Germination is one of the first and most important weed cultivation stages. If you use seeds for growing marijuana, you need to germinate them before planting them into the soil. This process implies proper stimulation of the seed to facilitate germination of the plant matter inside. The seed shell cracks open during this process, allowing the sprouts to appear.
Research published in a scientific journal shows that germination is an intricate process affected by many factors, such as seed storage conditions, environmental conditions, and methods used to break dormancy. This article focuses on all major methods applied to prepare seeds for planting.
The paper towel method is undoubtedly the easiest and most popular approach to seed germination. This is what you need to do to germinate your seeds using this approach:
- Choose an unbleached paper towel and soak it in distilled water
- Take the seeds and place them on a wet towel. Make sure they are several inches away from each other
- Cover the seeds with another wet paper towel or fold the one you have several times
- Place the towel on a plate or into a plastic bag
- Store the paper towel at a comfortable room temperature for several days
- Once the discernible roots appear, the seeds are ready to be planted into the soil
This method is similar to the first one, the only exception being that it involves a plastic container. All you need to do is put the seeds on the wet paper towel and then place it inside a container. Next, find a dark cupboard and put the container there. This will allow the creation of a mini tropical climate for the seeds to germinate. Open the container from time to time and spray warm water onto the seeds to maintain optimal moisture.
Peat moss is a suitable medium for weed germination, as it is rich in organic materials and allows maintaining the proper environmental conditions. Its light and fluffy texture ensures a high water-holding capacity and is perfect for seed aeration. Eco-friendliness is an additional benefit of this method since peat moss is entirely organic and biodegradable. So, you will avoid unnecessary waste.
Using peat moss is very simple:
- Purchase peat moss pellets sold online or in department stores
- Soak dried peat moss with warm filtered water
- Insert the seeds into the holes and cover them with peat moss
- Place the peat moss into a container and store it in the suitable environmental conditions
- Wait for the seedling to emerge!
Coco perlite is a relatively new growth medium, which can serve as an alternative to traditional potting soil. It is made from coconut husks fiber and boasts perfect aeration, drainage, and moisture retention capacity. It can also retain water longer than peat moss, meaning that it will help maintain excellent moisture for your weed seeds.
Rockwool is also suitable for weed germination. This material is cheap and accessible, but it is less eco-friendly than peat moss and coco perlite. Rockwool also has a less acidic environment than needed for seeds to germinate, so the trick is to prepare it well before planting the seeds inside.
You need to add chemicals or lime juice to the water and then soak Rockwool in this pH-balanced water. Avoid squeezing the cubes, as excess water is needed for the seeds to germinate. Place the seeds inside, and you are done! You can store the cubes in plastic containers until the seeds are ready.
Hydroponics is an advanced soilless cultivation method known for its effectiveness. If you are a proponent of smart farming, hydroponics may be the best option for you. It involves using a special hydroponic system that maintains the perfect temperature, light, and moisture. Although the equipment is not cheap, it allows seeds to germinate quickly and ensures sterile conditions compared to the soil. Follow these steps if you choose hydroponics:
- The first step remains the same. Use a paper towel, Rockwool, or any other method to germinate cannabis seeds.
- Meanwhile, fill the bottom of the grow tray with an inch of distilled water or a solution containing seedling-strength nutrients.
- Set the required temperature and humidity levels.
- Place the seeds inside and wait.
Directly in Soil
Finally, you can use a time-proven method of planting the seeds into the soil. This method is natural, as this is how marijuana seeds grow in the wild. It allows avoiding unintentional damage to the seeds that may occur when you move them from the paper towel, Rockwool, or any other medium into the soil.
So, the process is straightforward. Prepare the soil with a PH of 6.0-7.0 and place the seeds inside. Make sure the soil is always moist enough for the seeds to germinate. Do not add nutrients at this stage to prevent nutrient overdose. Researchers warn that nitrogen addition may suppress growth in some plants. Therefore, mildly fertilized potting soil you can purchase online is enough for germination at this stage.
The most popular cannabis for growers
Each of the listed germination methods has been widely used and tested in practice. You can achieve excellent results using any of these methods as long as you stick to the recommendations. You can also try several methods simultaneously to determine what works for you. In this way, you will be able to choose the one matching your budget, skills, and time you are willing to dedicate to the germination process.