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sprouting marijuana plant

One way to avoid sexing plants is to buy feminized seeds (more below), which ensures every seed you plant will be a bud-producing female.

A seed has germinated once the seed splits and a single sprout appears. The sprout is the taproot, which will become the main stem of the plant, and seeing it is a sign of successful germination.

What are feminized cannabis seeds?

Pre-flowers can initially be extremely small and hard to identify with the naked eye, but you can use a magnifying glass to get a better look.

Within a week or so you should see a seedling begin to grow from the soil.

Another drawback to clones is they can take on negative traits from the mother plant as well. If the mother has a disease, attracts pests, or grows weak branches, its clones will probably have the same issues.

Remember to be very gentle when handling your seedlings and transplanting them. Any minute damage to their roots can result in a ton of stress that, for such young and fragile plants, can take a while to recover from.

There’s no universal schedule on how to water your cannabis seedlings. Instead, you’ll need to pay close attention to your plants and their medium. We recommend sticking your finger roughly 2.5cm (1 inch) into the soil and watering only when the soil is completely dry. Also, remember to water your plants close to the stem where you know their roots are. Finally, remember that your pots need to have drainage holes in the bottom so excess water can drain out.

If you’re growing feminized seeds, transplanting isn’t as much of an issue since these plants have time to recover from the stress. Using Easy Start germination pots, you can support robust health right from the beginning. You’ll want to transplant your seedlings just before they start outgrowing their starter pots. We typically recommend transplanting once they’ve grown sets of true leaves that spread out to cover the full circumference of their current container.

KNOW WHEN AND HOW TO TRANSPLANT YOUR SEEDLINGS

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Your seeds are ready to plant once they’ve cracked open and released a small, white taproot. Plant your germinated seeds one knuckle (roughly 3–5 millimetres) deep with the taproot facing down. That way, your seedlings won’t have to reorient themselves.

Whenever you start feeding your plants, we recommend giving them half the recommended dose of fertiliser during the first week of feeding. This gives the plants time to adjust to their new diet.

When growing autoflowers, we recommend planting them directly in their final pots. Because of their short life cycle, it’s best to avoid putting autoflowering strains through any kind of unnecessary stress, including transplanting. While the exact pot size you use will vary depending on the strain you’re growing and the size of your grow space, most auto growers use pots between 5–15l.

This stage — moving from germinated cannabis seeds to cannabis plants with the maximum number of ridged edges per leaf — is the seedling stage.

But what does that TLC look like? What steps do you need to take to support your cannabis seedlings through the seedling stage and as they grow into mature marijuana plants?

Choose the right container

Like any plant, seedlings need light in order to grow and thrive. But not all light is created equal. If you want your seedling to grow into a healthy cannabis plant, you need to expose it to the right type of light.

The growing process has four key stages: the seed germination stage, the seedling stage, the vegetative stage, and the flowering stage. Once the cannabis seeds germinate and are placed into their growing medium (like a potting mix), they start to root into the soil as the stem grows upward, sprouting two cotyledon leaves, which help the plant absorb light and continue to grow.

If you’re growing your seedlings outdoors, they’ll need to be exposed to as much sunlight as possible. Photo by: Gina Coleman/Weedmaps