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If you have been unlucky and some, or all of your cannabis seeds haven’t germinated, there is usually an easily identifiable reason. Germination isn’t really just about your seed cracking and a tap root appearing, it is about the transition of a seed into a very small, but viable cannabis plant. So, let’s start at the beginning. How long did you soak your seeds in water for? Did they all sink to the bottom of the glass before you transferred them to the moist paper towel? Seeds that were still floating are unlikely to have absorbed sufficient water to successfully germinate. If you leave the seeds in water for too long, the tap root will not form and the germination process will grind to a halt. Once you transferred your seeds to the damp paper towel, over the next few days did you ever let any parts, or all of the towel dry out?

At the earliest stages of germination, the smallest of errors can have major consequences. Similarly, the paper towel mustn’t be steeped in water – the tap root grows naturally as it searches for water – if it is too easy to find, it just won’t grow. If your water has loads of additives, such as copper and chlorine, this can poison your plants, while handling the seeds with dirty hands can also poison them. Make sure you either wash your hands with a non-toxic soap, wear latex gloves, or use tweezers. The next thing to check is the temperature of the seeds. The optimum temperature to keep them at for good germination is between 70 and 90 degrees Fahrenheit or 21 to 21 degrees Celsius.

If the seeds are too cold, they just won’t germinate, even if everything else is perfect. The roots of plants don’t like light and the same applies to the tap root and subsequent roots that will develop when your seeds germinate. Almost total darkness is ideal for germinating seeds, even though it is hopeless for growing seedlings! It is interesting to note that it is certain wavelengths in light that affect germination and it is the blue wavelength that tends to corrupt germination, while the red wavelength promotes germination.

You also have to take into account when bought your seeds? While cannabis seeds can remain viable for a large number of years if stored in perfect conditions, they can be ruined inside a couple of weeks if not stored correctly. Finally, and unfortunately, it’s a fact of mother nature that not all seeds will germinate. Some will be duds and this is out of our control. So, did we miss anything out? we’d love to hear your thoughts in the comment section below.

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