nation to legalize cannabis. The Act specifically allows each household to cultivate up to four cannabis plants from “ licensed seed or seedlings.”
So, what does it mean to be “ licensed seed or seedlings”?
It means they come from a provincially or territorially regulated retailer, and you can tell because the package has a stamp on it.
Realistically, can anyone tell where a seed came from once a plant is growing? Maybe not, but they can demand proof of where you got the seeds, so it’s worth noting.
Remember, Manitoba and Quebec are not included in this part of the act and you cannot grow cannabis there.
Frequently Asked Questions
Q: What are High CBD Marijuana Seeds?
A: Cannabidiol (CBD) is one of the many cannabinoids, natural plant compounds, that occurs in cannabis. Many growers choose cannabis strains that offer high-THC content, but today high CBD strains are more and more popular too due to the medical benefits users believe they have.
Q: Is There a Difference Between Medical Cannabis and Recreational Cannabis?
A: Technically there is no real difference between medical cannabis and recreational cannabis when it comes to marijuana seeds, although some seeds may be bred, intended, or marketed that way. Those kinds of distinctions have to do with THC and CBD levels, user intent, and the law, which varies from place to place.
Q: What’s the Difference Between Indoor and Outdoor-Grown Cannabis?
A: You can choose strains of cannabis seeds for indoor and outdoor cultivation depending on your available space.
Outdoor strands thrive best in a natural habitat, and typically are very robust, and grow large. Ideal outdoor cannabis strains to grow from seed should be more resistant to environmental changes and extreme weather issues. Some of our favorite outdoor strains include Northern Lights, Critical Kush, and Blueberry.
If you have less space for growing or you have more ability to manage temperature, humidity levels, and lighting times, indoor marijuana seeds may be your best option. Certain strains are fragile and require more weather control. Overall, these strains do much better inside with lots of TLC. Among indoor strains we love White Widow, Big Bud, and Amnesia.
Can inside strains move outside, and vice versa? No. Outdoor cannabis strains can usually survive inside after making the switch, but it doesn’t work both ways. Cannabis strains that require indoor conditions typically needs to stay inside. And really, so long as your growing area is safe from major fluctuations in environmental conditions and under your control, you should be able to grow any type of cannabis seed.
Q: How Much Do Cannabis Seeds Cost?
A: Typically, cannabis seeds come in packs of 3, 5, 10, or 12 seeds, or sometimes in multiple packs of 5 or 10 seeds. Expect to start at around $4 a seed, although there is a lot of range here.
It can cost hundreds of dollars for a package of seeds with specialty or high-end genetics. Auto-flowering seeds and feminized seed also typically cost more, because they produce more reliably and quickly, and because it demands more work to produce them.
Q: What seed bank has the best genetics?
A: Seed banks offer cannabis with different genetics, so there is no definitive answer to this question. However, our top recommended seed bank that ships to Canada is Crop Kings Seeds .
Q: Are seed banks legit?
A: Seed banks are definitely legit—you just need to know which ones to use and be aware of scams. All of the online seed banks we recommend in this article are legit.
Q: Are there any seed banks in the United States?
A: Yes. And many seed banks outside the US ship here.
Q: Is it legal to buy cannabis seeds?
A: Probably—but that depends on where you are. Check your local laws before ordering.
Final Thoughts on How to Buy Marijuana Seeds
Whether you need to improve the genetics of what you are already growing or you are hoping to grow from the very best fine cannabis seeds, buying quality cannabis seeds is one of the best things you can do for yourself. Growing your own amazing crop exactly how you want it to be is an amazing accomplishment that pays you back big time.
Many online cannabis seed banks can be disappointing or even fraudulent, so it is essential to start in the right place. The ones on this list are all high-quality, legit seed banks that ship to Canada.
It isn’t easy to weed through bad businesses and outright scams to identify great service and quality products. Guide your search in the right direction with this list of the best Canadian seed banks. All of the Canadian seed banks we recommended offer high quality products, and the best Canadian seed bank is Crop King Seeds .
Bag Seeds and What to Expect of Them
Is it a good idea to grow cannabis from bag seeds? Will the final product be potent enough? Are you going to get feminized or regular plants? We give answers to these and other questions.
Novice growers keep asking questions about bag seeds all the time. A girl I know has recently fired at me a series of questions that she thought no one would ever answer. I’m sure at least some of you have been as puzzled by these questions as her. Here it goes:
I’ve been asking everyone about these bag weed seeds, and no one can explain this to me. Because I swear to God I can’t understand it myself. If the buds haven’t been pollinated, then the seeds should be sterile. But they aren’t! I’ve germinated one such seed myself, and it was growing fine.
If the buds HAVE been pollinated, then why the f… they are making me high?!
And if it was a feminized plant, is it normal for feminized plants to produce seeds?
Questions like these made me realize that people don’t grasp the concept of bag seeds. Moreover, there is a fundamental lack of understanding of how and why cannabis plants produce seeds. Can all of them be grown? Are all of them worth growing? How different types of seeds (feminized, autoflowering, regular, hermies, etc.) fit into the picture? In this post, I’ll try to bring clarity to these issues.
Table of Contents
Bag Seeds Meaning
Suppose you buy some buds in a ‘bag’ (a zip lock). You expect the buds to be high quality which means—among other things—that they’ll be without seeds. The buds really do look, smell and taste great, and make you high, too. However, when grinding them, you find a seed or two. And this is what we call ‘bag seeds’.
Will Bag Seeds Grow?
Most seeds you find in a zip lock will definitely grow. For plants, seeds are a means of reproduction. They aren’t just for show. Of course, there are sterile or infertile seeds in other crops that have been artificially modified, but not in cannabis. So these seeds grow like any other: they germinate, they sprout, they get bigger, and then you see your bag seeds flowering as any other type of marijuana would.
This is because the presence of seeds always means that there has been some natural pollination. Either there was some undetected male somewhere near the grow, or there were some stray male pollen sacks in female buds. The latter occurs much more often because female plants often grow a few male flowers due to stress (so called hermies, or hermaphrodites). But, no matter where the pollen has come from, the pollination leads to the production of seeds, and these seeds are fertile.
So, if you ask yourself: “Can I grow bag seeds?”, the answer is always ‘yes’. Can bag seeds grow good weed? Well, it’s another question. Read on.
Are Bag Seeds Worth Growing?
Growing unknown bag seeds is always a toss of a coin. Even if you like the buds in which you have found these seeds, it doesn’t mean you’ll get the same quality. Let’s put it this way: you’ve now met the mother (the buds you’ve just smoked), but you don’t know anything about the father (the source of pollen). It may have been outstanding, it may have been mediocre, or it may have been the most worthless ditch weed that grows in your area.
And don’t forget that the father could also have been another mother (a hermaphrodite plant). So do bag seeds work? Yes, they do. Are bag seeds any good? Well, this depends on the quality of both parents, and you simply don’t have enough information.
Having said that, a bag seed can be a real gem. You probably have heard stories of first rate strains that have been bred from seeds found in a bag of buds. One example is the famous Cinderella. It would be an irreparable loss for the marijuana growing community if the breeders of this masterpiece simply sneered at those seeds and threw them away.
Bag Seeds vs Seeds Bought in a Seed Shop
If you simply want to grow yourself some good bud and expect reliable results, by all means buy your beans online from a reputable seed shop.
The reasons to grow weed from bag seeds are very few:
- if you suspect that your bag seeds could be amazing and feel lucky (because you’ll need PLENTY of luck),
- when your budget is strained to spend any money on seeds,
- if you want to grow a lot plants outdoors in the cheapest way possible.
What we don’t recommend is growing bag seeds indoors. With the cost of the setup and electricity bills and what not, the money you spend on seeds is arguably the least significant expense item.
Some Questions about the Genetics
If you have read carefully what we have said above, you’ve already guessed that bag seeds, like any other type of weed seeds, can be really anything (in terms of their genetics). But, for clarity’s sake, let’s answer any specific questions that you might have.
Are Bag Seeds Feminized?
Whether the seeds found in buds are feminized or not depends on the source of the pollination. If the pollen was from a male plant, the seeds will be regular, meaning that the ratio of male to female plants will be around 50/50. But if the source of the pollen were male flowers (hermies) from the same plant or another female/hermie plant in the garden, the resulting bag seeds are feminized. Please note that such seeds are also very prone to become hermies if you subject them to stress.
Obviously, the only way to tell if your bags seeds are feminized or regular is to grow and flower them.
Are All Bag Seeds Hermies?
Most female plants can become hermies if you subject them to stress. It all depends on the amount of stress needed before you see male flowers in your female buds. If the buds have been pollinated by a male (see above), they will show more stability. If they have been pollinated by a hermie, watch out because even the least amount of stress can make such plants ‘turn to the dark side’.
On average, bag seeds are way less stable than store-bought seeds.
Can Bag Seeds be Autoflower?
If both parents were autos, the seeds are 100% autoflowering, too. The same if an autoflower self-pollinated itself (see our experiment where we produced our own feminized seeds by self-pollination using colloidal silver).
Is it Normal for Fem Plants to Produce Seeds?
Fem plants produce seeds just like any other type of plant (if you pollinate them). It doesn’t matter whether you have grown a plant from fem seeds or regular. Neither type is infertile. Of course, bud growers do everything they can to produce buds without seeds, but shit happens, doesn’t it?
Can Buds With Seeds Make You High?
The potency of buds is a matter of genetics, and not of whether the buds have been pollinated or not. Of course, buds with seeds have inferior quality because a pollinated plant directs all its energy to seed production and not resin production. Seeded buds are smaller, have less resin glands and lower levels of THC, but they DO make you high nevertheless. With many seeds, the quality is significantly worse. With a few, you’ll probably see no difference.
This is it. We hope we have answered all your questions. If not, don’t be shy to ask in comments.