Making sure my hands are clean and sterile, I shake the excess moisture out of the rapid rooter, or give it a gentle squeeze. Basically, you want them to be “moist” but not soaked/saturated.
Here’s my process:
I place the seed about half way down into the rooter (again pointy end up) and then I tear a small piece of rooter plug to cover the hole on the rooter. It should not be “jammed” in there, but placed in somewhat loosely. The hole should be fully covered to not allow light in.
- Pre-soak seeds in glass for a few hours
- Pre-soak rooter plug 12-24 hours (probably doesn’t need to be that long)
- Use RO water from store – do not PH balance it
- Shake/squeeze out excess moisture in the rooter
- Use a tweezers or pen to loosen up the hole, and make it slightly deeper.
- Position seed in the rooter plug, pointy end up
- Cover the hole on the rapid rooter plug by tearing a small piece of the plug, and loosely covering the hole.
- Place rapid rooter, with seed in it, inside humidity dome, under flourescent lights (I use T5’s).
- Rooter plugs should be moistened with plain RO water periodically, but only moistened
- Heat mat is not needed – and it can dry the rooter plug too fast. Humidity only needs to be around 50%. I just mist the humidity dome periodically.
- No nutrients are needed with seedlings until the 3rd set of true leaves.
- I transplant when roots are showing through the bottom and sides of rooter plugs
I use a clean pen cap as a tool to scoop the seed from the cup of water, and place it into the rooter. I used to do the “paper towel” method of “pre-germinating” seeds, but it is better to plant them directly in the rapid rooter (or whatever medium you use). You will have better success, and quicker development if you skip the whole paper towel thing, in my experience. When putting it into the rooter plug, I put it in pointy end up (hinged end down). Positioning it this way will allow the taproot to make the turn it needs to, and will put the seed in a better position to succeed and remove it’s “helmet”.
I soak seeds for a few hours in a glass of RO water. The Rapid Rooter is soaked overnight in a glass of RO water.
My seed germination technique
I really like Rapid Rooter plugs. I’ve been germinating seeds in them since I started growing, and now use them for cloning, too. They’re great as they can be used to germinate for soil or hydro, and easy to use. They contain important micronutrients and beneficial organisms to stimulate rapid root development. They have a really nice balance between moisture retention and airiness.
I take a sterile tweezers, squeeze it together, and I stick it into the hole of the rapid rooter while I gently twist it around some. I’ve had better luck if I deepen the hole slightly, and loosen it up a little inside the rooter plug. You could also use a pen, etc. Basically, just loosen it up and make it about a 1/4″ deeper than they come from the factory.
My seed germination technique I really like Rapid Rooter plugs. I've been germinating seeds in them since I started growing, and now use them for cloning…
What makes these plugs truly effective is their design – each plug is filled with powerful, seed boosting micro-nutrients that plants need to germinate effectively.
After soaking, drain the excess and proceed to follow the instructions for cuttings and/or seeds for germination.
Ideally, plants should get natural sunlight because that’s the simplest way to encourage plants to grow. But if you don’t have a space for your grow tray near a window where plenty of sunlight is streaming in, the next best thing is using LED grow lights.
Set your LED grow light to the appropriate setting and pop the tray under – and wait for Rapid Rooter starter plugs to show signs of vigorous root structures.
Remember: in the soil where seeds sprout naturally, the soil only contains a specific amount of moisture, and when there’s too much water, the seeds simply do not germinate at all.
3. Some hydroponics growers just moisten their starter cubes or plugs with water – this is fine. However, if you have access to mycorrhizal fungi, beneficial bacteria and other boosters for your cuttings or seedlings, we highly recommend that you soak your plugs/cubes in these to give your new crops a leg up.
After the pre-soaking, the starter plugs will hold a sufficient amount of water for the rapid propagation of roots. Add water to the plugs only when there is evidence of complete drying out.
Seedlings, specifically, benefit from sufficient grow light exposure. You’re going to get short, stocky seedlings with vigorous roots – perfect for transplantation.
For optimum results, all the starter plugs that you wish to use at one time should be pre-soaked in water mixed with a light blooming formula.
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