Hydro Seed Germination with Rapid Rooters - Thoughts?

I am late into my first ever grow, and am, of course, planning the next grow.

For the sake of clarity here is my set up today:

Grow Room: 4x4x80 tent
Light: King Plus 1500w LED (I am going to get a second one of these soon so I will have two)
Medium: 3.5 gallon DWC pots with clay pebbles (6 spots, but for this next grow I am only going to use 4)

Here is my thought for germinating my seeds and producing seedlings suitable for placing in my bubble pots:

I have a 10 site cloning system (basically a small tote with ten holes, air stone, small pump). What I want to do (assuming someone here will validate this will work) is germinate the seeds as you would in soil, but instead in rapid rooters. So using a seed germination tray, pop seeds into rapid rooters that have been soaked in PHd water. Once the seeds have sprouted and seedlings have appeared, then I thought I could move the seedlings into the cloner. This way I can provide them oxygenated, PHd and PPMd water until they have roots dangling from the rapid rooters and can be moved into my bubble pots.

Thoughts? Is the intermediate step of putting them in a smaller hydro system (the cloner) reasonable or unnecessary? Seems like a lot of people who germinate with hydro have an issue going from seedling to vegetating plant due to water not getting to the roots early in the plants life. I suppose the other option would be to go directly to the bubble pots but put the water levels up to the bottom of the rapid rooters? I like the idea of using the cloner because it will be a lot less work to manage the water in a single small reservoir for 4 seedlings than it would be in 4 3.5 gallon reservoirs. :slight_smile:

One last question: If I want to germinate and mature those seedlings in my grow tent, what is the best configuration for my light? 18/6 schedule? My first grow, I started my seeds in soil and transplanted them to larger pots (6" pots) until they had 5-6 nodes, then moved them into the hydro system (washing the roots was a PITA). While my plants all made it, I’d certainly like to avoid all that work AND the stress on the plants. Anyway, during the seedling phase I just put them in a window sill. Now that the winter months are coming I’m not going to be able to do that.

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May work, may not , i am just not a fan to give nutrients to seedling… Never heard this technic before…

That’s a question for @latewood @Aquaponic_Dumme @Donaldj or other hydro growers…

Just give them time to respond :wink::relaxed:

~Al :v: :innocent:

I start my ladies in hydro 3 ways seeds in Rapid rooters, cuttings in rapid rooters or, bubble cloner in most cases I raise a mother in soil take cuttings then use them but yes you can use Rapid rooters in hydro unit and they can be used to start seeds. The basic rules to seedlings still apply being nutrients should be kept quite low and nothing until roots and plant is well established. Rapid rooters are coco and basically inert but do have root enhancing charge, they can get saturated (over watered) so I don’t place in active unit until roots are well established I start them in tray with layer of lecca under them and let them grow into it before placing in net cup with layer of lecca surrounding rooter to prevent it getting too saturated. The net cup is place in unit with nutrient solution 1"-1"1/2 inches under net cup bottom so bubbles just mist lecca I top water every few days until roots are coming out bottom of net cup then stop top watering this encourages rooting.
Using rooters you can actually start right in unit easily enough by using domes for each plant and letting seeds sprout just like in tray. As I said I tend to keep mother plants so most seeds I start go into soil :wink:


Thanks for the fast response @Donaldj

~Al :v: :innocent: canada

What is lecca? All I can find on Google is some musician. :smiley:

It’s clay pebbles, @Bogleg

~Al :v: :innocent:


Hydroton hydrocorn but yes Clay pellets

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Ahh! Good to know. :slight_smile: FWIW, I just started smoking (and growing) weed when it was legalized in my state last November. Interestingly enough, since I started smoking I have almost completely quit drinking and lost 38 pounds since the election. :o

So yeah, I don’t know very much about this stuff.


That would be my misunderstanding few jump straight into growing hydro without extensive homework on systems it can be far less forgiving than soil/coco or soil less :wink: If this is your first try plan a back up keep a mother plant in soil be on top of your home work

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Yeah, my question about starting seeds in hydro was for my next grow - I am almost done with my first one (also in hydro). This first grow, I germinated my seeds in soil and transplanted them to my DWC system once they were 10-12" high. I most definitely do NOT want to wash roots again, which is why I was asking. I do use clay pellets as my hydro medium.

I started my dwc in rapid rooter in homemade minidome until roots showed then put in dwc bucket she’s doing great at 3 weeks


Hmm. I have some domes that will fit over my buckets - I would probably have to tape them down to get them to stay put. So what was your process? Soak the rapid rooter, drop the seed in, put it under the dome and let it do its thing?

@Bogleg have journal 1st dwc grow.i germinated in paper towel.as soon as tap root showed i placed in moist rapid rooter i placed two toothpicks 90 degrees from one another towards bottom of rooter in bottom of empty water bottle i used Crystall springs. Misted inside top oprtion of bottle(dome) and left under cfl till sprouted when roots emerged from rooter immediately placed rooter in dwc bucket with clay pebbles

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My grow journal for dwc is 1st time D W C with w.w.auto

I myself go ahead and put the rapid rooters into the medium attach my drip line fill up my bucket 3 in from the bottom of the net pot and they normally Sprout within 2 days and then I don’t have to worry about the transplant

How many roots have to reach water before I can turn off drip?

It doesn’t take too many once a few roots have made it to where they are sprinkled by air bubbles from res you are good to go

I normally just run mine until I see a couple of little Feeder routes and a good Taproot Dropped In I have come to find that you end up with a lot of fungus problems if you leave it running the full time I’ve tried everything from black vinyl lines and making sure no son is in the bucket over a period of time it just builds up

Here’s some photos


What node would you suggest to top my plant to? It’s a white widow.