Is germination before planting really necessary?

Discussion in 'First Time Marijuana Growers' started by leao, Jan 19, 2009.

  1. I guess the title really sums it up. I'm just curious if it's actually necessary to germinate the seeds before putting them into potting soil, or should I just pre-water the soil in a small container, plant the seed right in, and of course transplant 'em later?
    So what are the pros and cons of germinating the seed before placing in soil?

    Thanks in advance for any help!
  2. If you are intending to grow in soil, I have never found any advantage whatever in germinating seeds in paper towels, it just adds a totally unnecessary extra step. I can in fact list several disadvantages.
    I start my seeds off about 4 mm deep in my compost mix, keep them warm and moist, they pop the surface in 1 to 5 days.
    If you were growing tomatoes or cacti you would read the instructions on the packet and put them straight in soil - why treat MJ differently?? ​
  3. Thanks for the rapid reply, and I've had my suspicions about "pre-germinating" being unnecessary. Do you recommend keeping the small starting container covered in plastic to retain moisture before they sprout, or is that also an extraneous extra step?

    Thanks again for the help
  4. I wouldn't bother with it.
  5. yeah like the others said.. just put the seeds in the dirt and your good to go. No need trying to mess with a seedlings taproot if you don't need to.
  6. Thanks again for the help gentlemen. Any advice that can make those critical first stages of development easier always helps.
  7. yeah dont bother with the paper towel.

    I do soak them in room temp water for 12 hours, stir with finger to see if they sink. if not anoter 12 hrs and then place in soil
  8. I think there's some things being missed in this discussion:

    The benefit of knowing:
    A) If the seed popped (rather than watering soil with nothing in it) - and saves waiting time
    B) What SIDE the taproot is extending from. Without knowing this, you have a 50/50 chance of planting the seed upsidedown, in which case it will take extra time for it to wrap around and right itself.

    Much easier to just plop em in PT and as soon as they pop insert into medium/soil taproot down. Never found a single drawback to it - only benefits.

  9. Good points, but since this is my first time, I can't really confirm or deny any of these. Have to leave that to the experts.
    I guess the thing I'm most worried about is damaging the popped seed in transit to the initial planting.
  10. I have only witnessed this once - and it was because the guy let the seed go way beyond popping and actually had a root base.... this and he dropped the damn thing on the floor while moving it.

    If you treat it like a contact lens, you're FINE. Just pull it as soon as it pops.

    But the more I think about it - if you're truly that concerned about damaging the seed then perhaps you know more than I about your which case, go with what you can physically handle.
  11. #11 cantharis, Jan 19, 2009
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 19, 2009

    You are saying the guy left a seed in a paper towel for too long? I totally agree - any time in a paper towel is too long.

    When I was a noob, I germinated seeds in a paper towel - had read you should do this. ok, the seed sprouted, and as I removed the seed from the towel I could FEEL the delicate hairs that had grown into the towel being ripped off. I thought, this has GOT to be a stupid method, only done by stupid people.
    Since then I have planted my seeds in the soil, as God and nature intended. There is NO advantage to be gained by putting your seed in a paper towel, it is a totally unnecessary extra step.
  12. #12 newgrowNY, Jan 19, 2009
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 19, 2009

    99.9% of the time that a seed sinks it will sprout within 3 to 4 days days, if under 1/2 of soil

    it doesnt matter which way the tap root is placed, it will find its way down.... I dont think 1000 years ago people were using paper towels to start their seeds... they fall off the plant and some how they grew...

    in some ways planting with tap root up is good because when the root twists down it helps the seedling pop the seed case
  13. NO benefit to germ'n in a PT? Please expand on that.... here is what I get:

    1: I know where the taproot is coming from. My seeds are NEVER planted upside down.
    2: I know when the seed popped
    3: I know how long it took for said seeds to pop (always write that on the baggy so I know which are quick, which take longer)

    Benefits to planting directly in soil:
    1: You never have to touch the seed/taproot, unless pulling out a dead one.

    Truth is, I'm always open to learning new methods and improving on my own. But here, the pro's and con's logic just doesnt work out in your favor.... ?
  14. #14 cantharis, Jan 19, 2009
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 19, 2009

    I am not sure why people insist on trying to germinate in paper towels - they think they have to. And are surprised to learn that MJ seeds have been germinating in the ground as God and nature intended for millions of years before paper towels were invented.

    As I said earlier, there are a number of DISadvantages to germing your seeds in paper towels

    1. It is a totally timewasting unnecessary extra step.
    2. Fine hairs growing into the towel get ripped off.
    3. Noobs seem to be confused as to which way is up with the taproot. Plant the seeds in soil and the taproot will ALWAYS go down.
    4. Seeds can be easily kept too damp in a paper towel, causing rot.
    5. Seeds can be kept too dry in a paper towel, if the seed has sprouted then allowed to dry - it is dead.
    6. MJ seeds are expensive - do not waste your money by damaging your delicate sprouts by over handling. Leave them be to do as nature intended.

    Advantages to using paper towel? NONE.
  15. I never put seeds in paper towels, my first grow dvd syas to just put them in water until they crack. Thats what I do, as soon as the seed cracks I put it into soil, just so I know that the seed is good. I hate the idea of seeds in paper towels but each to their own.
  16. hahah... right on brother. I can see you certainly have strong emotional ties to your method of germin' as well as anti-paper towel'ism. It's cool.

    Only piece I'd add is your choice of labeling the PT method as a n00b choice. From all of your anti's it seems that n00bs are the only ones who will actually fuck the PT method perhaps soil is the safe/n00b choice and PT is risky business!

    Either way, it's all good. My plants grow just fine as I'm sure yours do.... funny debate though - loved your #1 con...
  17. #17 GrtPlnsGrower, Jan 19, 2009
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 19, 2009
    Cantharis makes some good points. However I myself always germ mine in paper towels. I havent noticed any adverse effects by doing so. I even broke a tap root last year when removeing from the towel. The seed came up and grew along with its sisters with no noticeable difference. Is it necessary ? No. Will it do damage to your seed ? No. Matter of preference really. Also Im not a noob....unless 28 years of messing with the ganja makes one so ?
  18. [quote name='GrtPlnsGrower']Cantharis makes some good points. However I myself always germ mine in paper towels..... I havent noticed any adverse effects by doing so.... I even broke a tap root last year when removeing from the towel. quote]

    So breaking taproots is fine and you would have done this going straight to soil?

  19. :eek: no breaking tap roots isnt the ultimate goal, lol. My point was that it is pretty hard to fuck up a seed or root. Even with it being broke ( the root ) it grew as good as the others. Germ them in soil, paper towel, water...what ever you prefere.
  20. +rep cantharis. After reading your posts I'll never use PT again. I broke the taproot on a Northern Lights seed I germed that way. It was barely showing but the tiny hairs were stuck in the PT.


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