Monoecious and dioecious plants
Fiber hemp is originally a dioecious plant; so there are female plants with female flowers and male plants with male flowers. On a dioecious plant only female or only male flowers occur.
This is different with monoecious plants. Both male and female flowers can grow on one plant. Two sexes on one plant.
The sex organs of the fiber hemp plant can only be seen in the flowering phase of the plant. Before the flowering phase there is no difference visible between the female and male flowers. The female flowers (pistils) have small white hairs, while the males have small oval-shaped spheres, also called balls.
Female / male
During flowering, the female plant produces many valuable cannabinoids, terpenes and flavonoids which are formed in the sticky trichomes (wax-like hairs). These trichomes are found in large amounts on the flowers and in slightly lesser amounts on the surface of the leaves and stems. Trichomes are found on both male and female plants, but they are particularly concentrated in the tips of the female flower. That is why the female flower buds are used in the production of CBD oil.
When the male flowers open, pollen is spread. The pollen can be carried for miles by the wind and pollinate a female flower. After a female flower is pollinated, it proceeds to seed formation. However, this process consumes a a lot of energy, which reduces the production of cannabinoids.
Why are there monoecious and dioecious plants?Fiber hemp is dioecious in origin. The male plants are smaller and thinner, the female plants are larger and stronger. So for cultivation with the aim of extracting the fibres, the female plants are better. The male plants were actually useless for fiber yield. The fiber of a female plant was of much higher quality. About 50% of the seeds grow into a male plant. This has a major influence on the fiber yield. The solution to this problem was, the monoecious plants Through seed breeding (crossing two varieties, with the aim of creating a new variety that combines the properties of the two) there are monoecious species. This ensures that all plants have both male and female flower tips. As a result, all plants have approximately the same external characteristics and all plants are approximately the same size and strength. This ensures a more even fiber yield.
NATURALLY PRESENT COMPONENTS
The entourage effect is important. This is the synergy between the terpenes and the cannabinoids. In addition to the cannabinoids, the terpenes are significant. Terpenes are the volatile aromatic compounds that give each plant species its own distinctive smell and taste. It is therefore crucial to retain as much of the substances that are naturally present in the plant as possible.
Trichomes are the wax-like hairs on the outside of flower and leaf material. A trichome consists of a head and a stalk. With the naked eye they look like a white frozen layer, but when you look at them with a microscope you see a drop of resin on a trunk. They are shaped like a kind of mushroom. Inside the head of the trichomes are the components of the fiber hemp plant. In contrast to many other plants, the components are located on the outside of the plant. The components of cannabis-related plants, such as the fiber hemp plant, are called cannabinoids. Trichomes can have different functions, depending on the type of fiber hemp and where it is grown. It offers the plant a number of survival mechanisms, such as protection against insects, fungi, bacteria, UV radiation and extreme weather conditions.
Terpenes can have an effect on the human body. Essential or essential oils are produced from terpenes, such as lavender, citrus or eucalyptus. In the hemp plant, the terpenes and cannabinoids influence each other.
Due to the great interest in cannabinoids and the influence of the endocannabinoid system, scientists are discovering more and more cannabinoids. According to studies, the number of identified cannabinoids in cannabis now exceeds 100. The most well-known are described below.1
- CBC – Cannabichromene This cannabinoid is after CBD and THC a frequently occurring cannabinoid in cannabis.
- CBCa The acid form or preform of CBC
- CBD – Cannabidiol Cannabidiol, abbreviated CBD, is one of more than 100 different types of cannabinoids. Together with THC, it is the most common component in a cannabis plant. Unlike THC, CBD is not psychoactive. In fiber hemp plants, CBD is the dominant cannabinoid and therefore easy to extract from the plant material. CBD has no restrictions and is freely tradable. A number of studies have already been done on the precise effect of CBD on the human body.
- CBDa The acidic form of CBD to which many properties are also attributed.
- CBN – Cannabinol Cannabinol, abbreviated CBN, is a cannabinoid that occurs in very small quantities in the plant material. The plants themselves do not make the substance CBN, but it is the breakdown substance of THC. THC is exposed to heat and oxygen, a chemical reaction (oxidation process) occurs This reaction breaks down the THC and creates the substance CBN. Even though CBN is a substance that arises from THC, it is not psychoactive. As a result, there will be no ‘high’ feeling after taking this cannabinoid.
- CBG – Cannabigerol Cannabigerol, abbreviated CBG, is a very important cannabinoid for a cannabis plant. CBG is seen as a building block for all other cannabinoids. CBG is one of the first cannabinoids to be produced in the plant. It occurs when the plant is still a seedling. A process is started with the help of enzymes. This process converts CBG to other cannabinoids, such as CBD and THC. It is not the intention of the plant to retain CBG in the plant material, in fact almost all CBG is converted. If CBG does remain, the concentration of the other cannabinoids is often lower. CBG also has an effect on the human body. So it’s not bad at all if CBG remains in the plants.
- CBGa – Cannabigerolic Acid CBGa is the preform of CBG, and is known as the stem cell or “mother cell” of the cannabinoids. As a ‘primary’ cannabinoid, CBGa is the precursor from which the three main cannabinoid branches are formed: CBDa, CBCa and THCa. Without CBGa, no other cannabinoids would be produced in the cannabis plant. Without CBGa, no other cannabinoids would be produced in the cannabis plant.
- THC – Tetrahydrocannabinol Tetrahydrocannabinol, abbreviated THC, is a psychoactive compound that occurs naturally in cannabis plants and also in fiber hemp plants. But because the THC concentrations in fiber hemp plants are so low, it will not have a psychoactive effect on the human body. THC is the compound found in high concentrations in marihuana plants and is widely used for recreational purposes. Because of the psychoactive effect of the substance THC, weed/marihuana is included on list 1 of the Opium Act. But THC also has a beneficial effect on the human body and is necessary to achieve a greater effect with the entourage effect. Because of this countries like Canada and Uruguay made cannabis completely legal for recreational and medicinal purposes. In the Netherlands, small amounts of THC in end products (<0,05%) are allowed
NATURAL AND SYNTHETIC CANNABINOIDS
In addition to natural cannabinoids, there are also synthetic cannabinoids. The cannabinoids attach to the CB1 and CB2 receptors in the human body. The big difference between natural and synthetic cannabinoids is that with synthetic cannabinoids no plant has been used to develop this. It is developed in a lab, but not always under the right conditions. The process is prone to errors and there are already many documented cases of synthetic cannabinoid poisoning.2,3,4,5
The effect of synthetic cannabinoids can be many times stronger than natural cannabinoids, but due to the toxic effects it can have on humans, they are potentially dangerous substances.