SALUTATIONS MY GREEN SKUNK FRIENDS. It still amazes me all the time how many peeps just can’t seem to sprout their seeds, or if they do, they die quickly. I recently gave away 10 or 15 packs to some local peeps and I heard back from several of them that the seeds were “no good” heh heh … well … I happen to know that’s not true; and in fact, they have like a 95%+ viability rate. So, yep, it was them.
What I want to do today is go over “the rules” that lead to happy fast sprouts and healthy happy seedling plants. I’m also going to show you my easy way around sexing, that will allow you to sex your plants at 30 days for sure. Another aspect I want to tackle here today is getting the highest resin production/potency out of those seedling plants eventually down the road. Boom!
In the Beginning—Sourcing & Storing Your SeedsSo many potentially awesome plants lie in wait
Sourcing your seeds is uber important—duh—and growing random seeds that come out of good buds you smoked is fraught with big risk, and the biggest is that your females will actually turn out to be hermaphrodites pollinating your plants creating a shitload of useless seeds; useless because they too are hermaphrodite offspring. If you decide to go this route, get ready for disappointment.
Seed companies, that have been in business for more than 7 or 8 years with a good reputation are great sources for seeds. You don’t have to spend gawd-awful amounts of money to get great, reliable seeds. If you happen to have a nice bud of outdoor grown cannabis that has a few seeds here and there, select the seeds you want to try out from the lowest parts of the bud, as these stand a higher chance of actually being pollinated by real males earlier in the season. Seeds nearer the tops of the buds have a higher percentage of possible hermaphrodite pollination later in the season—you savvy?
STORING YOUR SEEDS
Really simple here my esteemed Earthlings; light-tight & air-tight & cool. Seriously, if you’re not going to germinate them for awhile then store them correctly, in the refrigerator ideally, as above stated by “cool” heh heh. This way if you “forget” to get to them for 10 years they will still likely be 80% viable or more when germinated. Those same seeds kept for a decade in baggies/jars just somewhere in the house, would likely be far less viable and more like 10-20% assuming the seeds were organically created. Okay— ‘nuf said 😊
It’s Germination Time
SEXUAL RATIOSWe do all loves our females
I take it as a good sign if I pop say 20 seeds, and at least 4 of them are males. This indicates two big things to me, from my perspective, and the first thing is that my environment is spot on and they are happy plants. The second thing is that these plants are highly likely to be sexually healthy as well. While we all love female plants—the more the merrier—when you get unusually high female ratios it can indicate potential hermaphroditic tendencies are a possibility. Unusually high male ratios can also be problematic, and while you may get say 2 females out of 10 plants those female plants are usually particularly sexually healthy—dominantly so—and a killer female that has these traits is superior in my opinion.
Your sprouting environment also has big effects when it comes to sexual ratios … too hot, too cold, too much nitrogen, too much phosphorous, limited spectrum lighting, temperature extremes … these things (and many more) can cause your plants to “choose their sex” to lean either male or female heavy. Hell man, growers knew about this stuff back in the 60’s; and in the 1970 edition of Drake’s – The Cultivator’s Handbook of Marijuana – this is all clearly laid out in the first few pages. Like I said above, sometimes it can also be a genetics-thing, where sexual ratios are skewed.
GERMINATIONA seedling heating mat and six-pack germinating flat
Here Are The “Road Rules” Of Good Germinating … Ready?
- Germinate directly in soil, under intense lighting (150w minimum & full spectrum).
- Make it warm, 72-86 degrees f. “daytime” and not below 62 at “night”.
- Use air circulation and air exchange. Keep humidity below 65% and above 40%.
- Plant seeds about ½ – ¾ of an inch deep and water gently.
- Use “The Goldilocks Method” watering, not too much … and not too little.
Adhere to those rules above and you will rock and roll. Don’t submerge your seeds in a glass of water or use paper towels to germinate seeds; my .02, both of those environments are unnatural to the little things. The most vigorous, happy, and healthy sprouts come straight out of soil, in my experience—it’s not my way, it’s Mother Nature’s way, brought into container form. A good quality seedling heating mat using a plate (slight insulation) and a six-pack flat (see photo) is a huge boon, especially regarding germination times, and most of my seeds are breaking ground in 3 or 4 days after planting.
Easy Sexing the Rev WayFinding females within 30 days after sprouting
This one is super easy, and I have told you guys this in previous writings, but I want to make sure nobody misses it that needs to know about it. Simply use a 12/12 photoperiod while sprouting your plants and keep them growing under that photoperiod for 10 days before placing them under a normal vegetative photoperiod. At the 30 days above ground mark, examine your plants closely with a mag-glass and you will see signs of sexual expression. Not recommended for autoflowering type genetics!
Getting the Maximum Potency and YieldGrowing from seeds makes a world of true exotics possible
You really want to keep at least a few key(stone) things in mind for maximizing your genetic potential when it comes to growing your cannabis. I’m going to throw a basic list at you here, and away we go…
- Indoors don’t start to flower plants until they are at least 55 days old; and 60 days is my personal choice here. This has everything to do with resin production, just sayin’ heh heh. Clones, or clones of clones of etc. are all the same age as the seedling mother-plant would be (if still alive or not).
- Always a great idea to flower clones in containers, and seedling plants in the ground. Outdoors in the ground you really can’t beat having an actual taproot for anchoring the plant as well as finding deep moisture and nutrients. Clones always work much better in containers than the same seedling plants, as I have seen many-many times in the past myself.
- Dial in your watering skills, especially in containers; this is a keystone dynamic.
Final Thoughts with Rev
I have purposely kept this article basic and simple, because that’s really what it is. Pay close attention to every point I make regarding germinating and handle them all. A perfect germinating light is about a 250-watt HID metal halide or LED with a full (UV & Blue present) spectrum if you ask me. If you already rock at sprouting, then point a friend this way to this article if they are having issues germinating. Let’s make everyone a good germinator, shall we? Cheers my very green friends … Revski out 😊
I'm The Rev, and I have been with SKUNK for about a decade now. I hail from Southern California, spent mucho time in Northern California, and now reside in Southern Oregon; always coastal. I am an all natural style cannabis grower and I have written a couple books on the subject - check out True Living Organics 2nd Edition on Amazon - I have been growing for over 45 years, and I have been breeding cannabis for over 30 years. Check out kingdomorganicseeds.com to see some exotic selections. Growing connoisseur cannabis is what I teach mostly, growing it in living soil without using liquid organic nutrients to feed the plant. I am also a highly skilled synthetics grower, hydroponics, aeroponics, DWC/SWC/NFT, Ebb and Flow, and soilless, but I cringe when smoking synthetic grown herbs, so for the last 15 years or so I preach the artisan style of all natural growing, specializing in container growing. Cheers and welcome aboard.