Do you grow? Smoke? Vape? Enjoy cannabis? Consume cannabis in any way?
No matter how deep your connection is with marijuana, you should know the basics of cannabis cultivation and genetics. This article is the third post in the series, The Ultimate Guide to Understanding Cannabis Strains. Join us as we take a look at the humble pie of cannabis breeds, ruderalis.
Get to Know the Underdog Cannabis Breed: Ruderalis
When it comes to cannabis breeds, indica and sativa get all the fame. You might not even realise that the third type of marijuana exists – cannabis ruderalis (c.ruderalis).
Debate ensues among botanists whether c.ruderalis is considered its own separate species, or a subspecies. As such, not every single source in the cannabis sector will list ruderalis among the other cannabis types according to the author of The Cannabis Encyclopedia and expert cultivator, Jorge Cervantes.
Where Did Cannabis Ruderalis Come From?
First off, let’s start with the word itself. Ruderalis. The name of this cannabis classification comes from the root word, ruderal. In the world of botany, a ruderal species is the reference given to a plant that grows even though its habitat is infiltrated by humans or ridden by naturally-occurring disturbances to its ecosystem.
How Auto-Flowering Genetics Gained Popularity for Cannabis Ruderalis
Want to know the trick to the easiest cultivation of marijuana? Whether you are new to growing or just looking for an easy way to grow cannabis plants, auto-flowering strains of marijuana make a great place to start.
Growing Cannabis Ruderalis
Less hassle. Less stress. More peace of mind.
Cannabis ruderalis has auto-flowering properties which do not require an alteration in the light cycle in to stimulate flowering. Ease of cultivation, which is great for any beginner, has drawn a demand for strains of cannabis sativa and indica crossed with ruderalis to produce this desirable trait.
Short in stature and compact, most strains of cannabis ruderalis stay relatively small which makes them ideal for growing indoors and for marijuana growers who prefer to keep their operations on the down low.
How long does it take to grow cannabis ruderalis marijuana strains?
From a seed to a fully-matured plant in just a blink of an eye, auto-flowering strains of cannabis grow incredibly fast and will produce full flowers in as little as two months.
Light is what typically activates the full maturity and flowering cycle of any indica or sativa variety plant.
Ruderalis hybrid marijuana plants typically flower between 21 and 30 days after the seeds were planted, no matter what type of light pattern the marijuana plant is exposed to.
Examining the Roots of Cannabis Ruderalis
Possessing a certain mystique to its existence, the actual origins of cannabis ruderalis are technically unknown. Cannabis ruderalis is believed to have descended from indica genetics which originated in northern regions with shorter growing seasons throughout parts of:
- Central/Eastern Europe
It’s in these regions that hemp plants that grow outside of human cultivation are called “ruderalis” by botanists, and they possess characteristics, such as auto-flowering, that allow them to grow and thrive apart from human cultivation within the extreme climates found in these regions. As such, ruderalis has long been considered a wild breed of cannabis. In recent years, hybrid varieties have been spawned from ruderalis in the indoor cultivation, hybridization scene.
What Do Cannabis Ruderalis Plants Look Like?
Cannabis ruderalis plants are short with stalkier leaves than their counterparts’ (the difference is quite noticeable when comparing it directly to cannabis indica or sativa). When the plants are harvested at full maturation, they’ve often reach between 0.3 and 0.8 meters tall.
The leaf patterns on cannabis ruderalis plants feature wide leaflets that are typically light green in colour. Buds flowering off the ruderalis cannabis plants are dense and chunky with thick, strong stems supporting their structures.
What are the Effects of Cannabis Ruderalis?
Outweighing the fact that the plant’s tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) levels are low, cannabis ruderalis maintains its position as a desirable choice for cannabis cultivators because of its versatility and accelerated growth cycles along with its ability to auto-flower.
What’s the best way to make the most out of cannabis ruderalis? By crossing it with the dankest cannabis strains known to man.
Hybrids are created by crossing a cannabis ruderalis plant with an indica or sativa marijuana plant. The result is a hybrid strain of cannabis which pulls its THC potency and flavour profile from the indica or sativa cannabis strain the ruderalis was crossed with.
Want to learn more about different cannabis strains and learn how to choose the right one for you? Read our earlier post in this series: Choosing a Cannabis Strain: This Bud’s For You!