White Widow seeds germinate but die

WW Seeds germinate, form root and cotyledons then die without breaking the ‘surface’ of soil loose enough for some light to hit part of a cot. The seed hulls almost need surgical removal on some just to get it this far or else they die on the wet paper towel in the petri dish. All start with 24 hours in double osmosis 6.9 ph water. I only have 5 seeds left.

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First off welcome to our world of growing here at ILGM and to our community of awesome fokes.

Ok… the roots when placed in soil dont need light. Cover them over good about an 1/2 inch down. Keep mosit not soaken wet … ok? and you should be ok

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I do that. only the a slight portion of the cotyledons are allowed a little light as the seeds do not appear to know which way is up or down. Like no gravity type behavior. But they do not even seem to reach for the light, just die.

@garrigan62 has you covered here but it sounds as though you may be waiting too long after they sprout the root before placing in soil. There really should not be anything green (cotyledons will not have revealed yet) when you put them into the soil, just a little white root and the body of the seed.

Plus, welcome to our wonderful community of growers.

It dosn’t matter which way the tap root is placed in the soil. It always grows down and that’s fact. Also they need no nutrients. They have their own untill they have 5 or 6 true sets of leaves.\What type of soil are you using ? Because it sounds like to me your soil may be to hot. Which means there is a high percentage of nutrients in it which causes them to burn up.

This is what I use with 100% growth

The N.P.K Is like N 0.015 P 0.015 K.015

Very, Very little nutrients Plus i’ll mix in some worm castings. They love that stuff

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Its hard to describe. What I was trying to say, was that the germinated embryo dies before it forms chlorophyll, let alone pushes through the surface. I had no chance.

Conundrum. Maybe the seeds were irradiated in flight during the mailing process? Just a complete WAG. I have had them for more than 12 months, but keep them in a refrigerator at about 48 degrees.

Love worm castings too. the leachate from the soil tests out at 6.4 - 6.6 and is a simple blend 1/3 commercial garden soil, 1/3 peat, 1/3 cow manure and mushroom compost mixed, adjusted ph, and somewhat sterilized with boiling water in the process. (cooled for weeks of course). I will check for other burning micronutrients tho. something is doing it.

Sorry about that, my lab top CHARSHED

I would check the back of that bag for the N.P.K and i’m not up on that cow manuer not sure how hot it is ( The ag is the ** Commercial Soil

There’s the problem.

Let me make a couple of suggestions to get you going:

First, take a seed and run it down the side of a matchbox striker to ‘score’ the surface. Then place in a custard cup of distilled water with 1/2 teaspoon of 3% peroxide. Place in a warm (75F or so) dark place (I use the top of my cable box) and allow to germinate. The seed should drop within 24 hours and watch for a crack/white to show.

Once you see taproot, place 1/2" deep in a pure seed starting material like straight coco. Read the bag before purchasing. You want 0 nutrients.

The seedling needs almost no water in the soil/media for the first couple of weeks until it develops a strong taproot, Until then the plant derives it’s moisture from the air. To facilitate this, place a clear dome over the plant and, using a spray atomizer, mist the inside of the dome twice per day.

Lighting: LED’s should be 24" from plant and set to run 24/0 until established. Ambient temps need to be mid 70’s.

If you feel you need to add water to your media; no more than a couple of teaspoons per day.

This will give you a high rate of success.

I would also suggest you not drop any more seeds in the manner you have tried already.


thanks! I’ll add striation of seeds to my process. What is the the 3% H2O2 for?

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It attacks the seed husk, softening it and introduces a sterile environment for the seedling and finally adds needed O to the water for the sprout. I have had old seeds take as much as 6 days to sprout and if you run into a slow to sprout seed just add peroxide every day (it dissipates away over time) until root shows.


Okay. First, let me say that ILGM has been my best most consistent source of information, and after reviewing many sources, my chosen source of seeds. I am new to growing weed, but a 40 year veteran of gardening, and grew weed in college using CO2, fans, heat removal, grow lights, reflective material, hydroponics, and pulling the males, etc. BUT, back then you could throw bag seeds on the ground and they’d grow.
I used Myfriendis410 method except: the medium was vermiculite, premoistened, in peat pots. The peat pots were in place in the center of their permanent home, with 1 inch of vermiculite as buffer around, just in case the soil was hot (to eliminate transplant shock). 2 Seeds germinated on paper towel, and dropped 1/2 inch deep holes and lightly covered. humidity domes = peanut butter jars inverted. No joy.

No comments needed. At this point I am changing one variable at a time. No more paper towel. Even tho the dirt was dry around the peat pots, and the nutrients could not have gone through that many barriers (?) w/o lots of water, using only vermiculite until there are 3 sets of leaves.

I will post results. Thanks.


Thanks for that post I have made a mental note of it all,
On second thoughts maybe I will write it down. :nerd_face: