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How to Germinate Cannabis Seeds – The Cling Film Method

There are many different ways to germinate seeds from across thousands of plant types but most of these will be unsuitable for cannabis.


One of the most common ways to germinate cannabis seeds, using wet tissue paper in a glass/plate is only really suitable if your cannabis seeds are old or of an unknown viability. Germination rates can then be assessed and only living sprouts can be potted up.

This method is unsuitable for fresh, highly viable seeds as sproutlings will inevitably get damaged upon handling and transfer. One of the most reliable methods to germinate viable, fresh seeds is to use cling film to cover the top of each pot to stop the medium/soil from drying.


Drop your selected seeds into a glass of water for 10-20 minutes but do not leave them soaking for longer, otherwise occasionally you will drown a seed.

When choosing your pots, remember that you will get a better ratio of females to males (if using regular seeds) and healthier plants if the young tap root is allowed to grow straight down. A good rule of thumb is an ‘index finger to the knuckle’ depth of medium/soil. Try to standardize all of your pots and you will soon get accustomed to how much medium and water is needed.

The best medium to use when germinating your seeds is soil. This should be of the very highest quality that you can find, extremely fine grade and with no hard grainy additives such as perlite or sharp sand.

Germinating straight into a hydroponic medium such as rockwool should be avoided for the inexperienced. Seeds can be germinated and grown in soil for a time before cuttings are taken. Cuttings can then be very effectively rooted and hydroponically grown.

Remember if taking cuttings to sex your young plants first to remove undesirable males. This is the method that most hydro growers will use; keeping ‘mother’ plants with desirable traits.

Prepare your pots with soil and water, leaving a small space at the top for your sproutling to grow into. Then using your little finger, make a nails-depth hole in the center of each pot and plant one seed into each hole, covering with soil. You will not need to water again until after the seed has sprouted.

Cover only the top of each pot with cling film, knotting the film to make a small greenhouse for your seed. Place pots in a well lit environment at room temperature. Cold or heat at this stage will stunt or kill the seedlings.

Checking twice per day, the sprouts should take no more than fourteen days to be above ground. Fresh, quality seeds can be above ground in less than a week.

Remove the film as soon as the sprout pokes through the surface of your soil and place under a low intensity light source to become stronger and more vigorous.

Check every so often and re-pot when roots have reached the bottom and sides.

Want to give this a try? Head to Seedsman now to find the perfect seeds for your next grow!

Cultivation information, and media is given for those of our clients who live in countries where cannabis cultivation is decriminalised or legal, or to those that operate within a licensed model. We encourage all readers to be aware of their local laws and to ensure they do not break them.


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