This is the beauty of seeds—often, you can tell which plants or genetics will thrive right from the get-go. This will help you determine which plants you want to take cuttings from for clones or for breeding if you want to create a seed bank of your own.
To get the buds found in medical and recreational stores, female cannabis plants are grown in an environment without males—or the males are removed from the area before they release pollen—so the females don’t create seeds. Females can then focus their energies on producing buds and not seeds—this high-potency marijuana is traditionally known as “sinsemilla,” meaning “seedless.”
Once cannabis seeds are mature, the female plant begins to die, and seeds are either dropped to the ground where they grow into new cannabis plants next spring, or the seeds are harvested for processing into seed oil or food products, or stored so they can be sown in the ground later and become the next generation of plants.
A lot of classic weed strains that have been around for a while come in feminized form. Some popular fem seeds are:
With cloning, you don’t have to get new seeds every time you want to grow another plant—you just take a cutting of the old plant—and you don’t have to germinate seeds or sex them out and get rid of the males.
Most cannabis plants begin flowering when the amount of light they receive on a daily basis reduces. Outdoors, this happens when the sun starts setting earlier in the day as the season turns from summer to autumn. Indoor growers can control when a plant flowers by reducing the daily amount of light plants receive from 18 hours to 12 hours.
Pros and cons of using cannabis seeds
These are referred to as “bagseeds” and whether or not you can grow one will depend on where it came from.
Plants grown from seed can be more hearty as young plants when compared to clones, mainly because seeds have a strong taproot. You can plant seeds directly into an outdoor garden in early spring, even in cool, wet climates.
The paper towel method also has its risk, as the fragile seedlings can be damaged during the potting process. The tiny roots can also get tangled in the paper towels, so make sure to move the seeds to potting soil before roots grow too long. Use your hands or tweezers to gently remove each seed from the paper towels and place them in a prepared growing medium.
Germination itself is a crucial aspect of cannabis cultivation. The seed germination process is the foundation of every marijuana plant, and steps can be taken to boost successful popping. For example, some cultivators improve germination attempts by soaking seeds in 1% hydrogen peroxide or a compost tea for 12 hours beforehand to kill any dangerous pests.
To germinate seeds this way, lay one paper towel on top of a countertop, place a few seeds, and cover them with a second paper towel.
Whether you’re planning an indoor cultivation or outdoor grow, it’s best to germinate your seeds indoors. It’s easier to maintain proper temperature, light exposure, and moisture inside, and you can protect your seeds from the elements. Indoor germination, whether using soil or paper towels, will ensure your cannabis seeds have the best chance for survival.
The environment in which seeds germinate also plays a role in the outcome. While there are several different germination methods, each requires proper moisture, minimal handling, and warm springtime temperatures between 68-72 degrees Fahrenheit.
Place the soil in a small pot and use your finger or a pencil to push a small hole in the dirt, a bit more than half an inch deep. Insert the seed into the hole and bury it with soil. From this point on, don’t touch your seed. The young plant is fragile and knows how to position itself in the soil bed.
The seeds should start sprouting in about two days, though older seeds can take up to a week to sprout. You can remove them from the water and place them in the soil at any point once they’ve sprouted. Once the roots are about five millimeters long, they need to be planted.
Preparing to germinate cannabis seeds
You can also germinate your seeds by placing them in water. It’s slightly faster than the soil method, but you need to adjust your environmental factors accordingly. Remember, successfully germinating seeds requires a perfect balance of ideal growing conditions. When germinating in water, seeds need only 24-48 hours to pop their stems, though cultivators can keep them soaking for up to a week as needed. Water germination is faster because the seed gets all the moisture it needs immediately, and the shell softens and cracks more easily after soaking.
Monitor your soil every day and keep it moist. Within four to seven days, you should see tiny stems sprouting from the soil.
Plant a seed or two in each pot, making sure to keep the pots moist. Once the plants sprout, you can transplant them in their Jiffy Pot to a container or to a raised bed or garden plot.
DripWorks is happy to provide this primer on how to germinate marijuana seeds fast. These methods can get you and your seeds off to a good start.
Some folks like to germinate their seeds in Jiffy Pots. You can buy these at nurseries and other places as little round disks.
Also known as seed starters, germination stations are like mini greenhouses. They include a tray filled with soil and a heat pad underneath to keep the soil warm.
Germination simply means getting a seed to sprout a taproot, which will serve as its main root into the soil as it grows. For the best results, start with the best seeds you can afford to buy online or get from friends.
How long does it take to germinate marijuana seeds? Typically, it will take anywhere from a couple of days to up to a week to see your seeds start to turn into plants.
Lots of folks like this simple, direct method. Simply soak your seeds overnight in a glass of lukewarm water. The next day, plant them directly in the ground, containers or wherever you plan to grow them.
The paper towel method is a favorite for many home growers. Simply take two pieces of paper towel. Moisten them with water. Then place your pot seeds in between the two layers of moist paper towels.
There are five basic germination methods that are popular. With any of these methods, remember that seeds will need adequate warmth, moisture, and air to germinate properly. Generally, cannabis seeds like a temperature of 70° F to 90° F for sprouting.