Do you want Indica, Sativa or a hybrid of both. Will you use indoor hydroponics or grow outdoors? What height do you want? Regardless, what you’ll learn from this guide is how to successfully germinate your seeds. Then, how to plant cannabis seeds properly in soil.
Do you want your plants to be purple?
There are well over 2,000 unique marijuana strains out there. Picking the right type for your grow room and kind of crop you want is essential.
This guide, however, picks up assuming you already have the seeds you want. Hopefully, you pushed your budget to the limit and made a good seed investment.
How To Germinate Cannabis Seeds
There are three main conditions required to ‘awaken’ the seed: darkness, moisture, and warmth. The method outlined below is one of the easiest and most popular ways to germinate cannabis seeds. It also requires the fewest materials.
But beware! The germination method below is best used for older seeds, unverified seeds, or seeds that may be partially dried out. If you were able to purchase new, fresh seeds, then you can plant your seeds directly into your growing medium. If that applies to you, skip to the next section.
What You’ll Need
- unbleached (i.e. brown, chlorine-free) paper towels or other unbleached napkin or tissue paper
- clean water
- a thermometer
Step 1: Cut the paper towel in half length-wise. Then, fold each half in half.
Step 2: Get the paper towels wet, but not soaked. Both halves of the paper towel should be damp, but not dripping wet. If you have over-watered, be sure to squeeze out any extra moisture.
Step 3: Place one half of the wet paper towel on a small dish.
Step 4: Place your seeds on the towel by laying them on their blunt end. Be sure to allow roughly ½” of space between the seeds, so that the roots do not get tangled.
Step 5: Cover with the other half of the paper towel making sure it is in contact with the seeds.
Step 6: Finally, place an upside down dish on top — like you would to keep leftovers warm. Make sure the dish on top is the same size and type as the bottom dish. This is to keep the marijuana seeds in the dark and the humidity high to add water to your dried out seeds.
Now you’re seeds have the perfect environment for germination. Here’s some advice so you don’t accidentally kill your precious seeds!
Keep the seeds at about 70°F to 85°F. The top of the refrigerator (a warm zone) is a good option. Make sure the towel never dries out or you will kill the seeds.
Check the seeds twice a day until you see the seed case split. Look for the emergence of a tiny root at the bottom and a white shoot at the top.
Usually all viable seeds will have opened within 48 hours. Be very careful handling them at this point. They are very fragile.
Once you can see the root and shoot, plant the seeds on their sides in the growing medium of your choice. Here’s how!
How To Plant Cannabis Seeds
Now that your seeds have germinated, it’s time to plant them. One thing to watch out for before you start:
Any growing medium used for germination must also have the correct pH for cannabis seeds.
This guide explains how to properly plant your seeds in soil. Rockwool also works, but can be more complicated. This guide is after the simple-life!
Remember, while you may have created a humid environment to germinate older seeds, humidity is a young plant killer!
Cannabis is a ultimately a desert plant, and does best under arid conditions.
Step 1: Take 3-4″ diameter pots or a seedling tray and fill with quality potting soil.
Step 2: Press the soil slightly down and make a half-inch deep hole with a pencil or finger.
Step 3: If you are planting new seeds prior to germination, place the seed in a horizontal position in the hole (this is the easiest method). Fill the hole and gently tap down the soil. If you are planting pre-germinated seeds, place the germinated seed in a vertical position, with root tip down and the young shoot up.
Step 4: Use chlorine free water (preferably good mineral water without gas) with a pH of 6-6.5 to water the pots. Don’t use tap water unless you have tested for the proper pH!
The soil should be uniformly moist and properly watered, but not soggy or waterlogged.
The pots or tray should also not stand in a tray filled with water. Instead of pouring water in, use a spoon or small beaker to water properly.
This will help you to avoid accidentally overwatering the soil.
Step 5: Put the pots or tray at a warm location and ideally under lighting. Temperatures at 75°F or higher accelerate germination and growth.
However, take care that the soil does not dry out and that the pots don’t stand in the cold. Anything under 70°F is too cold.
Misting the soil surface with water spray is not effective. Always water the pots properly if the soil surface dries up.
Step 6: Within 3-7 days the seedlings should appear out of the soil! You can switch on your lamps during germination to provide warmth or when the first seedlings appear.
Since cannabis seeds tend to exhibit more activity in night, keeping your lamps on 24 hours to help pull your sprouts out of the soil.
Congratulations! You have successfully planted your cannabis seeds!
What Not To Do When Planting Cannabis Seeds
Finally, no guide would be incomplete without things to avoid. So here’s a list of do nots when it comes to properly planting cannabis seeds.
Things to avoid
- humidity dome/mini-greenhouse fully covered
- heating mat that’s too hot
- covering pots with plastic
- germinating in jiffy’s and peat pellets
- wrong soil for germination
- fertilizing seedlings
- too much/too little water
- cold and dark germination room
- cold outdoor temperatures; frost
- wrong pH of water
- bad water quality
- high EC of nutrient solution in hydroponics
- spraying seedlings with water/organic teas/pesticides
(Photo Credit: GrowWeedEasy)