Episode 12: Cannabis Genetics

On this episode of Agrify Live, Agrify’s VP & Head of Horticulture and Customer Success, David Kessler, discusses cannabis genetics, pheno-hunting, and genetic selection, with special guest, Miles Durham. Miles is a grower and genetic expert who is currently working with Greenstone out of Colorado.


Tips about Cannabis Genetics:

  • It is important to do research: know your breeders, how they formed, who they partnered with, the history, where they breed, and how they breed.
  • The United States is in the middle of a “genetic renaissance.”

Vegetative Traits:

  • Phenotypes are the genetic expression specific to grow and custom to the environment.
  • Genotypes are traits that stem from DNA or the genetic makeup of the plant.
  • Pheno-hunting is sifting through seeds to look for traits the grower needs to cultivate.
  • The more seeds, the higher chance of getting the strain with the phenotypes the breeder wants.
  • If you top your plant earlier, there is a better chance the plant shows sex organs faster, especially if it is topped and grown in the same environment.
  • Breeders want females for further production.
  • Males give information, but they are not equipped for mass production like females are.

Flowering Traits:

  • The three pillars breeders want flowers to express are trichome saturation (potency), terpene profile, and yield.
  • Stress tests are vital for mass production (temperature, lifecycle, water). Run the test three times (three generations) so the plant stabilizes and does not herm.
  • The herm trait is when the plant grows male “balls” or “bananas”.
    • Balls look like two lobster claws coming from the plant.
    • Bananas look like bananas and produce pollen.
    • We do not want pollen, that’s why we eliminate male flowers!