How to germinate weed seeds

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Today we’ll show you how to easily germinate cannibis seeds. Many people are just starting to grow their own marihuana, which may be due to the recent wave of increased social acception, Germinating Marijuana Seeds Easilywhether it’s used to treat an illness or for the meer pleasure of smoking your own weed. A lot of people are taken aback by the idea of planting their own seeds because they think it’s difficult, or because their plants tend to die. This is usually because they don’t have enough information regarding the process; the seeds might be kept too cold, too warm, too wet, too dry etc. In this article we’ll help you so that when you germinate your seeds you won’t go wrong, resulting in a top quality plant, and no disasterous mistakes. All you have to do is follow these easy steps:

How to Germinate Marijuana Seeds – 5 Methods

1 – The Paper Towel Method

This is the easiest method and requires cannabis seeds, paper towels, and two clean plates. A word of advice: Choose cheap paper towels because they are non-porous. As a result, you can lay seeds and roots on the surface and not worry about them getting stuck. If you use high-quality paper towels, the roots will grow into them!

It is a simple method, but also a risky one. You could damage the taproot while moving the sprouted seeds, or else the paper could dry out and kill the seeds. In any case, here is the process:

  1. Use up to four sheets of the paper towel and soak it in distilled water. While the sheet must be soaked, make sure there is no water dripping off.
  2. Place two of the paper sheets on one of the plates and lay the seeds down at least 1” away from one another. Cover with the other two sheets.
  3. Cover the seeds with the second plate to ensure the moisture is locked in. You have created a low-cost dome! Make sure you check the seeds often to see if they have sprouted.
  4. Please ensure that the seeds are kept in a room where the temperature is between 70 and 90 degrees Fahrenheit.
  5. Now you must wait! Seeds typically sprout within 1-4 days, although older seeds often take up to a week.
  6. When checking the seeds, make sure the sheets are saturated. If they are drying out, add more water.
  7. You will know that germination has occurred because the seed will split and a little root appears out of it. Make sure you don’t touch the taproot when it sprouts or during the transplantation process.

2 – Direct Planting

In nature, a marijuana seed will sprout in the soil and emerge with its taproot growing into the earth. Therefore, you can plant cannabis seeds straight into your growing medium of choice. The main benefit here is that you don’t have to worry about ‘shocking’ the seedling while transporting it.

Your seedling should instantly adjust to the new environment and grow. When using this method, dig a hole 0.5” – 1” deep in soil that is moist but not saturated. Keep things warm with a heating pad or lighting.

3 – Starter Cubes and Seedling Plugs

This has been championed as the easiest germination method. It is effectively a foolproof method because all you have to do is place the seed into the cube/plug and add water. Assuming you put the seeds in a room with the right temperature, germination should occur automatically within a few days. There is a pre-made hole for the seeds, so it is a ‘set it and forget it’ type of method.

The main downside with this germination method is that such plugs are generally available in packs of 50. Therefore, if you only plan on planting a few cannabis seeds, you will waste most of the plugs because they dry out in a week or so.

You can also use rockwool cubes as they are cheap and easy to find. However, they are a terrible burden on the environment, bad for your health, have a high pH (which means you must rinse them first), and offer a low cloning and germination success rate.

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4 – Overnight Soaking

This is the easiest method as it involves nothing more than placing the seeds in a glass of lukewarm water overnight. It is a good idea if you’re using old and hard seeds because the soaking process can breathe new life into them. When you place the seeds in water, they float for a few hours before sinking to the bottom of the container.

If you use a transparent container such as glass, you get to see the white taproot break out! You shouldn’t leave seeds soaking in water for more than 32 hours. Otherwise, seeds that haven’t sprouted yet will drown. If the seeds haven’t sprouted by the 32-hour mark, put them in a warm and moist place to complete the germination process. You should probably use the paper towel method at this point.

5 – A Germination Station

You can purchase a readymade version online or attempt a DIY station by placing a plastic dome over a plate which you then add to a heating pad. Professionally made stations are relatively inexpensive and work rather well; you should be able to buy one for under $40, and their plastic tops ensure better humidity control. With top brands, all you have to do is choose your growing media and plugs to start growing.

Plant Stress

Cannabis crops grow the fastest and produce the richest, heaviest harvest when they are given a stable optimal growth environment. Stressed plants produce much less than unstressed plants. Examples of common stress factors include, but are not limited to; lack of water, drowning of roots (too much water, ultraviolet light, nutrient toxicities, acidic exposure, overly cold or hot growing conditions (including soil and grow medium temperatures as well as air), photoperiod fluctuation, low light intensity, plant mutilation (from pruning too much or too fast) etc.

Stress will greatly reduce growth. Although in some rare cases stress may actually cause your plant to produce more resin, the slow inhibited odd growth simply outweighs the extra resin advantage. Many new growers make the mistake of removing their plants large green shade leaves thinking that it is allowing light to shine on their lower leaves, enhancing growth. Although this is good logic in theory, it is simply not the case. The aforementioned method will cause growth as slow as molasses and greatly diminish harvest.

Only ever remove leaves that are half damaged by burns, pests, death, or disease. Also do not make the newbie mistake of removing a yellowing leaf to early, oftentimes once the stress is eliminated the plant will regain it’s vigor and health, including it’s vibrant green coloration. For maximum growth enhancement remove only spindly, dimly lit lower branches. This stresses your plants very little and speeds growth of the upper foliage. Stress can also affect your plant’s sex.

The 9 Common Culprits of Slow Plant Growth

  1. Light Deprivation: Although your plant may be receiving light, particular strains may require higher light levels than others. A recommended light level for optimal full bud development is 50 watts/m2. Full sunlight is 100,000 lumens max.
  2. Light spectrum: Light that does not contain enough red spectrum (too much blue). Light spectrum can have a dramatic effect on plant growth, with different light frequencies affecting different photosynthetic and various other crucial processes within the leaf. Selecting a blue spectrum in a vegetative growth phase is preferred, with red spectrum in flowering.
  3. Over-watering: Soil moisture that is not absorbed rapidly turns stagnant; the plant quickly uses up any oxygen within the water, then is unable to respire further, resulting in moisture low in oxygen. Pythiumaka “root rot” (a common plant problem) thrives in low-oxygen conditions. Over-watering will slowly suffocate your roots, preventing sufficient oxygen uptake by the roots, andultimately causing dreaded root rot.
  4. Low Nutrient Strength: The plant is unable to acquire the necessary amounts of nutrients to sustain high growth rates. Large and mature plants can take higher nutrient strengths.Note: Nutrient strength is also related to the light intensity; plants under fluorescent lights usually require a lower nutrient concentration than under HIDs.
  5. Nutrient Lockup: Adding too much of a nutrient (ex. Magnesium) can lockup one or more nutrients, rendering them chemically unavailable to the plant. Nutrient lockup can occur at extreme pH ranges (ie. under 5.0, over 7.0).
  6. Soil With High Bark Content: Bark is very acidic and may affect soil water pH. The roots will not be able to grow through the bark, preferring to grow around the chunks of bark. This slows down root growth and most obviously plant growth. Once transplanted into proper soil, plants will show remarkable recovery.
  7. pH: pH that is too high or too low (acidic soil) will result in plants that are unable to absorb nutrients, or in adequate quantities within certain pH ranges.Optimum pH varies with each medium:Hydroponics and aeroponics: 5.6-5.8Soilless: 6.0-6.3Soil: 6.5-7.5

    Many soilless mixtures tend to be fairly acidic, due to their high % bark content.

  8. Low Temperatures: Plant metabolism will decrease at low temperatures. Chemical reactions within the plant will take longer. Optimum plant growth often requires close temperature regulation; daytime temperatures between 77- 86°F(25-30°C) are preferred. Differences in daytime and nighttime temperatures should not be dramatic; as this difference may shock the plant and stunt growth.
  9. Low Soil / Medium Temperature: Evaporation from a medium(i.e. peat pots) tends to chill the medium quite a bit due primarily to the evaporation cooling effect. As the peat pot warms, it draws moisture outward, the evaporation effect cools the peat (like sweating). New growers often make the mistake of adding excessive amounts of water, resulting in cold soil, poor rootformation and severely slowed growth.
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Pests, Fungi, & Diseases

(For complete pest identification, prevention, and elimination please refer to the Emergency Marijuana Plant Guide (Free Ebook).)

Next: Part 5. Growing With Soil

Previous: Part 3. Lighting

Germinating Cannabis Seeds with Paper Towel

Germinate Cannabis seeds, paper towel method

Germinate cannabis seeds using the paper towel method

Moving onto the specific methods for germinating cannabis seeds, the paper towel method remains the single most popular. Not only for cannabis seeds, but a whole range of other seeds for growing pretty much anything at all. As the name suggests, the primary component is a couple of sheets of paper towel, which should be folded in half to double their thickness before use.

Take one of the pieces of folded tissue paper, place it on a small dish of some kind or in the bottom of a suitable tub and moisten. You’re not looking for it to be soaking wet, but thoroughly moist. Some sort of spray gun is a good way of getting it right. After this, place the cannabis seeds on the sheet and make sure they’ve got about half-an-inch of space between them. Take the other folded sheet, moisten it to the same moderate extent and lay it on top of the seeds, ensuring it comes into contact with all of the seeds on the sheet.

It’s then simply a case of using another upside-down dish or the lid of the tub to cover the seeds. Making sure it’s closed well enough to create a humid environment but isn’t 100% air-tight. This then needs to be kept somewhere at a temperature of around 21°C – 29.4°C. Keep them in the dark and make sure the towels stay moist. Check them first thing in the morning and last thing at night. With a little luck, it’ll take about 48 hours for all the seeds that are going to open up to do exactly that. Sometimes this can take up to 7 days. So again be patient!

Transfer them to your chosen growing medium as soon as the shoot and root begins to show through.

Germinate Seeds Using Rockwool Cubes

Germinate marijuana seeds using Rockwool cubes

Germination using Rockwool cubes

If you are planning to grow using a hydroponics system, one of the best ways of germinating your cannabis seeds is to use Rockwool cubes. This spun material holds moisture very well and can make it easy to transplant your seedlings straight into your hydro system when the time comes.

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You’ll need to take cubes of around 1-inch in width, height and depth, which should be first soaked with water and then squeezed out well to remove the excess. Take the seeds and place them sideways, one in each cube into a hole at the top of the cube. Gently squeeze the hole to close it up, or use a little more Rockwool to fill the hole. The cubes should then be placed in a tray container and left in warm, controlled conditions.

Using this method, it usually takes between 24 and 48 hours for the seeds to begin to sprout, after which the time comes to take the whole tray and put it to work in your hydroponics system.

The Glass of Water Method

Germinating cannabis seeds using the cup of water method

Germinating using the cup of water method

Last of the three common methods comes the glass of water approach. For the most part it is pretty much self-explanatory. Some swear by this approach to such an extent that it’s the only method they’ll even consider. It’s definitely one of the easiest, not to mention the least demanding in terms of equipment needed.

It’s as simple as taking a glass or cup of an average size and filling it with regular water of a semi-lukewarm temperature. Not hot, not freezing cold. Next, place a few cannabis seeds in the water, take the cup and place it somewhere warm, safe and dark. You can always stick a tea towel or something similar over it to keep things dark. Or even put the cup in a box. Be sensible with the number of seeds you drop in, half a dozen for a cup of water being about the norm.

Leave the warmth, moisture and darkness to do its thing and you should start seeing results after 24 hours. Some seeds take up to 48 hours, depending on the strain. Just as soon as the shoots and roots begin showing through, get them planted in your chosen growing medium very carefully.

What is germination?

Germination is the process for the seed to be born and grown, becoming a seedling; for that, some factors are required: humidity, oxygen, darkness and heat.

  • Humidity: about 90% humidity is required for seed germination.
  • Oxygen: it also needs enough oxygen to start developing.
  • Darkness: it is important to avoid direct light on seeds – germination would be handicapped.
  • Heat: seeds have to be in a warm environment, 20-24 degrees; never below 20 degrees – provide heat sources, if necessary.

If these factors are not adequate, the seed will not germinate; that is why it is so important to be careful during germination – you are responsible of the proper seed parameters.

How to germinate marijuana seeds?

Next, we describe the best cannabis seed germination method; it is very easy – just follow these steps:

What does germination need?

  • Tupper
  • Tissues or kitchen paper – no drawings
  • Bottled mineral water
  • A glass

How to germinate your seeds:

  1. Put the seeds into the glass of warm mineral water – about 20 degrees.
  2. Leave the glass in a warm place – 25 degrees – for 24 hours as maximum.
  3. Moisten the kitchen paper and remove the excess water; it is very important to avoid excess paper humidity – damp, not soaked.
  4. Put the damp paper into the tupper.
  5. Put the seeds onto the damp paper, leaving space between them – otherwise, the roots would get tangled.
  6. Put another damp kitchen paper layer on the seeds; previously, this paper has to be drained too, so there is not any humidity excess.
  7. Close the tupper.
  8. Put the tupper in a warm, dark place.
  9. On the following days, check the paper; if dry, moisten it again – not too soaked: the seeds would not germinate.

A few days later, the root will have sprouted, being planted into a flowerpot.

How to plant marijuana seed

  1. Irrigate the soil, before placing the seed.
  2. Make a little 2-3mm hole.
  3. Place the seed with the root down, and cover it with the substrate.
  4. In 1-3 days, the plant will sprout.
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