Contributed by: MisterIto
There are different methods that prove successful:
Seeds can be placed between folded, wet paper towels that are kept
moist and warm in an area between 70-85 degrees, such as on the top of
the refrigerator. After a period of 48 hours to 2 weeks, the vast
majority of viable seeds will crack open with a white root tip
emerging. At this point, the seed is gently placed in the growing
medium approximately 1/2 inch deep with the root tip pointed downward.
Seeds can also be placed directly into the grow medium with the
pointed end facing downwards to germinate without the transplanting
step. The medium is kept uniformly moist until the young seedling
emerges on the surface.
It is not necessary to provide light before the seedlings break the
surface, but it is beneficial to have strong light present from that
moment forward to prevent excessive stem elongation.
Fluorescent lighting is satisfactory with cool white or higher
color temperature tubes being preferable. Metal halide lighting is
beneficial, if heat and moisture are monitored.
*Seeds prefer high light conditions once they have become rooted. They will stretch under most floroescents.
How can I increase the germination rates of my seeds?
Contributed by: Lord Of The Strains
Submitted: March 30, 2004
Pre-soaking your seeds before planting them is a terrific way to
ensure a greater germination percentage and faster germination rates.
There are a few different methods of soaking seeds; the two most
popular being the “Paper-Towel Method” and “Standard” (soaking in a cup
or similar object), both of which yield similar results if done
correctly (taproot emerges in approx. 24 hrs.)
NOTE: Regardless of which method you employ, seeds should be soaked
in a dark, warm environment for the best results. Once the taproot
(tiny, white root-tip) emerges from the seeds, they are ready to be
planted into the growing-medium.
1. Paper-Towel Method:
MATERIALS: Paper-towels (at least 2 sheets), 2 plates/dishes (or similar object), warm water.
It involves placing the seed(s) onto a damp paper-towel (which is
placed on a plate/dish, or similar object), and covering them with
another damp paper-towel.
For best results, use water that is a bit warmer than
room-temperature (to compensate for any drop in temperature), and cover
the plate/dish with another plate/dish (to prevent heat from escaping,
as well as protect the seeds from light).
Also, using more than one sheet of paper-towel above and below the
seed(s) will yield better results, as well as adding more warm water to
the paper-toweling/bottom dish before covering the whole arrangement
with the optional second plate/dish.
WARNING: It is imperative that the seed(s) are removed from the
paper-toweling as soon as the taproot(s) has/have emerged; If the
seed(s) is/are left to soak for too long, delicate micro-roots can be
torn when the seed(s) is/are removed from the paper-toweling, which
will temporarily retard germination/growth as well as stress the plant
(which could possibly result in an unfavorable male/hermaphrodite).
2. Standard Soaking
MATERIALS: Cup/mug (one that retains heat well; i.e. ceramic coffee
cup), plate/dish/lid (big enough to cover cup/mug/etc.), warm water.
In this method, the grower places his/her seed(s) in a cup/mug of
some sort, which is filled with warm water. I use a ceramic coffee cup
- as it is a good conductor of heat - and I cover it with a ceramic
plate (again, to prevent heat from escaping, as well as shield seeds
For best results, use water that is a bit warmer than room
temperature (again, to compensate for any drop in temperature). It is
normal for the seed(s) to float on the surface; just let it/them soak
for a while then give it/them a little tap to make it/they sink (the
best, most viable seeds will sink to the bottom). Although it is
virtually impossible to over-soak seeds using this method, seeds should
only be soaked until the taproot has emerged.
Both of these methods are equally effective if executed correctly.
Most seeds should show their taproots within 24 hrs., and all seeds
should show taproots within 48 hrs. (assuming you are using good,
TIP: (for soil-growers)
If you want to further increase your germination rates, simply
plant your seed(s) shallow; approx. 1-2 cm. deep. The seedling(s)
should break the soil-surface within 24 hrs., or 48 hrs. for the most
(again, assuming you are using good viable seeds – otherwise, it may
take another day or two). Once the seedling(s) has/have sprouted, add a
little extra soil at the base of the stem(s) for additional support and