Enjoy this full guide on how to germinate cannabis seeds, the three most popular methods and tips from your home grow experts for successful germination. Here you can learn about germinate cannabis seeds. Germinating cannabis seeds is not hard. Here we explain it for you. So many Growers, so many Preferences. We asked 143 growers: what is the best way germinating weed seeds?
How To Germinate Cannabis Seeds
A marijuana plant is cultivated in one of two methods, from growing seeds or using clones. Growing your marijuana plants from cannabis seeds has many benefits and it is worthwhile to learn how to germinate cannabis seeds. Many growers view growing from seeds as being a purer method than using clones and let’s face it, harvesting the lovely ladies we nurtured from birth is rewarding. Germinating, also called “popping”, is the first step to enjoying your own weed garden.
Benefits of Germinating Cannabis Seeds
Cannabis seeds allow growers to cultivate cannabis plants with a fresh batch of genetics, with DNA code that has not been exposed to disease and a poor growing environment. Growing with seeds typically yields more than a clone, as seeds produce a tap root which gives the plant anchor for better support and a better nutrient and water uptake system. Beginners might have an easier time learning how to germinate cannabis seeds as clones can be tricky, a bit delicate and could have inherited disease or pests.
Cannabis seeds are also much easier to find, a good quality cannabis seed bank will offer a wide selection of quality cannabis seeds. Whereas, finding quality cuttings from a vegetating mother plant can be difficult, and not within the limits of the law depending on where you get it from and where you live. Seeds can also be stored for a while in the refrigerator until you are ready to germinate, clones must be used immediately or they’ll die.
Growing from seeds might add a little time to your full harvest cycle but can definitely be worth the effort. Ultimately, the choice is subjective but we feel that growing from quality cannabis seeds is highly rewarding.
How to Prepare to Germinate Cannabis Seeds
Before you want to start the germination process, follow these tips for greater success:
● Keep seeds cool, damp and dark – make sure you’ve been storing your seeds in a sealed bag, in a damp, dark place like the refrigerator (approximately 55 degrees F) in a bed of rice. Take them out when you are ready to plant them, this is similar to the temperature change cannabis plants are used to when going from winter to spring and helps to promote successful germination. Seeds do not germinate so well in light as too much light will harden parts of the seed by decomposing carbonic acid gas, expelling oxygen and fixing the carbon which can prevent vegetation.
● Label your containers – no matter what method you choose, get some labels or tape and markers to write the strain and dates on your containers.
● Moisture – seeds require moisture to expand and break through the shell.
● Temperature – keep the temperature around 72°F (20-22°C) which mimics springtime. *never place your germinating seeds in the windowsill.
● Humidity – the best humidity for seeds to germinate is around 70 to 90%
● Handle with care – treat your germinating seeds like the new babies they are to avoid accidentally breaking delicate structures.
Just follow these tips and remember that germinating seeds requires minimal interference to start their life’s journey. Within a matter of anywhere from 3 to 10 days, you’ll see your sprouts and be ready to plant into your growing medium.
How to Germinate Cannabis Seeds: Most Popular Methods
Germinating cannabis seeds can be started indoors or outdoors, although starting indoors can give your seeds a better chance of survival. If germinating outdoors, small plants are exposed to pests, mold, wind, and extreme temperature changes. Newly germinated seedlings are quite vulnerable and must be kept safe, which is easier to do indoors.
The three most popular methods for germinating cannabis seeds are the:
1. Soak In Water & Hydrogen Peroxide Method (Mosca Preferred Method)
2. Paper Towel Method
3. Plant In Soil Method
1) Soak in Water & Hydrogen Peroxide Method to Germinate Cannabis Seeds (Mosca Preferred Method)
Some people find success by soaking their seeds in water with 20% Hydrogen Peroxide for about 12-18 hours then putting directly into soil. You can do this to combine the soak and plant in soil methods, or check for sprouting within 48 hours and then plant.
1) Use distilled water – Use a small, 8 oz. cup of either distilled or reverse osmosis water with 20% Hydrogen Peroxide at room temperature.
2) Drop your seeds into the cup – label it and check them every 8 hours.
3) Swirl around the water – this encourages the seeds to sink to the bottom.
You should begin to see sprouts, what looks like tails, coming out of the seed casing within about 12 to 18 hours. Once you see the beginning of the tap root emerging from the seed, carefully remove from the water and plant into your growing medium with the root facing downward. Water the soil, coco or grow medium with distilled water for the first few weeks.
2) Paper Towel Method to Germinate Cannabis Seeds
Using the paper towel method is simple, requires common products you have at home and has a high rate of germination. For this method you’ll need:
● Paper towels
● Distilled water
● Two clean plates, a sealed container, or a zip lock bag
1) Wet a paper towel – use distilled water or reverse osmosis water at room temperature.
2) Fold it twice – and place your seeds on the wet towel.
3) Keep seeds dark, warm and humid – place the paper towel either in between two covered plates, in a covered container or in a Ziplock bag.
4) Spray with water every few hours. Do not forget to keep your seeds moist! Your seeds will not sprout if left unattended on a dry napkin.
When you see your seeds open up and show the first sign of a tap root, get ready to plant into your growing medium (peat, coco, soil). Plant your seed with the root facing downward.
3) Plant in Soil Method to Germinate Cannabis Seeds
Some people have success planting their cannabis seeds directly into quality, potting soil. The key here is to use only fresh, never before used potting soil. If you try to reuse soil that had been used to grow other things the soil is already devoid of precious nutrients.
1) Fill your containers with quality soil – fill your pots or seedling trays with fresh potting soil and tamp down the top.
2) Plant twice as deep as the seed is wide – you don’t want to dig a deep hole to place the seed in. Simply indent with your finger about 1/8 to 1/2 of an inch.
3) Water thoroughly for the next few days – give your containers a good soaking without disrupting the seed. Use a gentle soak method and water until you see water coming out the bottom of the container to make sure they’re good and soaked. You don’t want your containers continually, excessively soggy but you can’t let them dry out either. *use only distilled or purified water for the first few weeks until you can transition to a nutrient solution.
4)Cover loosely with saran wrap to help keep moisture levels up. Remove once the seedlings emerge from the soil.
You should soon see green sprouts popping through the soil. Remember that you do not need to, and should not, provide light to your germinating seeds. Seeds require darkness, the right temperature and humidity to germinate. Once your seed sprouts, you can begin to add lighting although young cannabis plants are not yet able to process high-intensity light. It’s best to start with a lower wattage light like LED or CFL lighting, something like a blue (cold) spectrum light is good for this young age to promote vegetative growth.
Mosca Seeds offers a wide selection of quality cannabis seeds to get you started on growing your own cannabis garden. Whichever growing method or medium you choose, starting with quality cannabis seeds bred with experienced and trusted breeding genetics will yield you the best result. Check out our seed bank to choose the quality cannabis seeds of your choice and follow these tips to successfully germinate your cannabis seeds.
How to germinate cannabis seeds?
Germinating marijuana seeds can be done in different ways. Each experienced grower has his own prefereces. Before we dive into the diverse methods it’s a good idea to contemplate a little on how nature deals with this.
After the female cannabis plant has been pollinated by the male cannabis plant pollen, the female weed plant starts to produce seeds. This takes 9 weeks on average. When the seeds have matured the weed plant starts to rot causing the seeds to fall to the ground, winter begins.
A rotten cannabis plant in january.
It starts to freeze, then thaw setts on and the weed seeds start to germinate. This proces teaches us multiple things.
- Climate conditions needed for germinating marijuana seeds.
- How does nature store it’s marijuana seeds?
Cannabis seeds germinate in nature after the freezing stops. A moist cold period, especially low above ground where the seeds reside.
The cannabis seeds are stored during winter. This teaches you to store your cannabis seeds in a cold environment for them not to lose their ability to germinate.
Cannabis seeds germination
Cannabis seeds germinate in a glass of water.
Throw the marijuana seeds in a glass filled with slightly lukewarm water and wait. Is it really that easy? Yes! The glass filled with the water can be kept at room (ambient) temperature. The water will quickly become dirty. Therefore it is neccessary to refresh the water in time in order to prevent the seeds from rotting
Because the seeds are in the water for quite some time, the germs are very fragile. Keep this in mind when repotting. With multiple species, it is important during germination to label the glasses so you don’t forget which species of cannabis resides in which glass.
Germinating marijuana seeds in a glass of water
Since the water needs to be replenished, this is the most labor intensive germination method
Germinating cannabis seeds on a moist surface
A heavily used weed seed germination method is using a moist surface. This surface can consist of moist absorbing materials like kitchen roll paper and cotton. This is often done at living room temperatures which makes the moisture vaporize quickly. A commenly made mistake is underestimating the speed at which the moisture vaporizes. When the seeds lay dry, nothing will happen (they will not germinate).
To prevent dehidration the moist surface can be placed within a closed wrapping, for instance in between two dinner plates creating condensation. Also, it is possible to spray the surface with fresh water on a daily basis in order to prevent dehidration.
Germinating cannabis seeds on a moist surface.
A recently discoverd video shows a do-it-yourself method that doesn’t need any maintenance. Set it and forget it.
Germinating cannabis seeds in soil.
Germination marijuana seeds in soil is the easiest approach in our view. What is important? Right, MOISTURE! Don’t let the soil get dehidrated but also do not make it ludacrisly wet. Put the seed about 5 milimeter deep and moisturise the soil. Keep at room tempurature. Check the soil daily for dehidration. The perfect soil is special sawing soil but regular potting soil or even garden soil are also fine. As long as the seeds are not put to deep into the ground and do not get dehidrated things will work out fine.
Why using this method? Repotting is not neccessary as the seed is allready in soil and so no chance of damages during repotting occurs. Just occasionally check soil humidity, that’s all.
Germinating old, hard to germinate seeds
- Do you keep old seeds from the 80’s or maybe earlier in your fridge?
- Do you keep seeds in your desk that have been stored incorrectly?
These are two examples of seeds that are hard to germinate.
Research shows hydrogen peroxide stimulates germination of seeds. Healthy seeds will germinate in a hydrogen peroxide bath within 24 hours. Hydrogen peroxide is for sale at your local pharmacy for just a couple of euro/pount/dollar etc. Hydrogen peroxide is normally used for: rinsing when have olcers, oxidising, bleatching (hair), disinfection (in dencer concentration) even of drinking water.
Mix the hydrogen peroxide with regular tap water and put your seeds in it. Proportions: 1 part of hydrogen peroxide (3%) compares to 5 parts of water = 0.5%. Learn more about it at this post at the weed forum
General information on cannabis seeds germination
In the above explanation germination seeds at room tempuratures is regularly discussed. Research shows seeds like warmth and moisture that makes for the perfect germination conditions. When we look at nature, this is not a neccessity. Outdoor growers are advised to saw directly on full open soil so the roots will not be hindered while developing.
Be aware of the fact that the hatchlings need protection from snails, birds, rabbits and other leaf eaters when germination from open outdoor soil. Germs can quickly turn into a nice snack for these anymals. Therefore you need to saw extra seeds, and put a transparrent cup over the germs. Use a copper ring to protect the germs from snails
Snails hate copper.
- Is to much moisture possible? YES! To much moisture can make your seeds or germs rot so keep this in mind.
- Don’t forget to lable.
- Cannabis seeds like dark conditions.
- Germation periods vary among species and conditions, up to a two week diffence.
The above information is based on personal grower experiences and can contain errors. Do you have different experiences or ideas for improvement? Let us know!
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The Best Way Germinating Marijuana Seeds?
We asked 8 Experts + 143 MSB Growers!
Do you think there is 1 way to make your ladies sprout? Think again!
We asked 8 Experts & 143 MSB Growers:
What is your Preferred Germination Method?
We were blown away by the number of variations we received!
Perhaps your new best way of Germinating Marijuana Seeds is amongst them!
- Study Best Way Germinating Marijuana Seeds
- Dr. Dina, Queen of cannabis
- Ed rosenthal
- James Loud, Loud Genetics
- Jennifer Martin, Cultivation Sector Consulting
- Jesce Horton, LOWD
- Melanie Carruthers, 7acres
- Ryan Douglas, Ryan Douglas Cultivation
- Rudy Ellenbogen. Whole Grow
- Preferred Germination Method MSB Community
- Conclusion: What is the Best Way to Germinate Marijuana Seeds?
Study on Best Way Germinating Marijuana Seeds
Here at Marijuana Seed Breeders, we get many questions. From Beginner to Expert.
We love helping growers.
In fact, we try to address frequently asked questions into articles so that everyone, even non-MSB Growers can benefit.
One of these questions is about germination: what is the best way for germinating marijuana seeds?
Interesting one, because perhaps is our best way, not your best way. Therefore we created the article How to germinate weed seeds.
In the article we give steps for 5 frequently used cannabis germination methods:
- Glass of water
- Wet towel
- Directly in soil
- Stone wool blocks
- Using a starter kit
We also give pros and cons to every method. So this should give you enough information to determine what is the best fit for your next growth.
Which Germination Method is the most used?
Every spouted seed counts. To more plants the better, right?
That’s why we are interested to understand how marijuana growers around the world germinate their cannabis seeds.
When we ask people this question we get a lot of different answers. Which germination method is the most used one?
We had an idea, but we didn’t know for sure.
It was time for a survey amongst our beloved MSB Community. We also reached out to experts in the field to learn more about their preferred method.
We were blown away by the number of enthusiastic replies! Both from our MSB community as well as the experts.
Yes, sure we received replies, just confirming one of the 5 methods.
But the larger group of people actually took the time to reveal their ‘secret’ to cannabis seed germination!
But first: let look at the statistics from our own research.
Results Preferred Marijuana Seed Germination Study
Without further ado, the most favorite germination method amongst 143 growers is:
#1. Wet Towel (37.3%).
#2. Other. 21.1% of the growers follow another germination routine.
#3. Directly in Soil. A surprisingly high percentage (19%) put their precious seeds directly in soil!
#4. Starter kits. 10% use starter kits (like Spongepot).
#5. Glass of water is the best way for 8.5% of the growers.
#6. Stonewool (3.5%).
Here is the breakdown in a chart:
Preferred Germination Method Experts
Ok, enough of the statistic, it’s germination time.
Let’s start with Expert advice!
First off: even though they were busy, we received kind feedback from the Experts. This shows again how approachable and awesome the people in our growing community are,
We received feedback from these experts from the field (sorted in alphabetical order):
#1. Dr. Dina, The Queen of Cannabis, Co-Owner of AHHS WeHo
#2. Ed Rosenthal, The Guru of Ganja
#3. James Loud, Founder of Loud Genetics Loud Seeds
#4. Jennifer Martin, Founder Cultivation Sector Consulting LLC
#5. Jesce Horton, Founder and CEO LOWD
#6. Melanie Carruthers, Director of Propagation 7ACRES
#7. Ryan Douglas, Cannabis Growth Consultant Ryan Douglas Cultivation
#8. Rudy Ellenbogen, Founder and CEO Whole Grow
Ready? Let’s dive right in!
Dr. Dina, The Queen of Cannabis, Co-Owner of AHHS WeHo
When someone gets a nickname from Snoop Dogg, and when that person is referred to as The Queen of Cannabis, the Mona Lisa of Mary Jane as well as The Queen of Weed AND the main character of the 8 season series Weeds is based on their person, then you know that you are dealing with a true expert.
I prefer to germinate My seeds in root gel (clonex) and stick them in cubes. Paper towels work well too, but I think the root gel gives the seeds the extra push to become a strong plant.
– Dr. Dina, The Queen of Cannabis
Ed Rosenthal, Author, Educator, Social Activist, And Legalization Pioneer
I use starter trays and plugs from iHort – EXcel T-50 and 32 Star Excel trays to start seeds. They come pre-moistened, with a little hole to drop a seed.
I use the 50 per tray when I will be transplanting within two weeks and the 32 per tray for growing up to 3 weeks.
When I’m using fresh seed, I just drop them into the hole in the cube.
With stale seeds, first I soak them in a 0.5% hydrogen peroxide (H2O2) solution for 3-4 hours. The recipe is 1 part drugstore 3% H2O2 to 5 parts water. This sterilizes their surfaces. Then they soak in mycos and liquid kelp solution for about 6 hours. Then they are placed in the cubes.
Upon first signs of germination, I water them with mycos and kelp to promote root growth. The next day they are watered with a weak combo of veg and flowering formula about 400 PPM.
– Ed Rosenthal, The Guru of Ganja
James Loud, Founder of Loud Genetics
Well it’s a loaded question because it depends on scale.
I sterilize in an h2o2 Soak then germinate in a jiffy #7 typically. However, large scale I prefer a needle/vacuum seeder to place the seeds evenly in the substrate.
Well and with autoflower I believe direct sow in optimal conditions can yield better results.
– James Loud, Loud Seeds
Jennifer Martin, Owner Cultivation Sector Consulting LLC
I use coco plugs. I gave up the wet paper towel method years ago because managing the moisture was too cumbersome.
I buy coco plugs that come in the 50-cell sheet, make a light nutrient mix, put all of the plugs in a pitcher of the nutrient mix, squeeze them to fully saturate them with the mix, put them back in the cell sheet, push a seed into each hole, and put a dome on the tray under the light.
Then I just keep the plugs moist. The seeds start to pop in about 3 days. Some take up to a week. I leave them in there until they overgrow the tray, then transplant into 3″ pots.
Jesce Horton, Founder and CEO, LOWD
I’m a water glass guy. I like to know before planting which seeds are more vigorous and then assess based on that benchmark throughout the growth process.
I carefully pull the seeds with a spoon and drop them into a coco mixture a day or two after they pop.
– Jesce Horton, LOWD
Melanie Carruthers, Director of Propagation, 7ACRES
Our processes at 7ACRES for seed germination use a combination of a glass of water and wet towel.