If you find plants around your home that look similar to the marijuana plant in the photo, someone in your household is trying to grow their own weed. The plants have changed considerably in recent decades as they have been bred to produce more buds.
Forty-four percent of all students have tried weed by 12th grade according to the National Institutes of Health. That means that your child probably has friends who are smoking marijuana or at least know someone who is.
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It may be that your child has experimented with marijuana use or tried it a couple of times with their friends. That happens a lot more these days than it may have happened when you were in school.
If you see this many marijuana plants growing indoors, you have stumbled upon a major indoor marijuana grow operation. Leave the scene immediately and call 9-1-1 if it is not a legal operation.
First of all, don’t over-react. Before you force your child into a professional drug treatment program that you may not be able to afford and they may not even need, take a step back and try to evaluate the situation.
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Parents may want to know what marijuana looks like in all stages of development and use. See photos that can help you check what you find at home.
- Indica: Indica-leaning weed plants tend to produce dense, fat, heavy buds during the flowering stage. These strains are typically believed to give consumers a “body high” instead of a more cerebral high.
- Sativa: Sativa plants tend to produce buds that are airy and more formed than indica plants. Sativa strains of the weed plant are often said to offer users a more cerebral, energetic, “buzzy” highs.
- Hybrid: As a blend of sativa and indica, hybrid strains are generally believed to give you a more balanced high.
- Hemp: Hemp plants are part of the cannabis family, but they differ from a regular weed plant in that they produce only trace amounts of THC, the cannabinoid responsible for the intoxicating effects of the marijuana plant. In the U.S., the 2018 Farm Bill specified hemp as a cannabis plant containing up to 0.3% THC. However, hemp plants produce a number of other important cannabinoids, most notably cannabidiol (CBD), and their fibers are used to produce a range of textiles.
- Cloning : Cloning is a popular method, as it allows you to get multiple baby plants from a single adult plant, without having to buy seeds or go through the longer process of germinating, planting, and growing a weed plant from seed. To clone a marijuana plant, carefully cut a branch away from the stem right at the node. From there, place the cutting into a growing medium, typically either suspended in water or inserted into a starter plug. When the cutting develops roots you can then transplant it into a larger container or the ground, depending on where you’re going to be growing the plant.
- Seeds: Growing from seed requires you to start from scratch, and is ideally suited to growers who are novices, growers who want to produce a new type or strain than what they’re already growing, and growers who don’t have a plant they want to replicate exactly. To grow a weed plant from seed, place a seed in some sort of starting medium such as rockwool or peat pellets and keep it moist until it sprouts. As the sprout develops leaves and roots, it will start requiring more and more light. When a decent little ball of roots has formed, transplant the baby marijuana plant to a larger container or the ground and proceed to feed, water, and ventilate it until the weed plant reaches maturity.
Cannabis grows in a variety of climates around the world and can be used in many applications: rope, biofuel, paper, and many medical and recreational uses. (Photo by: Gina Coleman/Weedmaps)
Along with understanding the various parts of a marijuana plant, you should also know about the different types of cannabis. While there are long-held claims about the effects that sativas, indicas, and hybrids offer, current research suggests that the effects of cannabis are determined by a person’s endocannabinoid system and the plant-specific cannabinoid profile.
Marijuana trichomes are hairlike appendages found on the surface of the cannabis plant. Trichomes protect the plant from external stressors and contain resinous glands that create flavonoids, cannabinoids and terpenes — the chemical compounds that give the marijuana plant its unique features and effects. Trichomes give cannabis buds a crystal-like sheen and make them sticky feeling.
The point at which the stem and leaf intersect. Nodes can hold one or more leaves or offshoots. As explained below, nodes are important to be familiar with, as they are where cannabis plants begin to grow either pollen sacs (male cannabis plants) or pistils (female cannabis plants). Understanding the sex of a marijuana plant is crucial to the final product, since only female plants produce flowers and since non-pollinated flowers are far superior than pollinated buds when it comes to consumption.
- Though you’ve likely handled dried, cured cannabis buds, it’s rare for someone outside of cultivation circles to handle a whole cannabis plant, let alone know its many parts and their functions.
- One component, “sugar leaves,” get their name from the high volume of trichomes they present that resemble sugar.
- The stem provides a foundation to give fan leaves access to the light they need to facilitate growth and carries the weight of the heavy cola(s), among other functions.
- Becoming familiar with the parts of a marijuana plant is vital for selecting the right type and strain of weed you want to consume, and for propagating and growing your own marijuana plants.
- If you want to get to know cannabis better, be sure to get to know the dynamic pieces that go into the composition and structure of the plant itself.
Many breeders produce seeds that are feminized as a way to avoid male genetics. These feminized seeds only carry female genetics, and in most cases, is guaranteed to produce female plants. Another option is to grow auto-flowering strains, which are genetically engineered to automatically flower after a brief vegetative period of two to four weeks.
Despite that, cannabis is typically classified in the following four categories:
The cannabis plant has many different parts to it. Learn about the cola, calyx, trichomes and more.