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Germination frustration!

rocks911

Active Member
I havent been growing long and haven't really perfected germination. I have to wonder about the viability of the seeds from my seed source because the track record of germination isnt great whereas random bag seeds germinate easily at nearly 100% success rate. Purchased feminized seeds have a much lower success rate.

I followed the instructions that the seller recommended: Place in a shot glass with purified water. Wait 24-72 hours for a little "tail" to show. Transfer to media (peat pellets/soil) with the tail down. Be sure to not plant deeper than 1/2 inch and lightly cover the seed over.

And heres the frustrating part... after successfully managing the 1st part and seeing a tiny tail and planting it the seller goes on to say "in no time a shoot will appear and when it does the seedling will need light".

So my understanding is that seeds germinate in the dark and no light is needed until a shoot appears. The problem is the interim period of time when unfortunately the shoot hasnt appeard. What is the best environment for seeds planted in peat that have not pushed up a shoot? Darkness? Under a light?

1840788
 

rocks911

Active Member
Thanks Doctor,
Maybe a seedling warming mat?
I put them under the light to warm a bit but maybe they prefer to have a warm bottom rather than a warm top. I suppose thats why warming mats are even a thing.

I know I need to get better at this!
 

rocks911

Active Member
It might be that they didnt sprout quite enough. 2 of the 3 seeds were split and a tiny little tail was evident after 30 hours in the shot glass. Hoping to get the 3rd to sprout and hoping that the tails on the other two became more pronounced. After a day in the paper towel between two ceramic plates all three were showing a small tail. The two that popped 1st hadnt really grown a more significant tail after their time in the paper towel and seeing as how all three had sprouted I transferred them to the peat. That was two days ago. Im hoping to see some progress today or tomorrow.

This stuck in neutral phase sucks.
 

Dwight Monk

420 Support
420 Staff
I soak for 24 hours (they should sink after awhile if they viable) then they go into my soil less than 1/2" deep in yogurt cups and put them on top of my Modem for heat. 90-95% of them work for me, as you will get a bad seed from time to time.
 

rocks911

Active Member
Setting the cups on a modem...priceless. The inventiveness of growers never ceases to amaze.

Im borrowing that idea, its a reliable source of low-grade heat. Thanks for sharing
 
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Dwight Monk

420 Support
420 Staff
Setting the cups on a modem...priceless. The inventiveness of growers never ceases to amaze.

Im borrowing that idea, its a reliable source of low-grade heat. Thanks for sharing
They usually pop thru in 3 days or less, sometimes 5 days for stubborn ones or if they turn the wrong way.
 

carcass

Well-Known Member
It is important to get them under a light very soon after they pop out of the ground,so they don't stretch-And cfl's or led bulbs (not your big grow light) need to be about 5-6" above the seedling-too far away and they will stretch 2-3" overnight.
You want the growth to happen at the top of the seedling,not on the stem.
 

Dwight Monk

420 Support
420 Staff
:adore: Thanks so much for helping a newbie.

I gotta learn to chill through this part of it, I get so anxious.
Yes learn to chill now............. otherwise you are going to go bonkers throughout the grow and defeat the whole purpose of it ;) :19: it's a learning process that takes awhile before you sorta feel like you know what you are doing.
 

HugePeckerhead

Active Member
Yes learn to chill now............. otherwise you are going to go bonkers throughout the grow and defeat the whole purpose of it ;):19: it's a learning process that takes awhile before you sorta feel like you know what you are doing.
I remember my first plant. Literally every 5 seconds I was checking it making sure i was doing EVERYTHING by the book. We see one thing different from the previous time we looked and go in complete panic mode.
 

Oldbear

Well-Known Member
It is important to get them under a light very soon after they pop out of the ground,so they don't stretch-And cfl's or led bulbs (not your big grow light) need to be about 5-6" above the seedling-too far away and they will stretch 2-3" overnight.
You want the growth to happen at the top of the seedling,not on the stem.
Exactly this.
 

jimbobdaz

Well-Known Member
Looks like you have good advice already... myself, i put them straight in moist compost without soaking first and keep them moist, they then go straight under my t5 which is on an 18/6 timer so as soon as they pop there is the same light cycle as throughout veg
 

Buds Buddy

Well-Known Member
I plant my seeds directly in the media in a 12 oz. cup & them put a clear 2nd cup over the top to create humidity. I've had 100 % success this way. Seeds are above ground in 3 - 5 days every time.
One thing I didn't hear anyone mention. When you drop your seeds in water & then the paper towel aren't you suppose to wait til the tail is about 1/2" long before planting in soil ? That's what I've always heard & done it that way a few times with great results. As far as the heat part. Most the time I sit the cups on top of my lights in my tent; but I'm using LED's not CFL's. CFL's are OK to start a plant but you'll need more light to get a good yield. Then again you could use about 10 - 12 6500K 23 watt CFL bulbs & get 2 oz. off a plant. Best bang for your buck are QB's & COB lights; but even a cheap LED is better than CFL's. A Cheap LED & 4 CFL's & you'll do OK to grow 2 plants.
 

rocks911

Active Member
Thanks Buds, Ive never heard the 1/2" long tail thing. If thats accurate then I pulled them too early.

I hate to ask this question but is it possible for seeds to drown,for lack of a better term, or otherwise become non-viable at some point in water? The place I purchased my seeds indicated that the appropriate time to sit in a shot glass was 24-72 hours. Ive also heard from another source that they should not be submerged for more than 32 hours. I know 32 is pretty arbitrary, but its so arbitrary I thought it might be right.
 
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Buds Buddy

Well-Known Member
I've heard 1 day; I've seen people leave them 5 days. A lot of people just get the paper towel moist & put the seed in the center of the folded paper towel. Then stick it in a baggie & the baggie will create the humidity. You can lay a baggie just about anywhere (Modem, back of TV, on the inside of the lamp shade, etc.) to keep things warm. In about 3 days you get a 1/2" long tail & plant the seed. Never the less, the older the seed the harder it is to get it to germinate because the outer shell gets thicker & harder. Because of that it can take longer for them to germ. & sometimes you'll get a dud. It could take 2 weeks with a really old seed to soften that outer shell.
 

Buds Buddy

Well-Known Member
Looks like you have good advice already... myself, i put them straight in moist compost without soaking first and keep them moist, they then go straight under my t5 which is on an 18/6 timer so as soon as they pop there is the same light cycle as throughout veg
This is pretty much the way I do things also but with different lights. Has always worked well for me. Only had 2 bad seeds out of about 100 so far so I'm good with that.
 
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