1. First, find a peat moss based germination mix. It can also contain some coir, but do not use a mix that is all coir. The best mix I have tested is “Jiffy Mix Natural and Organic Seed Starting Mix”. It is available on Amazon and at Home Depot. A mix that you already possess might also work well. If you wish to use it, I suggest you test it with a portion of your seeds, using the method described below.
2. Moisten your mix with tap water or reverse osmosis (RO) water. If it gets too wet add more dry mix. Then put the moist mix in a deli container or small pot so that the mix is around 1 inch deep. Keep the mix covered and moist until you sow the seeds.
3. At a table, place a sheet of computer paper in front of you to catch stray seeds. On top of it put an index card or paper of around that size. Open the glassine envelope and slide/tap the seeds onto the smaller paper. It might be necessary to pull the glassine apart to get all the seeds out. Then move that smaller paper over the sowing surface while tapping it to make the seeds fall evenly over the surface. Enclose the sowing container in a transparent sandwich bag or similar and fold its flaps under the container.
4. Place your sowed seeds container under “good” light, with the sowing surface at around 9-12 inches below the light. Fluorescent or white LED lights work well. Use a 12 ON, 12 OFF light cycle. Weak window light will produce leggy seedlings that are difficult to work with. Under the conditions described above, moisture will condense on the inside of the bag within a day or two. If it does not, it means your mix was not sufficiently moist at the start. To fix this, temporarily remove the bag and gently mist the surface with tap water or RO water. The seeded pot should stay enclosed in its plastic bag until the seedlings are large enough to transplant as described below.
5. At 14 days after sowing, plus or minus a few days depending on light and temperature, you will see tiny AV sprouts pop up on the mix surface. After another few weeks, or longer than that with suboptimal conditions, the seedlings will be around 1/4 to 1/2 inch tall. At that stage, you could transplant them to small pots or similar, or you could wait and let them grow larger, even an inch tall. Label the transplant pots with seed identity, transplant date, and serial numbers. Serial numbers are needed because each seedling will have a unique genome and will be different from every other seedling.
6. It is good to put the transplanted seedlings in a tray covered with a transparent dome for around ten days. Water with a weak fertilizer solution and care for the seedlings as you would care for young plants propagated from leaves. Whether you are propagating from seeds or from leaves, the time to bloom is 5-7 months. Happy growing!
Easy to grow Feb 2022 Revision-A © May be reproduced with full attribution.
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