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How To Identify Female Seeds

Can you tell the difference between male and female marijuana seeds by looking? The short answer is no. While there are some popular tips and tricks from the internet that claim to be able to tell the difference between male and female weed seeds, ultimately visual clues are nothing more than coincidences. 

What does a cannabis seed look like?

Weed seeds look like seeds. They’re small ovals with a point at one end and a flat side at the other end. Cannabis seeds are brown, but they can vary from light to dark brown. Sometimes seeds have a tiger-striping pattern, but not always. White cannabis seeds indicate immaturity. 

Nature loves variety, and cannabis seeds are not perfectly uniform. Seed genetics influence the color, shape, and size of the seed. Cannabis plants grow female seeds and male seeds in equal amounts and female weed seeds look like male seeds.

What are female seeds? Only female cannabis plants grow buds (nugs), and female seeds are responsible for growing female plants.

what cannabis seeds look like
Male and female seeds look exactly the same

Is it possible to identify cannabis seed gender by appearance?

No, it is not possible to identify a male vs female seed with 100% certainty. 

Some people swear you can tell the difference between male and female seeds by looking at the depression on the flat end of the seed, or by rolling seeds across a table. Others claim you can tell the difference by the color of the seed, but all of these methods are nothing more than coincidences. 

the screenshot from our poll about the determining of sex of cannabis seeds
The data reflects ambiguity in the consensus regarding physical cues for gender identification in cannabis seeds within the horticulture sector A slight majority lean towards skepticism or uncertainty suggesting a potential gap in shared knowledge or conclusive evidence within the community This aligns with scientific literature indicating that seed morphology is not a reliable indicator of plant sex necessitating germination for accurate determination
Total Yes No Not sure
500 121 111 268
317 72 71 174
183 49 40 94


Debunking myths about difference between male and female weed seeds

While it’s true that it’s possible to determine the gender of cannabis plants before they start flowering, it’s impossible to guarantee with 100% certainty whether a cannabis seed you are holding in your hand is male or female. Despite popular myths suggesting otherwise, the gender of a cannabis plant ultimately reveals itself not sooner than in the pre-flowering stage. Therefore, while techniques can provide clues, it’s not foolproof, and there’s always a level of uncertainty. There are a few common myths about how to tell if a marijuana seed is male or female that I’m going to debunk

You can tell seed sex by the depression at the seeds bottom: not true

This popular internet myth comes from this chart, included below. The chart claims that you can tell the difference between seed sex because females have a perfectly round depression while males have a lopsided or ragged depression. While this may be the case for some seeds, it is not uniformly true and cannot be taken at face value. It’s a relic from the early days of the internet, probably just created as a prank to mess with folks trying to learn about growing their own cannabis. Despite being debunked countless times on various forums, it’s surprising to see it still circulating online.

the chart showcasing how to determine a female seed

Female seeds will roll and males will not: not true

The same chart also claims that female seeds will readily roll when dropped onto a surface while males will not – but this is also patently false. If determining the gender of cannabis seeds was as straightforward as some myths suggest, there wouldn’t be a need for feminized seeds, as growers could simply visually inspect and sort regular seeds by sex with methods like rolling them across a table. However, in reality, the process is more complex and unpredictable, leading to the necessity for feminized seeds in the market.

Female seeds are bigger than males (or vice versa): not true

You cannot determine the sex of a cannabis seed by its size. One growing forum will tell you female seeds are larger than males while the next will tell you they’re smaller. Size is not an indicator of sex. 

Female seeds are shaped differently than males: not true

Nature loves variety and while cannabis seeds are usually an oval shape, they are not uniform. Female seeds are not shaped differently or distinctively over male seeds, and shape should not be taken as an indicator of sex. 

The environment determines the sex of the seed: not true

A fertilized female cannabis plant will produce a roughly equal amount of male and female marijuana seeds. While you can stress your plant into producing feminized seeds, environmental factors won’t give you more male than female seeds or vice versa. 

Feminization is the only way to ensure female seeds 

The only way to truly ensure that you don’t have any male plants mixed into your grow is to use feminized seeds. Feminized seeds have a 99% success rate of producing female plants, the best guarantee a grower can get. 

If you enjoy growing, you can feminize cannabis plants at home and make your own feminized seeds. We have a step-by-step guide on how to make feminized seeds and how to feminize with colloidal silver at home that is easy for you to follow. But feminizing your own seeds requires chemicals and a little bit of chemistry class, and the easiest way to get feminized seeds is to buy them from a trusted seed bank. 

Buy feminized seeds from trusted seed bank

If you want feminized seeds with top-tier genetics, large yields, and dank flowers, then you’ve come to the right place. The Seed Fair was founded by cannabis growers with over 20 years of growing experience, identifying the most stable genetics, finding the best seeds, and growing resinous plants. 

I highly recommend exploring The Seed fair’s selection of the TOP 20 feminized seeds, renowned for their potency and high yields. The team meticulously curated this list to feature only the best of the best.

We use stringent quality control practices to ensure that only the best seeds are sent out so you have the easiest growing experience possible. With a germination guarantee on our 1,200+ seeds and free shipping, you can grow with confidence. 

cannabis seeds gender


We surveyed 500 growers to find out which method they considered most reliable for determining the sex of cannabis seeds. Surprisingly, 23.2% of respondents still believe that identifying a female seed is possible simply by visual inspection. However, it’s important to note that there is no scientific evidence supporting the reliability of this method.

the screenshot from our poll "Which of the following methods of determining the sex of cannabis seeds do you find the most reliable?"

What does a female weed seed look like? The same as a male. In short, if you want to know how to tell if marijuana seeds are male or female, you have to grow them to find out. There is no way to visually tell the difference between male and female seeds with 100% accuracy – it’s a lucky guess at best. If you want a guarantee of a female plant, buy feminized seeds. 

FAQ section

Is it possible to determine cannabis gender before flowering?

Yes, cannabis plants will show their gender before they enter the flowering phase if you know what to look for. Female seeds grow flowers while male plants grow pollen sacks. These sacks begin to develop towards the end of the vegetative phase so keep an eye out for them at the nodes of the plant, or where the leaves and branches meet. 

Can someone guarantee only female plants? 

No, no one can guarantee 100% only female plants. Feminized seeds offer a 99% guarantee, which is the best you can get. 

Can feminized seeds turn male? 

Yes, feminized seeds from poor genetics or under stressful growing conditions can turn male or hermaphroditic. If you notice a feminized plant developing pollen sacks, isolate it from the rest of your grow. Do not use the pollen sacs on female plants as they will carry on unstable genetics.