Sprouting Cannabis Seeds
The most important factors for successfully sprouting cannabis seeds are:
- Stabile temperature between 20-25 degrees Celsius
- Dark area
- Vitality of the seeds
There are several ways to sprout cannabis seeds. It's therefore important that you know how a cannabis seed is (morphologically) put together. The thing is that a cannabis seed can only drink/absorb water from one side, only the flat end on the other side of the tip of the seed can let water through. That's why it's important that this part of the seed has access to water. If the access to this part has been obstructed by a grain of sand or something alike, then not enough water can be absorbed to guarantee the viability.
Method 1: Seed in a glass of water and in medium after sprouting
With method 1 (my favorite method) the cannabis seed is first put in a glass of water at room temperature (between 20 and 25 degrees Celsius) for a maximum of 24 hours, then it can be potted in soil/coco/rockwool/other growth medium. When the seed lies in the water the glass has to be put away in a dark area where the temperature is also stable (20-25 degrees Celsius). In some cases the seed will be sprouted in the glass of water within 24 hours, this will show the beginning of a root, the so called 'tap root' or main root. Not every cannabis seed will sprout in a glass of water within 24 hours, but by providing water to the seed from all sides I am certain that the flat part of the seed has access to water, and thus can absorb water to initiate the sprouting process. Note: do not leave the seed in the water for longer than 24 hours as it could cause the seed to 'drown'. After 24 hour I recommend to put the seed in the medium, even if the taproot isn't visible yet.
Make sure that the medium is moist enough, and has a stable temperature as mentioned earlier. Place the sprouted seed about a half a centimeter deep in the medium, create a small hole for this and then put the seed in it with the taproot facing downward. Cover the hole with a thin layer of the growing medium, just enough so no light can reach the seed. Make sure that the layer isn't pushed down, but that it's a little loose so there will be no pressure/obstruction for the upcoming seed.
Method 2: Seed between tissues and in medium after sprouting
For those who prefer sprouting between tissues/paper towels need to apply method 2. With method 2, two plates are needed, a temperature between 20-25 degrees Celsius and tissues/paper towels. Wet a few tissues with lukewarm water and put them on a plate, make sure to drain any excess water. Subsequently spread the cannabis seeds out over moist tissues that are on the plate. Make sure that the seeds are well spread apart and don't touch each other. Then wet a few more tissues with lukewarm water and cover the top of all the seeds (also any excess water has to drain here as well). The last step is to cover everything with the second plate and put it away in a stable temperature of 20-25 degrees Celsius. This will create a dark and humid greenhouse effect in between the plates and will stimulate the sprouting process. Check every day if the seeds are 'popped', meaning if the taproot is visible, because then the sprouting has been successful. Make sure that the tissues stay moist and don't dry out, to prevent this you can spray lukewarm water on the tissues. If the seeds are sprouting, and the main root is visible then the seeds can be placed in the medium. Ensure that the medium is well moistened and in a stable temperature between 20 to 25 degrees Celsius.
Place the sprouted seed about a half a centimeter deep in the medium, create a small hole for this and put the seed in it with the main root down. Cover the hole with a thin layer of the growing medium, exactly enough so no light can reach the seed. Make sure not to press the layer down, but that is sits loose so there's no pressure/obstruction for the upcoming seed.
Method 3: Seed directly in the soil (sprouting directly in the medium or in a germination plug)
Method 3 is that method that shows you if the seed is sprouting when it's coming above the growing medium. In contrast to method 1 and 2, you cannot see if the seed indeed 'popped', since the process is in the medium. With this method the seed is put a half centimeter deep in the medium. Create a small hole for this and put the seed in it (with the flat side up). Cover the hole with a thin layer of the growing medium, exactly enough so no light can reach the seed. Make sure that the layer isn't pressed, but that it sits loosely so it cannot cause any pressure/obstruction for the upcoming seed. Ensure that the medium is well moistened, and in a stable temperature between 20-25 degrees Celsius.
Cannabis seeds usually sprout above the medium after 24 to 96 hours, from the moment the (sprouting) seed is placed in the medium. These baby cannabis plants are then called Cannabis seedlings. Appropriately I will elaborate further on this in the next edition of the ASC newsletter, and in my column and will talk about taking care of cannabis seedlings. So keep a close eye on my newsletter!