Coaxing a taproot out of a seed only takes a few days and a few careful steps.

Question: What’s the best way to start growing a marijuana plant from seed?

Answer: Seeds germinate when a small white rootlet emerges. Water, heat and air (oxygen) are all that cannabis seeds need to break dormancy and germinate. Fertilizer, “special” hormones and “secret” additives are not necessary, and are a waste of time and money. Mother Nature provides seeds with a stored food supply to usher them through germination. Strong, viable seeds germinate in two to seven days. At germination, the seed’s protective shell splits and a tiny white rootlet (tap root) pops out.

CANNABIS SEED GERMINATION: STEP-BY-STEP

Step One: For best results, soak seeds for 12-24 hours in a glass of clean water. At first, seeds will often float on the surface. They should sink to the bottom of the container after a few minutes. Soaking ensures that water penetrates the protective shell to activate growth hormones. Avoid soaking seeds in excess of 24 hours. This causes them to suffer oxygen deprivation and drown, prompting seeds to rot.

Step Two: Carefully remove seeds from the container of water. I like to pour water and seeds onto two to four paper towels that are contained by a saucer or plate. Once they are in place, cover the seeds by folding the towels to cover them.

Step Three: Tip the plate at an angle so that all excess water drains freely away. The paper towels should be evenly moist, with no standing water on the plate.

Step Four: Place the seeds in a warm, shady-to-dark location. The ideal temperature range is 70°F to 80°F for fastest germination. Make sure seeds are covered and in the dark. Another variation is to set the paper towels on a grate so that excess water drains away freely. The grate also allows for plenty of air (oxygen) circulation.

Step Five: Touch the towels to check the moisture level two to three times a day. You may need to add water once or twice during the day depending on ambient room humidity and temperature. Keep the towels evenly moist. NEVER let the towels and seeds dry out.

DO NOT let seeds sit in standing water. Excess water must drain away freely. The paper towels are able to retain sufficient moisture to prompt germination in 36 to 96 hours. Of course, some seeds may germinate sooner, and others will take longer, especially older and weaker seeds.

If mold is a concern, take prophylactic measures; add a mild organic fungicide or 2 percent mix of bleach to irrigation water. To get the 2 percent solution, use 2 fluid ounces bleach in 98 ounces water (or 1 ounce bleach in 49 ounces water.)

More more info on the next steps, see this related post: “How to Plant Cannabis Seeds.”

Article originally appeared here. With thanks to The Cannabist. By Jorge Cervantes.

Disclaimer: Overgrow aims to be a hub of information about medicinal cannabis strains. The views expressed in this article do not necessarily reflect those of Overgrow. If you feel your article has been published here without your permission, please get in touch with us.



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