Fertilization following pollination predominantly decreases phytocannabinoids accumulation and alters the accumulation of terpenoids in Cannabis inflorescences

In this 2021 paper published in Frontiers in Plant Science, Feder et al. present the analytical results of Cannabis inflorescences that have been pollinated and fertilized, in an attempt to show that fertilization can affect phytocannabinoid accumulation, among other goals. Noting that growers have recently shifted to using seeds, which can despite feminization reveal to be male seeds five to ten percent of the time, the authors note that this type of research—rarely conducted—is particularly critical to answering questions about how pollination effects phytocannabinoid and terpenoid expression. After providing background information and reviewing materials and methods for their analyses, the authors discuss the results, noting in particular that “phytocannabinoid quantity predominately decreases after fertilization,” terpenoid quantity can vary based upon the type of female plant, and that “individual terpenoid concentrations are differentially affected by fertilization.” After further discussion, they conclude not only the three prior-mentioned findings, but they also by extension suggest that their findings indicate the “functional roles” of phytocannabinoids and terpenoids in Cannabis‘s plant life cycle.

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