If you’re interested in cannabis tissue culture around Lansing, MI, you likely understand what an exciting time it is in the cannabis industry. From increasing legalization efforts to opportunities to cultivate cannabis on a properly zoned property, there are a lot of developments currently underway in this lucrative industry.
Did you know that there are over 100 cannabinoids found in the cannabis plant? The two most well-known cannabinoids are THC and CBD. Hemp and cannabis are both from the Cannabis sativa plant, but hemp has a very low concentration of THC, while cannabis has a much higher concentration of THC. In this article, we will discuss the basics of cannabis tissue culture cultivation and how it differs from traditional methods.
What Is Cannabis?
Cannabis is a type of plant which originated in Central Asia and spread to the Middle East and across the globe. It is known for its psychoactive properties due to its tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) content. This ingredient is cultivated through marijuana plant breeding to varying degrees of potency, with medical cannabis at the higher end of THC content. In addition to Cannabis sativa, scientists have also distinguished C. indica and C. ruderalis as subspecies to C. sativa.
The exact number of cannabinoids in C. sativa is yet unknown, but they are currently being researched. Another well-known cannabinoid from the plant is CBD, or cannabidiol. Other names for cannabis include marijuana, pot, weed, dope, chronic, hash, and others.
What Is a Cannabinoid?
Cannabinoids are the hundreds of compounds found in the cannabis plant which help to determine the particular variety’s effect on human receptors like appetite and pain sensation as well as the plant’s effect on people experiencing anxiety and depression. In other words, cannabinoids regulate how your cells interact and how your brain receives, sends, and interprets stimuli.
What Is the Difference Between Hemp and Cannabis?
While both hemp and cannabis stem from the same plant family, hemp has a much lower THC content at less than 0.3%. Cannabis is classified as having 0.3% THC and above—up to 37.28%. This means that generally speaking, a plant classified as hemp does not have enough of the psychoactive compound THC to produce a “high” if smoked or ingested, unlike marijuana plants.
How Is Cannabis Propagated?
Many people tout the health benefits associated with cannabis, including the use of CBD to treat certain forms of epilepsy. This is one of the contributing reasons why it is so widely cultivated around the world, though it has a history of restriction and being considered an illicit substance. There are several ways that an individual can propagate cannabis, from conventional methods to callus production. Here are the primary ways to propagate cannabis:
This is the form of cannabis propagation that most gardeners and horticulturists utilize, using clippings of a mother plant as well as seeds to produce more plants. If using vegetative cuttings from a mother plant, cannabis cultivators typically select axillary buds or nodal segments from the plant they are wishing to propagate.
If using seeds, a person wishing to propagate cannabis must keep seeds in moist, tilled soil, ideally with cool fluorescent lighting. Germination will typically occur between four days and one week.
In Vitro Propagation
Also called micropropagation, in vitro propagation involves taking aseptic cultures from plant tissues, cells, and organs to be cloned in a controlled environment. This type of environment is typically highly lit with controlled temperature and access to nutrients.
Agrobacterium Mediated Transformation
This type of in vitro propagation utilizes a soil pathogenic bacterium called Agrobacterium to transfer a desired gene into plant cells. This type of transgenic plant modification enables plants to pass desired traits through the generations faster than traditional breeding methods.
Producing Callus in Cannabis
Much like a callus on a dermal layer of human skin, a callus in the botanical sense is a soft tissue that grows over a plant’s wounds to promote healing. By cultivating a callus in a plant, a botanist may be able to regenerate an entire plant from the types of cells that form the callus, the likes of which may produce stems, leaves, and even roots.
Benefits of Cannabis Tissue Culture Cultivation
While it can be rewarding to replicate a cannabis plant through the use of a callus, there are several benefits to cultivating the plant through tissue cultures as well. Some of these benefits include:
· The ease with which a cultivator can mass produce large quantities of the desired plant
· Disease control, meaning a larger return on investment
· Genetic stability
· It is possible to observe and control genetic traits
· Genetic material can be stored for longer stretches of time
· It is possible to breed for desired cannabinoids efficiently
While there are many benefits to cannabis tissue culture cultivation, it is not always a plant propagator’s first choice. This is because maintaining the type of environment necessary for cultivating plant tissues, i.e. a sterile environment, and it is also expensive to invest in. Maintaining this type of environment not only takes constant vigilance, but there is a higher utility bill associated with cultivating plants in a controlled environment versus growing them outside using solar energy from the sun. Additionally, clones may take a longer period of time to reach maturity for harvest, which is another reason why some cannabis cultivators do not opt for this method.
However, if you’re looking for a means of cannabis propagation that allows you to better control the quality and output of your cannabis plants, cannabis tissue culture cultivation may be the right way to go about it. While the initial investment can be costly for equipment, cloning materials, and environmental controls, you may be guaranteed a larger crop of usable cannabis, with a potentially higher quality than plants that may be grown exposed to diseases, fungus, and pests. For this reason alone, many horticulturists dedicated to cultivating large amounts of plants choose this method for its reliability, the quality of the output, and the general protection of the return on investment.
Cannabis Tissue Culture Classes in Lansing, MI
The world of cannabis is currently changing. With the controls placed on the production, possession, and distribution of marijuana upon its legality on a state-by-state basis beginning in 2014, we are finally beginning to see the regulations necessary for the quality and consistency of cannabinoid content in each product. With this new approach to our relationship with this ancient medicinal plant, many cannabis fans are able to cultivate their own grow operation, whether for personal use or for commercial gain as we watch more and more states sign on for legalized marijuana.
Are you interested in cultivating your own cannabis tissue cultures in Lansing, MI? Shoots N’ Roots specializes in teaching cannabis tissue cultivation courses, and have become known as the watermark for cannabis cultivation education in Michigan. For a list of course material, click here, or schedule a class today!