How To Tell If Cannabis Seeds Are Bad

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There are several different methods for evaluating the quality of cannabis seeds. Here's a quick guide to evaluating the quality. How to Tell if a Cannabis Seed is Good Got a cannabis seed, but you’re not sure if it’s any good? No worries. By the end of this article you’ll know everything you need to get started. The Find out how to tell if your cannabis seed will be a winner or a flop. Here is how to distinguish between high-quality and low-quality seeds.

How to Check the Quality of Cannabis Seeds

A float test is an easy way to determine whether or not your cheap marijuana seeds are viable. The process involves dropping the seeds in distilled water. Then, wait at least two hours. If the seeds sink, they are healthy and ready for germination. If they float, they are not viable and are probably moldy or decaying. To ensure the viability of your cannabis seeds, always perform this test before planting.

The most reliable way to check the viability of seeds is to let them germinate. This can be time-consuming, especially if you are a commercial or large-scale grower. But it is a necessary process. To conduct the test, follow these simple steps. First, dampen a plain white paper towel with some distilled water. Next, place the seeds onto the towel. Make sure that the paper towel is completely covered with water. Then, place the seeds in a dark, cool environment.

Size

You might be wondering how to check the size of cannabis seeds before you purchase them. Although cannabis seeds may vary in size, shape, and colour, genetics play the biggest role in the results. The markings on the seed shells are purely cosmetic and have no bearing on the results. In fact, before the Dutch Passion seeds, people had been trying to predict the sex of cannabis plants by measuring the weight of individual seeds.

Fortunately, there are some simple ways to determine whether a cannabis seed is healthy and ready for planting. A healthy cannabis seed will have a teardrop body shape and be tapered at one end. If it veers away from this shape, it is probably a genetic flaw and will not germination properly. Also, don’t buy seeds that are flat or misshapen, because these may have germination problems.

Shape

There are some ways to tell if your cannabis seeds are of high quality. Often, weight and size go hand in hand, with heavier seeds indicating a higher quality. Additionally, a seed that has cracked or dents is probably not high quality. Seeds with these characteristics have low nutritional value. It’s important to purchase seeds that are healthy, so be sure to squeeze them before purchasing. Listed below are some tips on how to check quality cannabis seeds.

A simple test for cannabis seed health is to place it in water and feel its surface. If it sinks and stays there, then it’s healthy. Otherwise, it’s unhealthy. The seeds need to be kept dry for germination, so look for those that stay above water. Seeds that are shiny or have a sheen should be in good condition. Ensure that they’re able to hold their own weight.

Hardness

One of the things you may have noticed is the hardness of the seeds. Cannabis seeds come in different hardness and are used to help you identify the strain of cannabis. Cannabis seeds with stripes are an example of an Indica strain, and those with a solid color are Sativa strains. Harder seeds are also better to use in growing cannabis plants. However, you must be sure to avoid immature seeds because they will crack easily.

The first thing you should know about the hardness of marijuana seeds is that they hold only five percent of water. This is not enough to start the germination process. Once the germination process has begun, the hydrolytic enzymes will release stored water and soften the seed shell. This will enable the seed to split. While hardness of cannabis seeds varies between types, mature seeds shouldn’t have any trouble sprouting.

Color

Before you plant your cannabis seeds, you should first determine their quality. While most seeds will germinate in two to three days, high-quality ones may take as long as seven days. However, it is always better to be patient than to waste money on bad seeds. It is also important to note that the quality of your seeds depends on how much water they absorb. The best way to determine whether your seeds are high-quality is to squeeze them gently.

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Seeds that are larger in size are generally of higher quality. They store more energy and are more likely to mature. This results in larger plants with greater yields and higher levels of therapeutic and psychoactive effects. Another way to determine the quality of your seeds is to look at their size and shape. Large, symmetrical seeds are more likely to germinate than those that have a smaller or irregular shape. If they are too small, they are not high-quality.

How to Tell if a Cannabis Seed is Good

Got a cannabis seed, but you’re not sure if it’s any good? No worries. By the end of this article you’ll know everything you need to get started.

The legality of growing cannabis varies depending on where you live in the world. Know your laws.

What to Look for in a Healthy Cannabis Seed:

You can tell a lot about a seed’s health just by looking at it. Here are a few different things you should look for when deciding if a cannabis seed is good or not.

  • Darkened Color – Good cannabis seeds will be brown, black, and/or gray. White or green seeds are immature and unlikely to sprout. Your seed should also have stripes or spots all the way around.
  • Waxy Coating – A healthy seed will have a thin waxy coating around it. This coating should appear to have a slight sheen to it.
  • Hard Shell – You should be able to lightly squeeze a seed without it crushing. If a seed crushes easily between your fingers then the seed is likely dead or weak and will not grow well.
  • No Cracks – Inspect the entire seed to make sure there aren’t any small crack or holes. This will most likely cause the seed not to sprout.

Ways To Test Cannabis Seeds

Now that I’ve gone over a basic guide for what to look for I’ll give you a couple of ways that you can test your seeds.

Test Method #1: Floating Seeds in Water

This is a great test that works for many different seeds – not just cannabis. Take your seeds and drop them in a cup full of warm (not too hot) water then wait a couple of hours. If they sink then they’re probably good to go. If they won’t sink then they are probably dead and won’t grow.

Note: Only do this if you’re ready to germinate your plants. Otherwise, it could harm your seed. I cover germination in a later section.

Test Method #2: Just Go Ahead and Try to Germinate the Seed

I know this seems obvious, but it really is the best information I really could give. If you really want to know if a cannabis seed is able to germinate then go ahead and try germinating it – what do you really have to lose? Not quite sure how to germinate a seed? No worries. Here’s a quick guide:

How to Germinate a Cannabis Seed

Germinating a seed simply means getting the plant to sprout from the seed. It’s the first step in your cannabis seed’s journey to a full grown plant. There are several ways to go about this.

One way is to simply plant it in your soil and see if a plant pops up. It’s old school, but no one can deny its simplicity. Plant the seed about 1/4″ deep and wait.

Another way is to put the seeds on a damp paper towel. Make sure the paper towel is damp, but not soaking wet. If it dries out you can add a few drops of water to the paper towel. Leave the paper towel in a dark place. The amount of time is going to vary among strains. Some may take only 2 days while others could take longer. Continue to check them once a day.

How to Tell if a Cannabis Seed is Male or Female

Unfortunately, there is no way to know if a cannabis seed is going to be male or female simply by looking at it or doing a simple test. This is a bummer since most people don’t want male cannabis plants in their garden.

If you want feminized seeds then you’ll have to buy them from a reputable seed bank. Make sure they say feminized – if they don’t say it then they probably aren’t.

If all you’ve got is a bag seed then the only way to find out if it’s going to be male or female is to grow it.

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Can My Cannabis Seed Go Bad / Expire?

The short answer is yes, but if you store your seeds properly they can stay viable for years and years. Moisture, UV degradation, and extreme temperatures could all affect the quality of your seeds.

If you plan to store your seeds for a long period of time make sure to keep them in an airtight container in a dark area. Ideally, seeds should be stored in a climate controlled area (like inside your house instead of in a shed or garage. One study showed laboratory-sealed cannabis seeds were still viable after 19 years.

Conclusion

It’s nice to know what to look for, but in the end the best test is just to put it in soil. If you’re using bag seeds then you never really know what you’re getting anyways. If you’ve bought your seeds from a legitimate seed bank then you shouldn’t have to worry about it.

How To Tell If Cannabis Seeds Are Bad

Published: June 28th, 2019
Categories: Cannabis Info

If you want to grow great cannabis, you gotta have great seeds! Start your grow with poor seeds, and not only will you miss out on that top-tier harvest, but you’ll have wasted a lot of crucial time and energy. Given how important the distinction is between seeds of high and low quality, it’s vital you know how to tell the good ones from the bad. So, just how do you recognise a high-quality seed?

WHY IT MATTERS WHERE YOU SOURCE YOUR CANNABIS SEEDS

Before we offer our tips on distinguishing the winners from the duds, you should know that where you source your seeds is probably the most important variable in your entire grow. The best case scenario is to source your seeds from a legal, reputable seedbank. If you buy from industry leaders like Zativo, not only will you know that your seeds will germinate, but you’ll be able to view information about strain characteristics such as flowering time, height, and effect once smoked.

On the other hand, not all would-be cannabis cultivators have access to seeds of this calibre. It is not uncommon for smokers to receive a seed (or several) in the bag their dealer threw at them before racing away with a wad of cash. Here is why planting these seeds is probably not a good idea.

To start, the fact that your dealer sold you seedy weed immediately points to issues in quality and processing. It’s likely your weed was accidentally pollinated by a male, otherwise it shouldn’t have any seeds at all.

Moreover, these seeds likely won’t germinate as they will be immature or of poor quality in general. Weak genetics means your mature plant and final yield are bound to suffer, no matter how great of a grower you are. And unlike seeds sourced from seedbanks, you’ll have no way of really knowing what you’re about to grow. Any seed company worth its salt will guarantee germination rates well into the 90% range; bagseed, on the other hand, all comes down to chance.

HOW TO SPOT QUALITY SEEDS

Regardless of where you source your seeds, once you get your hands on some, how can you ascertain their quality? Here’s what to look out for:

Just by glancing over your seeds, you can already get a fairly good idea of their quality. Colour is probably the first thing you will notice, with healthy seeds normally having a darker shell. High-quality seeds may also have some natural “tiger stripes” or speckles, and can range between dark brown, grey, and almost black.

On the contrary, immature seeds literally pale in comparison, with green or light-grey-coloured shells. Some almost appear ivory white. If your seeds look anything like this, it is likely they will not germinate. Even if you’re able to germinate some immature seeds, it will take much longer, and your cannabis plants will probably not turn out as great.

Good seeds will normally have a shiny coat as well. To verify this, bring your seeds under a light. You should see a glistening, shiny effect on the shell that makes your seeds look like tiny pearls or marbles. If your seeds have a rough or dull appearance, they are normally of lesser quality.

• Hard and smooth surface

Good seeds should be quite resilient and firm to the touch. You can test your seeds by taking one between two fingers and giving it a slight squeeze. Under normal duress, the shell of the seed shouldn’t crumble, break, or bend. If the shell doesn’t feel solid, but instead easily breaks or feels soft to the touch, it is old and will probably not germinate. Likewise, if the shell isn’t smooth and shiny, but instead has cracks and holes, the seeds are probably bad as well.

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HOW TO TEST YOUR SEEDS FOR QUALITY AND GERMINATION RATE

If you’re still unsure if your seeds are duds or not, or if you’re ready to just get started with your grow, you can always go ahead and get germinating! Checking their appearance is one thing, but these tests will tell you if your seeds actually pop or not.

• The water glass float test

A classic! The float test isn’t exactly rocket science, but it yields consistent results. Here is how to do it:

1. Fill a glass or jar with bottled or distilled water. Clean tap water also works.

2. Put your seeds in the glass with the water. There are only two outcomes for your test: sink, or float. Those that hit the bottom of the glass are likely of good quality, while those that remain afloat are probably not going to germinate or be all-star performers.

3. Now it’s time to wait; give your seeds at least two hours before coming to a conclusion about their quality. The reason for this is that good-quality seeds with a more resistant shell can take a while to soak up the water, causing them to float for a short while at first. So make sure to be patient when performing this test—you don’t want to act too soon and toss out otherwise healthy seeds!

Important tip: Only do the float test once you’re ready to plant your seeds. Once they’ve soaked in water, you can’t put them back in storage. You need to germinate them. So, if you have a whole bunch of seeds, only test as many as you can actually germinate and grow.

• The ultimate test: just plant your seeds

Maybe you don’t feel the need to do any testing, instead throwing caution to the wind in hopes that your seed will sprout. In this case, you can go ahead and plant your seeds in soil and wait to see a tiny stalk of green appear. High-quality seeds like those from Zativo will likely germinate in 2–3 days this way. Some strains, such as certain sativas, could take a bit longer, up to 7 days depending on the strain. But the bottom line here is that quality seeds will pretty much always germinate. Planting them in soil and seeing them break through the surface is a good sign you have some quality seeds on your hands!

HOW LONG CAN YOU KEEP CANNABIS SEEDS?

If you’re like most hobby growers, you may at some point end up with more seeds than you can actually grow at one time. As such, longer-term storage becomes a priority. But how long can you even store them? Do cannabis seeds go bad?

Stored properly, you can keep cannabis seeds viable for a very long time. However, moisture, exposure to light, and high temperatures could spoil your seeds and shorten their period of viability significantly. If you buy from a good seed company, your seeds will often come in a vial with a lid that also contains desiccant; this way, your seeds can stay good for a long time. To properly store your seeds, it’s best to keep them in a dark and cool place, such as a cupboard. In this setting, seeds can potentially stay viable for years.

CAN YOU TELL THE SEX OF YOUR SEED?

Another disadvantage of getting seeds from an unreliable source is that you won’t know their sex. Most growers, unless they need males for breeding purposes, will immediately toss out any males after identifying them to prevent pollination of females. This issue can be avoided entirely by purchasing feminized seeds from a reputable provider. These seeds will, of course, only sprout females, which is what you want. But if you obtained a mystery bag of seed, there is unfortunately no way to tell outright if your seeds are male or female.

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