How to tell if a seed is dead? Here are some tricks

How to recognize a seed if it is alive or dead?

Sometimes hemp seeds do not germinate because they are lifeless. Here’s how to spot a dead hemp seed and avoid wasting time

In previous articles, we have repeatedly stressed how the quality of cannabis seeds can make all the difference in achieving a healthy and productive plantation.

Poor quality seeds can lead to weak and unprofitable plants or even to no germination at all.

This article will learn how to recognise quality hemp seeds (such as BSF seeds) and tell if a seed is dead and therefore totally useless.

Advice on how to tell if a seed is dead

Dead or bad hemp seed: here’s why quality is essential

In the field of hemp growing, some choose to buy ready-made seedlings, and those prefer to plant the marijuana seeds themselves so that they can monitor the growth of the plantation from the very beginning.

Of course, in order not to waste time, it is essential to make sure that you are dealing with quality seeds of the right genetics (such as auto-flowering seeds, feminised seeds, etc., which you can find for sale at Sensoryseeds), but above all, they must be alive!

Yes, you got that right!

If the seeds are too old or have been stored incorrectly, they may have lost their ability to germinate, and so, even if you put your mind to it, the seedlings won’t grow.

In the next section, we will clarify the main signs that the seeds you have in your hands may be lifeless.

Read also: How to choose the type and shape of the pot to plant cannabis seeds

Dead seeds: How to recognise them?

Many novice cannabis growers are tempted to buy low-quality marijuana seeds because they are sold cheaply.

Up to this point, it all seems quite normal. However, in such cases, the problem is that the seedlings often do not grow, and it isn’t easy to understand the cause.

Many people wonder what they might have done wrong and try to figure out what to do if the seeds do not germinate.

Of course, sometimes you make mistakes, but you have to check whether the seeds you have bought are still alive in other cases.

Knowing how to distinguish high-quality seeds from bad ones is very important to avoid wasting time and money.

Let’s start with the appearance.

Good quality seeds usually have a kind of waxy layer that shines when exposed to light. As a result, their colour can vary from brown to grey or black, with some speckling.

If you are dealing with white or light green cannabis seeds, they are immature and unable to germinate.

Seeds that appear ‘dried out’, have cracks or dents are of poor quality.

You can also tell by touch whether the seeds are good or not.

If you hold a hemp seed between your index finger and thumb and apply pressure, some seeds crumble, while others do not at all. The quality ones and the ones most likely to be alive are, of course, the latter.

A test is considered almost foolproof to see if hemp seeds can germinate: water immersion.

If by putting them in a glass with warm water they float, then it means they are dead or rotten; whereas if they go down, they are of good quality.

Of course, all these tricks apply to seeds of all genetics and types.

If we have intrigued you, you too can try floating feminised seeds, fast seeds or auto-flowering seeds from your collection (but remember that growing cannabis is not allowed in the UK).

Concerning the flotation test, however, we would also like to point out that it should only be carried out during the hours before sowing and that the seeds must be removed from the water within 24 hours. Otherwise, they will be irreparably damaged.

How to tell if a seed is dead

Live seeds which do not germinate: what is the cause?

If also thanks to the advice given above, we know that our seeds are alive but still do not germinate, there is probably another cause.

Let’s see what the main ones might be.

  • Soil which is too cold
  • Sometimes it is the temperature of the soil that is too cold that prevents marijuana seeds from germinating. If you keep the soil warm enough, you will see faster germination.
  • Incorrect choice of substrate
  • It is usually recommended to use a relatively friable and light substrate when sowing cannabis. If the seedlings do not germinate, the root growth may be prevented by too loamy and difficult to penetrate.
  • Sowing too deep
  • Cannabis seeds, being relatively small, should be planted close to the surface of the soil. Otherwise, the sprouts will not be able to emerge.
  • Insufficient irrigation
  • Sometimes cannabis seeds fail to germinate because they are not watered enough.
  • It is essential to keep the soil well moist, as this is the only way for the seeds to swell and germinate.

Read also: Water and cannabis in bloom: here’s how much water the plant needs at this stage

To conclude

As we have seen, you can use a few tricks to find out if your cannabis seeds are dead or not.

Unfortunately, even if the seeds appear to be alive and of good quality, they may have genetic defects. That is why the best choice is always to buy quality fast flowering seeds (such as BSF seeds) at the outset.

After this in-depth analysis and always remembering that cultivating and consuming cannabis is forbidden in the UK, we invite you to consult the seed proposals in our SensorySeeds.com store.

Choose the products you prefer to complete your collection, take advantage of our advantageous prices and fast delivery.

We look forward to seeing you in our SensorySeed online shop. See you soon!