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Grow Q&A: My Pot Plants Are Hermaphrodites! Now What?

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Dear Dan,
I’m a newbie and on my second attempt on growing my own. I read up on just about everything I can find online regarding growing cannabis, but one thing I can never find is information regarding early signs a plant may have hermied (if anything is available). There is plenty of information online that show when it is obvious, but is there anything available that shows a newbie person such as myself early warning signs or does one just have to monitor closely daily until there is a pollen sac visible? I’m curious because my last attempt at growing my own all hermied, all four plants, they were into the fifth week of 12/12 and looked like everything was going great until I found the pollen sac and what really shocked me was how many there were that I didn’t see when it came time to destroy the plants. 

This time around, I’m only growing two and so far things appear to be going alright from what I can see. I don’t know, maybe I’m just being paranoid, but then again it doesn’t hurt to ask either. I look forward to hearing back with any advice you may have. — Marcel

Dear Marcel,

The only way to find early signs of hermaphrodism is eternal vigilance. Get yourself a loupe or some kind of magnifying device, and check out your flowering plants daily. This will also help you notice if there are any issues with pests or molds as well. Look for tiny yellow spikes poking out of your flowers and at the nodes where your leaves meet the stem.

You then have to make the decision whether to try to pluck them out as you find them, or trash the plants and start over with more stable genetics. My advice is the latter to avoid seeding out your entire garden. Hopefully, lab testing will soon be available that can “root out” hermies early in their development.

Don’t miss our previous Grow Q&A: What Is The Best Air Temperature for My Pot Plants?

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