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cannabis germination guide

If growing male and female cannabis seeds, they’ll start to show their sex organs, or “pre-flowers,” after 8-10 weeks from germination.

Marijuana seeds can be acquired from an array of sources and can vary in quality. For more info on how to buy marijuana seeds, check out our Guide to buying cannabis seeds.

Germination is the process in which a seed sprouts and begins to grow into a new plant. Also referred to as “popping,” germination is the very first step in starting your weed grow.

Transplanting germinated cannabis seeds

Even if your seed sprouts fast and grows vigorously, it still has roughly a 50/50 chance of being female and producing buds, instead of turning out to be a male.

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.

Additionally, every long-time grower will tell you that clones degrade over time.

As we’ve mentioned, cannabis is a dioecious plant, meaning male and female reproductive organs appear on different plants.

Two or three weeks after germination, your young seedlings should be ready for their new home. At this point you have two options; transplanting them into soil pots, or taking on the challenge of hydroponics. You’ll know when the seedlings are ready to be moved because the root system should start to poke out of the bottom of the wool blocks. As long as the roots haven’t begun to engulf the bottom half of the wool block, they will seek out water and nutrients in their new surroundings and continue to grow downwards.

Often overlooked, it is all too easy to assume that the vegetative and flowering stages of cannabis growth are the most critical parts of the plant’s life cycle. However, with the chance of failure high unless you know what you’re doing, poor planning when it comes to germination can make or break your next grow. Giving your cannabis seeds the best possible start on their journey to bulging buds is a surefire way to encourage a healthy and robust plant.

Before you can be met with bountiful hauls of dank buds, there are several stages of cannabis growing that take precedence. Unless you can successfully germinate cannabis seeds, you won’t have a plant to harvest. Give your seeds the best possible start in life by reading our definitive guide to germination.

USING STONE WOOL BLOCKS

Maintaining the ideal temperature (between 22–25°C/71–77°F) and moisture for germination is tricky. Leaving seeds out in the open environment or on a windowsill is far from ideal; a DIY climate-controlled cupboard would do a much better service. A warming mat is perfect for maintaining a constant temperature, but it doesn’t tackle the issue of moisture.

After 3–5 days, the seeds will start to open, and you should see tiny white tips appear. Once these roots reach 2–3mm in length, use extreme care to transfer them from the water to pre-prepared soil pots.

To avoid disappointment, seeds that have a darker colouration stand a better chance of germinating, while pale green or white seeds are likely to fail. Even if dark seeds look slightly damaged, they should be planted anyway. There is a good chance they will still germinate, even if the outer shell is somewhat crushed.

The Royal Queen Seeds Feminized Starter Kit contains:

With a bigger container, you will need to wait longer between waterings, and during that time your plant roots will be getting reduced oxygen.

Within the first week of germinating seeds, you will notice that some seeds germinate right away and others take a little bit longer. This can be caused by a lot of things, from the age of the seed (old seeds have worse germination rates and tend to take longer) to simple chance. The amount of time does not necessarily have anything to do with how healthy your plant will be in the long run.

Your cannabis seedlings and clones will definitely survive in a bigger container; they just won’t grow as fast for the first few days or weeks because they aren’t getting as much oxygen.

Your Cannabis Seedling’s First Few Weeks

Protect yourself! Always use a mask, goggles and gloves when working with Rockwool.

The cotyledons were already created as part of the plant embryo in the seed itself, so the cannabis seedling doesn’t have to grow them. In fact, the emerging first leaves are what break apart the shell after it’s cracked open by the taproot, as pictured here.

How do I know if my seeds are good?

Remember: If grow lights feels too hot to your hand after 10 seconds, they’re too hot for your marijuana seedlings