There are three basic stages to growing plants successfully after germination, they are – root growth, vegetation and then flowering. It should also be remembered that plants grow just as cars drive and we breathe, it’s just what they do so as long as you give them the right basic conditions and a little attention once a day anyone is capable of caring for plants indoors or outdoors.
This article covers planting and root growth from seeds in living soil, using Hydroponics or Coco is also a good way to start but which will be covered more specifically in different articles.
Germination of Seeds
The best and most easy way to germinate seeds is to place them in a piece of wet kitchen towel and fold it over the seeds, then place the wet towel into a Ziploc sandwich bag, seal it and put the package into a dark but warm place for a few days. Check on it daily and pretty soon you will start to see the seeds first root emerging, now is the time to gently remove the seed and place it in it’s first pot of soil under a grow light or if you to give them a great start use a blue spectrum grow light (great for root development). If you are only growing a few plants just put the freshly sprouted seed straight into loosely packed, not too wet (it should crumble easily in your hand) soil in a pot at about twice it’s own depth and then cover loosely. You may as well use a large enough pot for the plant’s entire grow, it make no difference in terms of plant growth at this point but if you use smaller pots you will have to re-pot later.
Plants understand what time of year it is (and therefore whether to keep growing leaves or to grow flowers and reproduce) by the amount of hours of light they receive as opposed to dark. If they are receiving 18 hours of light and 6 hours of dark (vegetation stage) before the light starts again they will only ever grow branches and leaves. When the light cycle is 12 hours lights and 12 hours dark (flowering stage) they will cease the production of branches and leaves in favor of the production of flowers (in this case, the bits we want).
So once you have potted your germinated seeds ensure that they are getting 18 hours of light. this is easily achieved by using a timer.
Just as with human beings, dogs or anything imbued with the breath of life if you give it a good start it usually does quite well in later life. The same applies to plants, if plants begin life with a strong root system they will produce more and stronger leaves later. The seed will get along perfectly fine if you put it in it’s pot under a decent light, water it and nothing else, it doesn’t need any extra nutrients or products if you are using living soil as living soil contains everything it will need from seed to harvest and provides them in a slow release manner.
You don’t exactly need to do anything at this point other than keep an eye on the humidity and packing density of the soil. You need the soil to be moist but not wet and you need its packing density to be loose as newly forming roots do not have a lot of strength to push through compacted soil.
The roots will grow down into the soil and the first Cotyledon leaves will sprout from the seed. These leaves will eventually give way to proper leaves which will look like little actual Cannabis leaves. Well done, you nurtured your lil plant friend past germination and it is now in it’s new home ready to grow.
Please see next post in this series: Vegetation – Growing Lots of Leaves