Within a week or so you should see a seedling begin to grow from the soil.
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.
Some seeds germinate very rapidly while others can take a while, but generally, seeds should germinate in 3-10 days. If it’s been two weeks and a seed hasn’t sprouted, it’s probably a dud and won’t sprout.
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.
But if the seed you found looks decent, you might as well germinate it and see what sprouts.
Many marijuana growers start autoflowers early in the season, and at a different time than a regular crop, so keep the season and climate in mind when growing and harvesting—your plants still need warmth to grow, and rain can give them bud rot. Consider growing in a greenhouse to protect them.
Most experienced or commercial growers will not use feminized seeds because they only contain one set of genes, and these should never be used for breeding purposes. However, a lot of beginning growers start with feminized seeds because they eliminate the worry of having to deal with male plants.
Germinating your own garden seeds instead of purchasing seedlings is fun and saves you money to boot. However, seeds are delicate and may require coddling during germination and when transplanting them to their final location. There are two popular home gardener methods for germinating seeds:
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Starting Seeds in Soil
Unless you have a hydroponic garden, the soil is where your seeds are destined to live after sprouting. Starting your seeds directly in small pots or seedling trays filled with a good quality soil will eliminate one transplanting step.
Paper towels, filter paper or even newspaper provides an excellent medium for germinating seeds. They are pathogen-free and make it easy to control the moisture content for proper germination. This method also takes the guesswork out of knowing if your seeds have germinated since you can easily observe them.
Besides warmth, seeds also need consistent moisture in order to germinate properly. If you allow the soil to dry out after planting your seeds you could delay or even prevent germination.
But, I have had difficulty getting peppers and eggplant to germinate in the past since they prefer such high soil temperatures.
#2: Don’t try to plant old seeds.
Tips for How to Germinate Seeds for Seed Starting
How to germinate seeds easily and evenly isn’t difficult, it just requires you to incorporate some of these techniques into your process. And the good news is, when you have more success, it’s a lot more fun! Check out the resources below for additional help in starting your own organic plants at home.
The new seedlings will not be happy being trapped in a plastic bag and will become leggy (tall and spindly) quickly.
Print out this chart from Johnny’s Selected Seeds to keep with your seed supply.
Timing: You should be using a custom seed starting calendar that maps out what seeds to start when based on your average last frost date.