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Old 09-28-2017, 05:10 PM #1
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Paper Towel method

After having my last 36 seeds fail to germinate I'm very wary of not fucking up again this time. I want to make sure I do everything right down to the last detail. So I have a few questions about the famous paper towel method of germing.

1. How many times do you fold the paper towel or do you simply lay the seeds on 1 ply of it? Basically does the seed need to be cushioned with a thick layer of them or is it fine to just 'sandwich them between too loose layers of moist towel?

2. How much water do you add to the towel? And do you squeeze off any excess? If so, do you squeeze it out with the seeds inside to 'mould' them to the towel and make them snug?

I know it might seem like I'm being pedantic here but I just want to make sure I can't blame my technique again this time. And I really don't want to waste any more money on seeds!

Any help would be greatly appreciated as my next round of seeds should get here tomorrow
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Old 09-28-2017, 05:40 PM #2
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I used to wet the paper, squeeze it out and flatten it. Just wants to be nice and damp, not too wet. Then place the seeds on, fold over the paper ( just lightly, no need for pressure), put the whole thing on a plate. Then cover the plate with either a plastic bag, or cling film to stop it drying out. Put this somewhere nice and warm for a couple of days.. works every time.

These days I always sow direct into the medium, saves disturbing any little root hairs.

Good luck, and all the best
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Old 09-28-2017, 05:44 PM #3
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I use brown paper towel (unbleached)
I leave the beans about an inch or so apart... to leave room so the taproots don't twist together....
fold over the paper towel over the beans, and slide into a sandwich baggy carefully to not disturb the placement of beans, add a few drops of water to the paper towel so it is uniformly wet but not soaked...
seal up the baggy and put it in a warm dark spot.. like on top of the fridge towards the back with a plate set over it upside down...
I'd use a separate bag for each strain you intend to sow and label accordingly...

now wait a day or 2 and check... and every day after that til they all successfully crack
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Old 09-28-2017, 05:51 PM #4
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Brown paper towel and little H2O2 in the water works well for me. Then transplant before root gets much bigger than 1/4", no small roots to damage yet.
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Old 09-28-2017, 11:40 PM #5
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Cheers guys. Can't find brown ones so white will have to do.

Also, I don't have a router or anything that stays constantly warm to put the seeds on. I'll be leaving them in the spare room upstairs with the radiator on.

What sort of temperature should the room be for optimal speedy germination? I was thinking 28-30C max.
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Old 09-29-2017, 01:25 AM #6
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About 78-82 degrees Fahrenheit is ideal in my opinion, 26-28 Celsius. Any higher and the bad things grow faster as well as the seed.
On top of the refrigerator works well.
The hydrogen peroxide helps a lot but a daily check allows you to remove any bad seeds before adjacent seeds are contaminated. Sometimes it is better to just relocate good seed to a fresh paper towel.
Good luck.
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Old 09-29-2017, 01:37 AM #7
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I always use paperwork towels and they've always worked really well. I use white paper towels several layers thick and leave it pretty damp but not dripping wet. Then place that in a old grocery bag and twist up the end to keep in the moisture. If it's cold sometimes I'll use a heating pad on low.
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Old 09-29-2017, 02:34 AM #8
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Rinse the seeds in 50/50 water and 3% hydrogen peroxide, then rinse with plain water.

Plant them 1" deep in the same type of media you're going to be growing in, individual pots/cups are recommended. Water thoroughly and keep moist until the seeds sprout, keep misted with water if the seed hulls don't come off right away. If the hull is moist, eventually the seedling will shrug it off. Once a seed sprouts to a seedling, cease all watering until the media reaches a barely moist state. Not dry.

Done.

As far as I'm concerned, the paper towel method is for determining the strike rate for a batch of seeds. 100 seeds in a moist paper towel. 89 sprout, it's an 89% strike rate. Just because someone once said "Hey, are you going to throw those away now? I can grow them!", doesn't mean it's a healthy way to sprout seeds.

Ask a horticulturist about moist paper towels for sprouting, then pulling seed and first root (with tiny hairs embedded in the towel) off to plant into some kind of media or other. They'll most likely laugh.

Either way, good luck. Practicing with bag seed can save you a lot of cash, should you happen to have any around for it. SaveSave
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Old 09-29-2017, 02:41 AM #9
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I would laugh at any idiot that leaves the seed in the paper towel long enough to get tiny hairs embedded..... then think thats the correct method....

I mean.....like duh......
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Old 09-29-2017, 03:01 AM #10
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Let me point out why I always use the wet paper towel method....

FIrst off it vastly easier to get the environment right for a small container than it is for many containers.....

The fact is.... germination temps are often different than the temps you veg at....

Its really not as hard as some would make it....

I find it really odd that people try to look down on the method when its just as effective as any other method....

Some folks love the method others dont....but I have yet to see the germination police come and force anyone to use it.....
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