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homogeneous cannabis seeds

Varieties like Orient Express (Ace Seeds), Red Afro (Tropical Seeds) or Eddy from Original Delicatessen would be good examples of true F1 hybrid. Thus, we refer to the first filial generation of any cross as an F1, while the term “F1 hybrid” is used when the parents are different landrace or IBLs.

There is a big difference between acquiring a second filial generation (F2) or an IBL, even if we talk about seeds of the same variety. These differences will condition the growth pattern of the plants, and also the final product, so that it is almost essential to learn exactly what is the meaning of these acronyms to be more accurate in choosing which seeds to buy, saving ourselves deceptions and getting closer to our preferences.

Backcrossing is a common technique used by breeders to fix certain traits. This is done by crossing one of the progeny (F1, F2…) with one of the original parents (recurrent parent) which has the desired trait. To have an even more stable expression of the desirable trait, you can cross the BX1 again with the recurrent parent to have a BX2 (squaring) and so on with BX3 (cubing), BX4, BX5.

IBL or stabilized cannabis hybrids

Tropimango by Philosopher Seeds

How to create a polyhybrid

If we make a cross between two different landrace or IBL lines (parental A and B) with different genotypes, the resulting offspring will be the F1 hybrid, the first filial generation from the cross of the phenotype #1 (Parent A) with the phenotype #2 (Parent B). Commonly in this kind of crosses we will observe a very uniform offspring, depending on how stable the parents are, of course. The F1 hybrid between two pure varieties or IBL’s will show the so-called hybrid vigour – also known as heterosis or outbreeding enhancement – introducing new genes that will produce “better” specimens.

The IBL acronym (in-bred line), means that the cross was made using plants with almost identical genotype (inbreeding). On the contray, outbreeding is employed to introduce new genes into the variety. Although it happens naturally, self-pollination is a common technique used by breeders to fix desirable traits and thus stabilise the genetic line, either with landraces or hybrids. In cannabis genetics IBL seeds should present a highly uniform growth. Classic IBL examples are Skunk and Northern Lights (Sensi Seeds) or White Widow (Greenhouse). There is a lot of work behind IBL’s like these, as a large population of pure specimens had to be used to select the correct parents. In addition, the breeder must fight against inbreeding depression, the result of crossing parents with very similar genetic information. The reward for this job made properly is a highly stable seed variety.

Homozygous breeding over a number of generations can refine a new strain splendidly. However, it does have its risks. As with animals, too much inbreeding can cause genetic depression. This is a lack of genetic diversity than can be detrimental to the overall health and sustainability of the strain.

A stable genetic like Skunk #1, for example, spontaneously produced the unique Cheese strain with no input from the growers. The particular seed recombined the DNA in a novel way that was outside the expected phenotypic variations. So don’t be bummed if you get some radical variations. You might stumble on the next big thing!

If you are keen to breed your own strains of cannabis, then you are going to need to know how to stabilize the seed stock. Stabilizing a strain means it becomes homogeneous, and any seed from that strain will breed true. Classically, landraces are stable. A seed from one plant will grow the same way as another seed from another plant from the same crop.

RISKS OF INBREEDING DEPRESSION

Remember, this is across all the seeds produced. A random selection of four seeds will not necessarily produce the predicted variations. They may all be of one pheno or another.

The same occurs with marijuana. A batch of stable hybrid seeds can produce a plant resembling a grandparent or original landrace, the same way a redhead might happen here and there in a family with very few redheads in their genealogy. This is rare and can be an inconvenience or a boon.

Crossbreeding between four selected males and females can produce 10,000 different combinations of the targeted hybrid. These variations can be very subtle, and it is the master eye that distinguishes heroes from zeroes.

Desirable dominant traits can be isolated and undesirable traits are gradually eliminated. Unstable parent stock risks producing heterozygous offspring. There is a risk of greater variation, and undesirable, unpredictable traits can emerge.