Photographs of Immature Seeded Hemp Fruit

Below are photographs of immature seeded hemp fruit. The plants have been under a short day for 30 days, the males have all released their pollen and have been dispatched.

The plants are showing clear signs of pollination. These signs would include a uniform browning and withering of the pistils, the cessation of new pistils emerging and remarkable swelling of the calyxes.

The fruited bodies are ovum shaped with pointed ends and are roughly 3 – 6mm in length, depending on the degree of maturity.

As the seeds near maturity they will grow and become visible as they break through a membrane and force an opening through the sepal that is the protective structure they are wrapped in.

This is a look at the distal end of the fruit, that which is farthest from the point of attachment. The green covering is called the sepal and is really a modified leaf.

It is important to note that in drug cultivars, this sepal tissue contains the highest concentration of cannabinoid producing trichomes of any location on the plant. In this particular fiber type there are very few trichomes present on the sepal’s surface.

There are, however, a great deal of clear spike-shaped hairs known as cystolithic hairs. The sharp points and rigid shafts suggest that these hairs serve as a physical barrier to protect the fruit from insects.

You can see in the photograph the moist membrane that surrounds the developing seed and the seam that is opening as the seed grows in size.

This is a look at the proximal end of the fruit, that by which it is attached to the plant. You can see a small pucker on the end of the fruit. This will be visible in the final shape of the dried grain.

More visible from this angle is the membrane and the developing seam from where the seed will emerge when ripe.

For comparison I made a photograph of a seeded fruit from a known drug type, Haze. When you look at the surface of the sepal you will see a large number of stalked, spherical trichomes. These trichomes are the source of THC and the other cannabinoids.

You will also notice that there are very few of the cystolithic hairs present on this fruit. It is possible that this difference could be useful in verifying field crops as being non-drug types. More study of this is required.


I hope that you find this information helpful and interesting. Best wishes. -Ben

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