The difference between feminized and autoflowering seeds

Growing Information

Growing cannabis is pretty easy. Anyone can do it. It is as simple as maintaining a home plant in your living room. Yet, when you are planning to start growing weed for the first time a lot of questions will pop-up. Especially when you see new words such as feminized and autoflowering while gaining information about growing. 

When it comes to growing, two seed types are very popular: feminized seeds and autoflowering seeds. The similarities between feminized and autoflowering are the plants ability to develop female plants and produce buds which you can smoke, vape, eat, juice or make oil from. But what is the difference between feminized and autoflowering seeds and which one is best for you?

To get the answers we strongly advise you to keep on reading. Besides the differences we also explain the advantages and disadvantages of feminized and autoflower seeds so you can make a well-considered decision.

Difference between feminized and autoflower seeds

Want to have a quick overview of the differences between autoflower and feminized species? Use the table below. 

GrowingVery easyEasy to moderate
Plant heightSmall – mediumMedium – tall
Starts to flower2 – 4 weeks after plantingWhen receiving 12 hours light and 12 hours darkness
Average time from seed to harvest8 – 12 weeks 12 – 20 weeks
YieldLow – mediumMedium – large

Feminized seeds

Feminized cannabis seeds are seeds specially bred to eliminate male chromosomes. In short: with feminized seeds you grow a female plant. Exactly what most growers want and very understandable when knowing that only the female cannabis plant grows smokable buds. In addition and compared to male plants, female plants develop significantly more active substances such as THC and CBD.

The strain will start to flower when receiving less sunlight. This is towards the end of the summer and the transition into autumn. Indoor growers will have to mimic autumn by (gradually) adjusting their light scheme to a 12/12 light scheme.

Although adjusting the light scheme isn’t difficult, it does require some knowledge.

Benefits of feminized seeds

  • Feminized seeds develop female plants and and grow smokable weed
  • Feminized seeds are almost 100% free of hermaphrodites
  • Female plants grown with feminized seeds develop bigger yields compared to autoflowers
  • Plants from feminized seeds produce fewer leaves compared to autoflowers
  • In contrast to autoflowers, female plants grown with feminized seeds are easier to prune

Tip: check all our feminized seeds

Autoflower seeds

In addition to feminized seeds, a lot of newcomers opt for autoflower seeds. Autoflower seeds have a lot of the same characteristics as feminized seeds. Yet, there are important differences to be recognized.

Where feminized seeds begin to flower as soon as they receive less sunlight (or artificial light) an autoflower will start to flower based on age. For this, the grower doesn’t have to adjust the lighting schedule or wait for the arrival of autumn. Growing an autoflower is therefore much easier than a female plant from feminized seeds.

Benefits of feminized autoflower seeds

  • Autoflowers bloom automatically 
  • Like feminized seeds, autoflower seeds develop female plants and develop consumable cannabis.
  • The cycle from seed to harvest is short which make outdoor growers able to harvest 2-4 times a year when growing outdoors
  • Because autoflower species are crossed with the ruderalis plant the plant becomes less tall and requires less maintenance.
  • Compared to female plants grown with feminized seeds, autoflowers are more resistant to temperature fluctuations, pests and mold.

Tip: check our autoflowering seeds

What is better: feminized or autoflower?

The answer to this question depends on your requirements. Moderate to experienced growers are more likely to opt for feminized seeds. This has several reasons. Yields are generally better and of higher quality. In addition, plants derived from feminized seeds allow various breeding and training methods such as scrog and topping so with feminized seeds the grower is more flexible. Beginners who grow for the first time and growers who are looking for a quick result rather opt for autoflower seeds. 

Tip: check all our healty cannabis seeds