3 Simple Methods to Improving the Germination Rates of Your Seeds

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While it only takes a bit of warm, moist soil for most seeds to start growing, others have a much harder time with this. Whether it’s due to the seed’s hard coat or other environmental factors, this can be extremely frustrating for gardeners. Luckily, there are a few ways to speed up the germination rate of your seeds.

1. Scarification

Using a sheet of medium-grit sandpaper, begin scuffing your seeds one at a time. Make sure that you’re only sanding the side though because if not, you’ll be preventing growth. At the same time, you don’t want to make any deep scratches. That’s because this will end up baring the underlying, lighter-colored embryo. If you have a lot of seeds, you can hurry up this process by throwing them in a jar full of sand. Shake it forcefully until they’re dull and scratched. As soon as the seeds are scarified, sow them.

2. Stratification

For 24 hours, soak your seeds in water. When the seeds start floating to the top, skim them off. Typically these aren’t viable. Instead, drain the rest and place the larger ones onto a piece of damp, long-fibered sphagnum peat moss. The small seeds should be mixed with vermiculite that’s barely moistened. Take all the seeds and put them in a sealed bag. These should then be refrigerated at roughly 40 to 45 degrees for 1 to 4 months. After this, sow the seeds indoors under lights.

3. Soaking

As the name suggests, immerse the seeds in a jar that’s full of lukewarm water for anywhere from 4 to 24 hours. Next, pick out any seeds that rise to the top, since those are useless to you. Pour whatever seeds are left over into a wire mesh strainer and rinse them well with cool water. When you are done with that, sow the seeds immediately.


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