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The Best way to Germinate Autoflower Seeds

How an Autoflower Cannabis seed works.

The process of germinating Autoflower Cannabis Seeds can take up to 10 days. Here’s some information and a diagram on the makeup of a seed. The cannabis seed has a brown shell that is hard, and sometimes striped, this hard shell is what protects the inside of the seed which is extremely fragile.

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Structure of a Cannabis Seed

Should I Germinate Autoflowering Seeds Differently?

You germinate your autoflowering cannabis seeds in the same way as your feminized or regular seeds. At Dagga Seeds, all our autoflowering seeds are also feminized, which means you will get only female, bud-producing plants from our products. You don’t have to stress over identifying and removing male plants before they pollinate.

Autoflowering Marijuana Seed Germination: The Basics

Of course, you can feel free to germinate your autoflowering weed seeds using any method you want. We recommend you use our water glass and paper towel method. This tends to be the most reliable method of sprouting auto-flowering seeds, but it certainly isn’t the only method.

It may be tempting to pour out your new autoflowering marijuana seeds, discard the protective shipping container, and twiddle them for a touch, but we’d recommend resisting this urge. Ideally, you don’t touch your seeds with your bare hands. In fact, it’s best to never touch your weed plants with your unprotected hands. Hands carry germs just waiting to be transferred to and wreak havoc on your seed babies. We’d recommend always using protective gloves, or at the very least washing your hands before tending your seeds or plants.

Germinating Autoflowers in Soil – PLANTING DIRECTLY IN LARGE CONTAINER

Sometimes the simplest way is the better way. As it happens in nature, you can also sprout your seeds in the growing medium of your choice (soil, coco coir, perlite, etc..)

Just grab a small stick, make a small hole (1cm deep), and place your autoflower seed in the hole. The medium must be wet but not soaking, then cover with soil without applying pressure to the seed.

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Autoflower Germination guide: planting directly in the medium

Planting directly in the final container is the best way to avoid stressing your cannabis plants due to transplanting. Every time you transplant a seedling, it needs some time to readjust and can cause plant stress. Auto-flowering plants grow very fast and it is recommended not to transplant them. Plant the seed or germinated sprout directly in a large finishing container. One of the top benefits of using this method is you are less likely to damage your seedling when transplanting or shocking it because it already is in its final place.

Germinating Autoflower seeds – Paper Towel Method

When germinating, we need to tell the cannabis seed to wake up, water will soften the shell of the seed and stimulate the seed embryo. When the water reaches the embryo it will “activate” and start to develop and grow.

Step 1 to Germinating Autoflower Seeds

Fill a small glass container about halfway with fresh water. The water can be spring, rain, or distilled, but don’t use it straight out of the tap. Place the glass in a safe location and open your little container of seeds.
If you purchased a small seed pack, you can gently pour the complete contents of the protective shipping container into the glass of water. If you’ve bought several seed packs, we recommend dividing your seeds between a few glasses, with no more than a few seeds per cup.

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Step 2 to Germinating Autoflower Seeds

Once your seeds are in the water you are going to let them sit here for up to 24 hours. Over time, water should start to soak into the tiny pores of the seed shells and weigh them down. Eventually, the seeds sink to the bottom as we want.
If, after about 15 hours, all your seeds have not gone to the bottom, use a pair of tweezers or a spoon to gently tap the floating seeds. It’s possible they were just held up by water surface tension and will then sink. If they don’t, you can leave the seeds to continue to soak for another 12 hours.

If, after 24 hours of soaking, one or more seeds still will not sink, we recommend carrying on to the next step anyway. Those seeds may just have thicker shells, so they take a bit longer to open and sprout.

Step 3 to Germinating Autoflower Seeds

Take a clean glass or plastic plate and cover it with paper towels. Pour the glass with seeds and all – onto the paper towel. The towel will become soaked, and you can carefully drain off any excess water. Using your tweezers again, gently nudge your seeds so they are 1 inch apart. Also move them to one half of the plate, because you’re going to fold the towel over the top of the seeds.

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Germinating with a paper towel diagram


With the paper towel is completely covering the seeds, take your plate to a warm, dark spot. These two conditions, plus the water, are what your autoflowering marijuana seeds need to grow.
Twice a day, carefully check up on your autoflowering seeds, allowing in minimal light as you do. You’re waiting for a little white taproot to emerge from the shell and crawl out. You want the taproot to be about ½” long before you plant it in soil or medium. This could take anywhere up to six days, depending on the thickness of the seed shell, among other factors.


Each time you check your seeds, make sure the paper towel is still slightly wet, but not soaking. You don’t want the seeds floating in the water or they could start to mould. Also, the taproot won’t have to search at all for sustenance if it is still submerged in water. Mist the paper towel with freshwater only when it starts to dry out.

Good luck growing your autoflowering seeds, send us a message if you have any questions.

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