Rhode Island became the 11th state to legalize medical marijuana in 2006. In 2009, the state introduced the nation’s second medical marijuana dispensary system. Despite widespread approval of medical marijuana and poll results indicating that nearly 60% of Rhode Island residents support legalizing recreational marijuana use, the state continues to sport some of the country’s strictest laws regarding large-scale cannabis possession.
The ongoing ban on recreational use hasn’t stopped Rhode Island from making reasonable provisions for medical marijuana patients. Those suffering from qualifying conditions such as cancer, epilepsy, glaucoma, and Alzheimer’s disease can possess up to 2.5 oz of dried cannabis and cultivate up to 12 mature plants and 12 seedlings. This article will provide information about buying cannabis seeds for those Rhode Island residents who have medical marijuana cards.
Most modern consumers purchase a lot of their specialty goods online, and cannabis seeds are no exception. Buying from an online retailer like i49 gives Rhode Island cannabis growers a wide selection of strains to choose from and a guarantee that they’ll receive quality seeds with a high germination rate. It also gives them the chance to purchase feminized seeds, avoiding the complications and crop losses associated with weeding out male plants.
Before discussing different strains of marijuana, it’s worth noting that there are also several types of seeds available. They include regular cannabis seeds, feminized seeds, and auto-flower seeds.
When growers buy regular cannabis seeds, they can expect to get a mix of male and female plants. Only the female plants will produce cannabis flowers, so it’s important to check the plants as they enter the pre-flowering stage and remove any male plants for the mix. Failing to remove all the male plants will cause female plants to go to seed instead of developing large, aromatic flower buds for smoking.
The primary benefit of purchasing regular cannabis seeds is that they haven’t been genetically or chemically altered. Organic growers often opt for regular seeds. Novice marijuana growers may find that the difficulty of identifying male and female plants outweighs the benefit of going natural, though.
Seed suppliers often offer what are known as feminized seeds. These seeds are produced by plants that have been altered using a process called Rodelization to ensure that they do not produce male or hermaphrodite plants. Buying feminized seeds allows growers to increase their yields and prevent potentially costly mistakes in identifying male and female seeds.
Normal cannabis plants rely on light to determine when the time is right to enter the flowering cycle. Auto-flowers don’t follow this natural cycle, though. Instead, they begin flowering when they reach a certain maturity level.
Auto-flowers are great for beginning cultivators and indoor growers since they require less management outdoors and can be provided with an ongoing light source to maximize yield indoors. They also tend to flower earlier than normal seeds, allowing growers to harvest their crops sooner.
The most important factor for those who don’t have substantial experience using medical marijuana to keep in mind is the difference between Sativa, Indica, and Hybrid strains. Many medical patients also look for strains that are high in cannabidiol, or CBD.
Sativa strains are good for treating conditions that involve chronic fatigue, pain, or headaches. They’re known for producing an energizing high and are typically consumed during the day. Popular Sativa strains include:
Indica strains are best used at night. Patients who struggle with insomnia, chronic pain, muscle tension, anxiety, or lack of appetite will all appreciate the extra relaxation and comfort conferred by Indica strains. Commonly grown Indica strains include:
Hybrid strains combine some of the best qualities from both Indica and Sativa plants, making them excellent at treating chronic pain without causing fatigue. Some good Hybrid strains for Rhode Island include:
Medical patients often prefer to grow cannabis strains that contain more CBD. Unlike THC, the better-known component of marijuana, CBD does not have a psychoactive component. It does, however, confer a number of health benefits, including reduction of pain, inflammation, nausea, anxiety, migraines, and even seizures. Popular high-CBD strains include:
Regardless of what strain of cannabis growers are trying to cultivate, the process starts with germination. Germinating seeds is actually a pretty straightforward process. Just submerge the seeds in distilled water, leave them to soak for 14 to 18 hours, then fold them in a wet paper towel until the seeds produce taproots at least ¾” long.
If a taproot has not begun to grow in two to seven days, marijuana cultivators may need to perform an additional step. Just remove the seeds from the paper towel and re-submerge them in distilled water. Leave them there until the taproot begins to form.
Medical marijuana is legal in Rhode Island, but that doesn’t mean it’s a free-for-all. Patients with qualifying conditions who have been approved for medical marijuana prescriptions and their caregivers still need to follow Rhode Island laws regarding marijuana cultivation. Patients or their designated caregivers must apply for plant tags through the state for each cannabis plant under cultivation.
Medical marijuana patients can save a lot of money by growing their own plants. Those who choose to germinate seeds and cultivate plants online can also take more control over their treatment, choosing what strains they want to cultivate based on their proven benefits in relieving symptoms. Regardless of what strains of cannabis patients choose and what type of seeds they buy, it’s important to find a reliable supplier and follow all state laws governing medical marijuana cultivation.