How To Germinate Cannabis Seeds
Germinating Cannabis Seeds
You have your medical marijuana grow room or tent set up and you're ready to start growing. The first step to your journey into growing your very own medical cannabis will be seed germination. If you haven't picked up or ordered any cannabis seeds, now would be a great time to check out these two reliable sources and get some fantastic fire medical strains picked out.
Now that you have your cannabis seeds picked out you're ready to start the germination process and begin the life of your Cannabis plant. Germinating a Cannabis seed is an easy process that does not need to be stressful. Most Cannabis seeds are going to germinate and sprout very easily. However if you have an older seed that you are worried about, we will cover some tips and tricks to help increase the germination rate of older seeds.
Environment for Germinating Seeds
We want our Cannabis seeds to have high germination success, but we also want to grow weed easy and effecient. One way to ensure that we will have the easiest time growing our medical weed is to make sure our environment is on point. The better our environment the better chances we have for successful germination and the stronger our Cannabis seedlings will grow.
Germinating seeds typically like a warmer temperature, with 70*F being the minimum temperature I would recommend, 80*F being the warmest, and 75*F being most optimal. It is also important that our seeds remain in a very high humidity and wet environment while they attempt to split their shell and germinate.
Paper Towel Method
My uncle taught me the "paper towel method" many years ago and it has worked with extremely good success ever since. I find it very rare that I have a seed that will not germinate with the paper towel method. Not only has this method been tried and true to cannabis growers for decades it still continues to provide amazing results and outstanding germination rates with little effort.
The paper towel method is as simple as grabbing a Ziploc sandwich bag, a paper towel, and small cup of water along with your cannabis seeds. While in today's times I'll be using distilled water for the germination process, tap water has worked for me year after year in the passed. Germinating Cannabis seeds is as simple as
1. Fold your paper towel 2 or 3 times in half.
2. Completely soak the entire paper towel.
3. Place your seeds in the center of the paper towel.
4. Insert your seeds and paper towel into your Ziploc baggy.
5. Place in a warm and dark spot for 48 hours.
After 48 hours its time to check your seeds and see if a taproot has sprouted. The taproot will be a small white root protruding from the seed. The seed sprout is very fragile at this stage and must be treated very gently. If a taproot is present then our seeds have germinated successfully and they are ready for planting. If you don't see a taproot let your seeds sit in the paper towel and Ziploc for another 24 hours and check again. It is important to re soak your paper towel if it feels like it is drying out. Some seeds can take as long as 5 days to germinate however most are ready for planting within 48 hours.
Planting the Germinated Cannabis Seed
Once your seed has sprouted a tap root it's ready to be planted in the medium of your choice. For this grow series we are going to be using a mix of CocoTek Coco and Hoffman Perlite. These two products will mix together and provide the perfect ratio of coco and perlite giving us an airy and high draining medium for our coco grow.
We want to fill our red solo cups up about 7/8's of the way with our coco and perlite mix. Once we have the cups filled with our growing medium we are ready to plant our germinated seeds. Planting the seeds is a fairly easy process and we will start by poking our finger into the top of the coco about 1/4" to 1/2" deep. This will provide us a small hole to place our seed into.
We want to simply drop our germinated cannabis seed into the small hole we just created. It is best to get your tap root in a downward facing direction as it gives your seedlings the best chance at breaking ground. Once your seed is placed you can gently cover it up with medium and lightly tap it.
From here I will give each seed a small amount of water to ensure the surrounding coco is wet and humid. It is still very important at this stage to keep the seeds in very high humidity. After we lightly water each seed we will use the Ziploc bags we germinated in and re purpose them as humidity domes. These humidity domes will greatly assist in helping our seedlings sprout out of our medium. As environment is one of the most important factors and we happen have low humidity, so these humidity domes will serve a very important role in our success.
Your seedlings do not need much water at this point and over water or drowning is very simple to do as a new grower. Make sure you are just watering right around your seed and keep the medium moist. There is no reason to soak the entire cup of medium. If your growing in coco you can follow our feeding schedule here.
Tips for Germinating Older Seeds
If you have seeds that are extremely old or you are afraid they may not germinate there are some extra steps you can take to increase your chances for a successful germination. Some growers will place their seeds in a shot glass of water for 24 hours before placing them into paper towels. It has also been known of growers to gently scratching the outer shell of older seeds with light sandpaper to assist the taproot in popping out.