Germination of cannabis (marijuana) seeds

There are so many ways to germinate cannabis seeds in indoors. Our article will introduce you to the easiest and most reliable ones. But first let’s take a closer look at the marijuana seed and see what it hides.

A cannabis seed is essentially an embryo of a future plant. It is even rolled up inside the shell in a similar pose. Inside the nut you’ll find..:

The cotyledons,

the primary leaves,

a root,

the root sheath,

the tip of the shoot.

The seed also contains a reserve of necessary nutrients for the first period of sprout life. But let’s move on from theory to practice and look at the basic methods of “awakening” a cannabis seedling.

Preparing to germinate cannabis seeds lying around
It is not always the case that the germination cycle is started as soon as the grower receives the seeds. Quite often they have been stored for a while (sometimes for a few years). In this case, it is better to make a little preparation before proceeding to direct germination. We will list several methods of how to do this. Keep in mind, you do not need to use them all at once, choose the one that best suits your particular situation. Also note that you should only use bottled or standing water for 3 days.

If the seeds have been stored for six months or a year

In this case, the worst thing that could happen is that the shell of the seed has become harder. In such a situation, the sprout may have difficulty shedding its helmet and sprouting. To help it, simply soak the nut in a glass of water, then the shell will soften. But do not keep it in water for more than 24 hours, as a lack of oxygen may set in.

If the seeds have been lying around for more than a year

In this situation, more serious measures may be needed, but they are still easy to implement. The basic idea is to stimulate the start of life processes by oxygenating the nut, to give it a natural “signal” that it is time to sprout, or to use growth hormones.


In this case, the best solution is to soak the seed in a solution of hydrogen peroxide (3-4 drops of peroxide per glass of water). This will help, firstly, to create a sterile environment and protect the seedling from disease, and secondly, saturate the nut with atomic oxygen.

You can also do without peroxide, using an ordinary aquarium compressor.

Nature’s signal

Irradiating the seed with red light is good for stimulating germination. This is due to the presence of a pigment such as phytochrome in the plant (even at the seed stage). By catching the rays of this range, the nut “understands” that it is time to “wake up”. This method can be combined with others.

Growth hormones

A number of drugs are very good at stimulating germination. Examples are “Epin” and “Kornevin”. But it is better not to use them, as you can easily disrupt the hormonal background of the sprout. The ideal solution would be to place the seed in a suspension of chlorella, which is sold at any store for gardeners. This is a 100% natural, algae-based supplement, so you needn’t worry about overdoing it.

Hemp seeds and sprouts love high humidity (about 70%), but that does not mean you have to turn a whole grow box into an aquarium. Simply take a half of a plastic bottle or a clear disposable cup, make a few holes in it for ventilation, and cover the place where the seeds are planted. This way you will create a near perfect microclimate.

Now you have to wait for the first shoots to appear. This usually takes 3-4 days (sometimes more than 7 days). It is advisable to keep the greenhouse until the newborn plants are stronger (about a week).

How do I water the cannabis sprout?

For the first 3-5 days, the plant feeds on its own resources and does not need additional moisture. The most important thing is not to let the soil dry out completely. Once a day (before turning off the light at night) with a sprayer is enough to do this. Note, this should never be done before turning on the lamps, as the plant can simply burn. When moisture gets on the foliage, the stomas close, blocking the ability of the sprout to cool itself. Also, do not allow the moisture level to drop catastrophically (less than 40%).

The first watering should be done when the sprout forms its first pair of leaves. This usually happens a few days after sprouting. Please note that it’s better to water around the sprout rather than under the stem, increasing the diameter of the watering circle with time, this will stimulate the roots to grow and try to get more water. You don’t need a lot of water, just enough to keep the soil only slightly moist.

If you notice that the leaves of the sprout weakened and began to hang down, this is a sure sign of overwatering. It’s okay, just give it a day or two to dry out. The main thing is not to get root rot, which is a certain death for your ward.

It is also very important not to water the seedling with ordinary water, but to let it stand for at least 3 days so that all the chlorine has time to evaporate.

How can I tell if a cannabis seedling is underwatered?

Outwardly, it looks almost the same as overwatering – the leaves fade. But there are characteristic differences. In the case of excess moisture, the leaves will just look wilted. But if there is a deficit of water, the leaves may become deformed, change color and dry out.

A truer sign is the condition of the soil. If its top layer (3-4 cm) remains completely dry for more than 24 hours, the plant begins to signal problems with its appearance.

In general, underwatering is less dangerous than overwatering. The seedling will be back to normal very quickly once it has had its fill of moisture.

Fertilizer for cannabis seedlings
If you use purchased soil, then at the sprouting stage (the first 2-3 weeks) it is better to do without fertilizers at all.

Light for marijuana sprouts

One of your most important tasks in this regard is to avoid over-pulling the plant. Otherwise it will grow weak and thin.

You want to give the seedling as much light as possible, and place the lamp as close as possible. But if you use a DNAT, you should do it with extreme caution. They are very hot, and the temperature above 28 degrees is already in the stressful range for a young plant. Ideally, you should use ESL or LED, which heat the air much less.

That’s it. Now you know enough to help hemp enter this world and take root. What to do for the rest of the life stages? You’ll learn about that in our other articles.