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Pheno Hunting

Pheno Hunting | What is Pheno Hunting? | GrowHigher

What is Pheno Hunting? Pheno Hunting Definition

Pheno hunting is the process of inspecting all the phenotypes (seeds) from a female cannabis plant after fertilization. The goal is to hunt for desirable phenotypes, such as those with a shorter growth cycle or higher concentrations of cannabinoids. Pheno hunting is only necessary for cannabis breeders. Those who grow cannabis for consumption don’t need to worry about hunting phenotypes since the females won’t produce fertilized seeds. 

Tips and Tricks for Pheno Hunting

One of the primary challenges with breeding cannabis is that each fertilized phenotype will contain a mixture of genetic material from both parent plants. As with people, these mixtures can vary greatly, even within the same crop. It’s akin to a couple having children with different colored hair and body types, all thanks to recessive and dominant genes within each parent. 

  • Know Your Objectives – Are you trying to grow strains with higher concentrations of THC or CBD? Do you want plants that grow fast and small or take longer and grow more buds? Knowing what kinds of phenotypes you want will help you in your search. 
  • Label Everything – Breeding is a complicated and time-consuming process that can get confusing if you’re not organized. Be sure to label each seed as you search for desirable phenotypes. Otherwise, it’s impossible to tell which plants came from which seeds. 
  • Group Similar Phenotypes – The best way to ensure consistency across generations is back-crossing the seeds with the parent plants. However, if multiple phenotypes show similar characteristics, you can breed them together to remove any unwanted traits. Grouping these phenotypes can speed up the breeding process. 

Can You Breed Cannabis Without Pheno Hunting? 

Yes, if you don’t care about consistency between generations. However, if you’re breeding cannabis to sell buds to consumers, you need to identify and reproduce the most desirable phenotypes. Otherwise, it’s much harder to know what side effects each new batch will bring, and some of them could be undesirable, leading to unhappy customers. 

Related Glossary Terms for Pheno Hunting

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