How To Germinate Hemp Seeds
For hemp farmers, knowing how to germinate hemp seeds is a critical skill that can make or break your harvest. Starting with a healthy seedling will save you time and money and ensure a strong, productive crop that is resistant to pests and diseases.
Fortunately, germinating hemp seeds is not difficult, but there are a few things you need to know in order to do it successfully. In this article, we’ll detail several effective germination methods you can use to get your CBD hemp crop started off on the right foot.
Paper Towel Method
The paper towel method is one of the most popular and effective ways to germinate hemp seeds. To use this method, all you need is a couple of paper towels, a container, and some plastic wrap.
Place a damp paper towel inside the container and put the seeds on the towel, spacing them roughly three to five centimeters apart. Place another moist paper towel over the seeds and cover the container with plastic wrap.
Keep the seeds in an area that is 71-77 degrees Fahrenheit, and check in periodically to make sure the paper towels remain moist but not too wet. Once you notice root tips emerging from the seeds, they are ready to be planted. However, if you wait too long to remove the seedlings, the root tips may grow into the paper towel, making them difficult to remove.
Starter Plug Method
Starter plugs are an excellent medium for germinating seeds, as you won’t have to move the delicate seedlings once they have sprouted. The medium is lightweight and suitable for aeration, water retention, root growth, and the plant’s overall health. It’s also easy to transplant into the soil when the time comes. If you’ve had bad luck with other germination methods, starter plugs might be the right choice for you. Here’s how to germinate hemp seeds with starter plugs:
Soak the plugs in tap water and lightly squeeze out some of the water so they are damp but not soaking wet. Place one seed in each plug, lightly cover the hole in the top of the plug with a bit of soil or peat, and place the plugs into a propagation tray. Cover the tray with a humidity dome and check in daily to ensure that the plugs remain moist.
Planting seeds directly into soil is the most natural method for germinating hemp seeds and is easy to do. By planting directly into the soil, you won’t have to move your delicate seedlings after they have sprouted.
Before planting the seeds, make sure that you are using the right soil. A seed-starting mix will have the right amount of nutrients to nourish the seedlings without overfertilizing them. Also, use very small pots when planting your seeds. It is easy to overwater your seedlings when using large pots.
Place the soil into the pot and use a pencil to poke a 10 to 15mm hole into the soil. Place a seed into the hole, lightly cover it with three to five millimeters of soil, and gently press down. Be sure to cover the seed entirely but do not bury it too deeply.
Lightly water the soil so that it is damp but not wet. Check in daily to ensure that the soil remains moist. If you live in an arid region, you can cover the top of the pot with plastic wrap to retain humidity.
Germinating CBD seeds in water is easy and straightforward but is not as effective as other germination methods. Still, it is a popular technique that many cultivators use.
- Fill a glass halfway with room-temperature water and place your seeds in the glass.
- Keep the glass in a temperate area and change the water with fresh tap water every two days.
- After three to four days, you’ll notice that your hemp seeds will start sprouting little tails—this means they’re ready to be planted.
Plant your seedlings before the roots get too long. Be cautious while taking the seedlings out of water. The root tails are fragile, and they may break.
Best Environmental Conditions for Germinating Feminized Hemp Seeds
The best temperature for germinating hemp seeds is between 71 and 78 degrees Fahrenheit, with 70 to 80 percent relative humidity. The soil for hemp seeds should be moist but not soggy or waterlogged. If the medium dries out too much, the seeds will die. Essentially, the goal is to mimic the typical springtime conditions in which seeds naturally germinate.
Once they have sprouted, the seedlings must receive plenty of light to grow well; direct sunlight is best. However, if you live in a very sunny area and your seedlings’ leaves may become sunburned. Try putting them under fluorescent lights instead, and slowly transition them to full sunlight.
Air circulation is also essential because hemp roots can easily drown or rot. They need oxygen to grow, so don’t overwater your seedlings, and don’t pack the soil too tightly. Use a light, fluffy seed-starting mix and water it lightly.
How to Germinate Hemp Seeds: Final Thoughts
Germinating hemp seeds is a simple task but can be complicated to master. They require a stable environment and a delicate touch to keep them healthy and happy. Luckily, by using any of the germination methods described in this article, you’ll be able to germinate your hemp seeds effectively.
Contact Fortuna Hemp for more information about how to germinate hemp seeds. While you’re here, shop our collection of premium feminized CBD hemp seeds.
What is your favorite germination method? Please share your thoughts in the comment section below.