germinate cannabis seeds

How To: Germinate Cannabis Seeds

Growing your own weed is fairly easy. As we’ve previously stated in our article ‘Growing Cannabis For The First Time: What Do I Need?‘. The hardest part for some growers though, is germinating their new-bought cannabis seeds. After all, the vulnerable seedlings are easily damaged. However making sure cannabis seeds sprout is the start of a successful grow. So how to go about it?

THIS BLOGPOST IS INTENDED FOR EDUCATIONAL PURPOSES ONLY

Good Cannabis Seeds

We cannot stress this enough. If you want good results, you are going to need good materials to start with. In case of growing cannabis, the first thing on that list are good cannabis seeds, of course. Besides high quality cannabis seeds all you need is some water, a warm environment (between 20-25 degrees Celsius) and – lack of – light to start germinating your future cannabis plants.

Because even though living weed plants love (and need) a lot of light. Germinating cannabis seeds thrive better in a dark environment. And like there are different methods of growing your own cannabis, there’s also a choice in how to make your seeds sprout.

good cannabis seeds
Want good cannabis? Get good seeds!

Germination is actually a process where you activate a dry┬áseed that is in a ‘sleeping state’. By adding water to the seed, a small root that is inside the seed-shell will want to come out in search for more water. This will make it develop into a big taproot that’ll serve as an anchor for the plant and from which more roots will sprout. Read more about root-development in this article: ‘Clones vs. Seeds: What Grows The Best Cannabis?

Wet (Paper) Towels

The best known way of germinating cannabis seeds is to put them on or between wet paper towels or cottonwool. This method exists in different varieties, as it’s not about the paper itself but the absorbency of the material. Thanks to that, it’s very easy to make sure the ‘medium’ stays moist enough and doesn’t dry out easily. If it does dry, you can effortlessly add a few drops of water to immediately re-moisten it.

Germinate Cannabis Seeds
Wet paper towels are probably the most common way of germinating cannabis seeds

The goal here is to balance out the moisture so it’s not too dry, nor to wet. If the seeds stay to dry, the root that’s supposed to sprout won’t be able to make it out of its shell in search for water. If the paper is too wet though, the root will come out and quickly stop looking for water; as it’s already soaked in it. This stops the development of the root, delays the growth and might even cause the seeds to rot after a while. So, be careful not to give too much water as this is one of the most common rookie-mistakes with growing weed!

After the root has sprouted and has gained a few millimeters in length, it’s time to transplant the seedling into it’s soil and put it under a light-source. Because as soon as the seedling pops its head above the ground and green leafs emerge, there’s need of light. This is the part where most growers (especially the more clumsy ones) sometimes lose a seed. As the vulnerable root is easily damaged during the transplant. If you are a bit unhandy, it might be better to choose another germinating method.

Germinating Cannabis Seeds In Soil

Another common method of germinating cannabis seeds, and probably the most natural one, is to stick the seeds directly in their intended medium. With or without soaking it in root-stimulator for a few hours first.

By planting cannabis seeds directly in their soil or coco – or whatever other medium you might be using – growers cause the minimal amount of stress for the plant. And it’s taproot can immediately dive as deep into the ground as possible. Furthermore, its leafs can enjoy the light as soon as they emerge from the developing seed. This way the seedling can start its growth with a fair chance. Providing you with a steady, high-yielding cannabisplant.

germinated cannabis seedling
Cannabis seeds and sprouted seedlings require a temperature around 20-25 degrees Celsius

For this method simply prepare your medium, by moisturizing it for example. Then fill up your pots and make a small hole of 10-15mm deep in the top layer to put the seed in. Cover the seed up loosely and top it off with a little water. Be careful not to give too much at once though! A stream of water can cause the seed to travel further down the pot where it’s too moist – and too deep to travel back up again.

The top layer is the perfect place to germinate cannabis seeds, as it dries out faster than the soil further down the pot. This makes it easier to ensure the right level of moisture for the seed to germinate. But without making it so wet the seeds rot in the ground. Again, it’s all about the balance between too wet and too dry.

Germinate Cannabis Seeds in Plugs

Last but not least on this list is the germination of cannabis seeds in special plugs. These plugs are made from different materials and specially designed for a quick and efficient germination of cannabis seeds. As you can see in the first Strawberry Glue grow report Mr. Kush published on Dutch medical cannabis website Mediwietsite.nl, these plugs are pretty handy.

germinating cannabis seeds
Plugs are a practical way of germinating cannabis seeds

In his case, the plugs came in as dry blocks of (probably) coco fibre. By fully absorbing 250ml of a root-stimulator and another 250ml water, they slowly turned into a moist, soil-like plug. After sticking the seed in the top of the plug, it takes a few days at maximum before you see the first heads pop. As soon as the roots grows out of the bottom or the side of the plug, you can stick the complete plug + seedling into your intended medium. Making not only the germination, but also the initial transplant a piece of cake.