How to Provide Expert Care for Marijuana Seedlings

How to provide expert care for Marijuana seedlings and learn about their lifespan how to grow marijuana seedlings.


 Marijuana seedlings-Marijuana Seed Connect 1


What you will discover here is how to care for seeds strains to produce marijuana seedlings, identify problems that may arise in your marijuana seedlings, and how to fix them to grow strong plants outdoors in a few short months, with big valuable flowers.

Welcome to the next stage of life for your marijuana plant, the seedling stage, where many exciting things begin to happen to this delicate life that in a few short months will deliver many benefits, when it is nurtured with care.

Marijuana seedlings can be very vulnerable to death or diseases due to their inability to regulate temperature and humidity, which is why growers provide greenhouses for the plants or use hydroponics systems.

Marijuana plant life obviously has a span that is a lot longer than that of  marijuana seedlings. As the marijuana seedling grows into the vegetative state, it grows many leaves that can regulate its temperature and humidity, necessary for its survival and providing the ability to engage in photosynthesis.

Factors that lead to healthy growth of Marijuana seedlings

Marijuana seedlings should be grown in a well-ventilated and cool environment. Temperatures that are too high will cause the plant to grow slowly and become stressed, eventually resulting in death.

If the seedlings are grown in an environment that is too cold, they will not be able to survive either. As the weather gets warmer, yet still it is not ready to put your marijuana seedling into the ground, its a good idea to harden the plant, which we will talk about later.

The main thing to remember is that marijuana seedlings require a high level of humidity, a clean environment, sunlight, filtered water, proper balance of elements in the soil, good air circulation and of course love and attention.

What else do I need, to go from marijuana seedling to growing a marijuana plant?

Plant containers, starter fertilizer, a potting soil mix, I also add a cup of diatomaceous earth. Diatomaceous earth causes insects and fungus to dry out. The powder has sharp edges that are abrasive, which speeds up the process. The material remains effective as long as it is kept dry and undisturbed, so I also apply it frequently to the top of the soil and sometimes even dust the leaves if infestation appears. Just a word of caution… wear a mask when applying the fine powder, as those shape pieces of dust can be inhaled and cause damage to your lungs.

Fill the container with soil mixture, making sure it is deep enough for the plant to grow in, about two inches from the top. Use a water filter to sift out the chlorine and harsh water sediments. When you add water only add enough water until the soil is moist but not soggy, that will clump when squeezed. Be sure to test how much water is enough with a water meter.

Nutrients are helpful too. These are applied in stages as we will discuss. There are different variations for each phase, for veg and early growth , there are some for early bloom and late bloom stages, as well. This may require more research and some trial and error.

You also need to schedule time to give your marijuana seedling full attention as it grows into an adult. You really do need to look at your plants often to check for infestation or fungus, etc., so you can stop it before it weakens or kills your plant.

Factors that lead to stunted growth of marijuana seedlings

Here are a few factors that can lead to stunted growth of marijuana seedlings… incorrect temperature, too much fertilizer or nutrients and/or too much or not enough water, or not enough light.

It is very important for the temperature to be in the range of 68 – 77 degrees F. If the temperature is too high, this can lead to stunted growth and a lack of chlorophyll production from weak photosynthesis, if it’s too low it will slow down the metabolism and the nutrients will not flow.

The problem lies in many outdoor growing situations, where a late freeze or heavy cold rains appear in spring time and if you put your plants in the ground too early, you face the risk of injuring them or of them dying.

If possible, it’s a good idea to provide protection over your marijuana seedlings, when they first go into the ground. Construct a mini hoop house with PVC and a grow cloth covering that will let sun in and hold the warmth and moisture in at night when temperatures drop and winds can increase.

Problems with watering and container size

Marijuana plants are most affordable when grown outdoors in temperate climates, but they can also be grown indoors, year round, as well, it’s just more costly. While hydroponic growers will disagree, many soil growers believe marijuana seedlings and plants grow best on rich soil with good drainage and adequate water, sunlight or artificial light, and nutrients.

So for soil marijuana growers, the size of the container for a marijuana plant will depend on the size you want the plant to grow. The type of soil used; marijuana plants prefer soil that is loamy, loose, and slightly acidic in pH 6.5-6.9. The pot should have a drainage hole to prevent water from collecting in the bottom of the pot or it could cause root rot or stem rot, which are two conditions that will kill a marijuana plant.

Problems with nutrients

Many marijuana growers find that the most common nutrient deficiencies are in either one or each of these nutrients , nitrogen, phosphorus and potassium. Nitrogen is essential for leafy growth; without it leaves will be pale green or yellowish-green and may develop a scorched appearance. When nitrogen is not present, the weakened health of the plant may attract infestation or even a fungus, if not attended to. In the long run it will also have a negative effect on your yield.

Phosphorus is essential for root development; without it, roots will be stunted and leaves can be discolored brown or red. Potassium provides the plant with the sugars that it needs to grow and develop. Every time you water your plants, use a high-nitrate fertilizer such as fish emulsion or compost tea, for best results.

Marijuana seedling is covered by the soil, so it has something to push off from.

The plant can be placed in a container made for growing marijuana with proper drainage designed into it or in a container of any size as long as there are drainage holes in the bottom. The container can be made of any material, just know that pots with good drainage are recommended for marijuana seedlings and plants for the long run.

The grow medium, soil mix in this case, is placed on top of the drainage holes so that it is 2-4 inches from the top of the container. The grow medium should be an organic mixture of peat moss and vermiculite, perlite or sand.

The marijuana seedling is placed on top of the grow medium. The container is then filled with the mixture around the marijuana seedling up to just an inch below the top edge of the container.

The marijuana seedlings peels off its own shell when it comes out of the medium

Marijuana seedlings should be placed in a well lit area until they can handle being outdoors. They need to have at least 10 hours of light per day. The marijuana seedling peels off its own shell when it comes out of the medium and will need to be placed in a new, larger pot with moist soil. Your marijuana seedling can grow into a plant that can become about 6 feet tall, but it will take a few months until the plant is mature enough for harvesting marijuana buds. So this next movement of your marijuana seedling should be into the pot where it will grow into maturity.

When the shell is removed, helmet head comes up

The “helmet head” is the name given to when a marijuana seedling’s shell is naturally being removed. When this does not happen, it usually means that one of two things have occurred: either that the seedling was eaten by an animal, or that it has been planted too deep and the marijuana seedling never sees the light of day and dies.

If the latter is true, then you should plant your cannabis seeds about a half inch to three quarters of an inch deep.

Sometimes, marijuana seedlings will not break the shell off on their own and need assistance. However, chances are as they mature the seed shell will fall away on its own and needs no manual assistance, let nature do its thing.

Sometimes, the marijuana seedling will show up with yellow sprouts

This could be an indication that your marijuana seedling needs more light and less water. The plant should be moved closer to direct sunlight. It would be good practice to use a meter to measure water content of the soil.


How do you care for your little baby marijuana seedlings?

Trying to get your marijuana seedlings to grow successfully can be difficult because there are so many things you have to take into consideration. It’s important for them not only to look healthy, but to be healthy too.

When you purchase a water meter, get one that also reads soil levels of ph, conductivity and sunlight as you do not want to underwater or overwater your plants. You want to be on top of  monitoring the pH level and anything else you can measure.

At this time of your marijuana seedlings life you also want to begin staking them so they can get support, as sometimes the base stem can get very long as the plant begins to reach for the sun.

If your seedling produces a very long base stem, when it is time to transplant into their permanent environment, plant the whole seedling deeper into the soil, as more roots will grow off of the main stem when exposed to soil. Now the plant will not be as lanky as it could have been, which could ultimately lead to difficulty supporting the leafy plant and big buds you hope to develop. The extra root system will also prove to be beneficial, as well.

How often should I water my plant?

Marijuana seedlings need filtered water to survive, as all plants do, but they should not get too much. The right amount of watering will depend on the size and age of the plant, as well as the light in your grow room or your garden. Generally speaking, a marijuana seedling’s roots need to be watered every two days.

For marijuana plants that have been growing for more than six weeks, they will need to be watered every day, unless you have drought resistant seeds. It also depends on the medium or soil you grow in, as well. Some soil mixes can be designed to hold water and therefore may need to be watered every other day or every 3 days.

If you are growing outdoors consider the rain, if you live near the ocean consider the moisture that drifts in with oceanic condensation, if you experience weather with lots of clouds and little or no sun realize that your plants do not dry out. The best thing is to have a water meter and test daily.

How long does it take to grow marijuana seedlings into plants that you can harvest?

Marijuana plants can take anywhere from three months up to one year to grow, depending on the type of marijuana plant you are growing, where you are growing it and how you are growing it, or how long you decide to keep your plant in veg state. There are so many variations to consider, however, don’t let that  confuse you or get in your way of growing marijuana. 

Cannabis that is grown outdoors will usually be ready for harvest in about three to four months if autoflowering, five to seven if indica, or six to eight for hybrid, seven to ten if sativa…. roughly. Marijuana that is grown indoors may take anywhere from six to nine months, but this can vary depending on the type of marijuana plant you are growing and how well your plants are fed and are maturing.

When does the marijuana seedlings turn into a vegetation phase?

The veg stage of marijuana plants can vary depending on the type of plant you are growing, how well your plants are fed and what condition they are in. Veg state will typically begin after the seedling grows and several rows of leaves form. In some cases it can range from week 7-week 10.

Green color in plants is due to chlorophyll

As we learned in grade school, chlorophyll is created from exposure to light as it mixes with water in combination with the nutrients of the soil and activates inside your plant. If your leaves turn yellow and the cloud cover has been heavy, then you may need to provide the plant with artificial light for a few days, until it begins to turn green. Your leaves should be dark green if it is healthy.

Also, be sure to utilize an appropriate organic soil mix – one part potting soil, one part perlite, and two parts vermiculite and be sure the pH is around 6.7. The water in the soil mix should be kept moist, not wet. Test your soil frequently to prevent under and over watering.

First true leaves

Marijuana Seedling Marijuana Seed Connect

The first true leaves that emerge from a marijuana seedling are the cotyledons. They have different shapes to them and grow in pairs opposite each other with the main stem in between.

Most of the growth in the marijuana seedling phase is in the root zone

A marijuana plant has a lifespan of about 6-10 months. The growth phase is the fastest and most vigorous, with plants growing more than two inches per day, but that growth spurt only lasts about three months from the moment of germination.

Most of the growth of your marijuana seedling is in the root zone. The roots will swirl around your small container and need to be removed from that container and transplanted into a larger container, the permanent environment where it will grow for the duration of its beautiful life.

Ultimately, the roots should not be allowed to grow more than two feet down, as this will inhibit their ability to absorb nutrients and water from deeper soil.

Marijuana plants can grow up to 18-60 inches before they are harvested, but the roots should only grow down about two feet deep. It is also at this point that you want to construct a support system of some sort that will be able to support your marijuana plant through to the harvesting stage.


Control height

The marijuana plant is a fast-growing, long-lived annual that produces large amounts of leaves and flowers. The life span of marijuana seedlings can exceed 1 year with appropriate care and environment. Marijuana seedlings can grow to a height of 8-12 inches in 3 weeks.

A marijuana plant will need plenty of light, water and nutrients for optimal growth.

Important dates for growing marijuana seedlings outdoors

The main reason for wanting to grow cannabis outdoors is to take advantage of the sheer power of nature. The sun and rain or manual watering give a plant everything it needs, in abundance. However, there are many disadvantages to growing indoors or outdoors: one thing for sure, you need a large, open space that can be secured from prying eyes and natural elements.

A cannabis plant is an annual plant which means it completes its life cycle in one year. Most marijuana seedlings take five to six weeks before they reach an early flowering stage.

The sun is one of the most important factors in growing marijuana outdoors. Natural sun exposure gives the plant the energy and warmth it needs which leads to healthy growth of its leaves and flowers.


What is marijuana seedling- plant transplanting?

Marijuana seedling plant transplanting is when you take a marijuana seedling and place it in another pot with soil. It’s important to make sure the new container has enough space for roots, water drainage, and healthy oxygen circulation in a location that has the best sun exposure and protection from natural elements.

What are marijuana seedlings?

They are small young plants that will grow into fully flowering marijuana plants that will deliver extreme value once harvested. They can be grown indoors in small pots with soil that can be easily moved at the time when marijuana seedlings need to be hardened to the colder weather outdoors to ready them to be planted in the ground or their container for the rest of their life. The cooler temperature change can shock them if you do not harden them, or introduce them to a cooler temperature for a part of the day in preparation for their permanent placement outdoors.

Some of the most common plants to grow are marijuana indica, sativa, and hybrid of them both.

The lifespan of marijuana plants varies depending on their strain and type. The typical marijuana plant can live up to 16-40 weeks with proper care.

Sex of marijuana seedlings

Male marijuana seedlings, or “staminate” plants, are not used for anything other than breeding. Female marijuana seedlings are the ones that produce THC-rich buds. The sex of a marijuana seedling is not determined until they reach the flowering stage.

Male plants are almost always taller than females, they have longer internodes and more branches with heavy bud production in these areas. Females tend to be bushier and have more leaves.

There is a lot of misinformation about how marijuana seedlings can grow in different climate zones, mainly because experts are not the only ones growing marijuana and sharing their experiences. Home marijuana growers are more relaxed in their experimentation without strict controls and testing regiments and sort of just depend on natural events as they get their desired outcomes.

Marijuana seedlings can grow in all climate zones, however, it is important to know what type of marijuana plant one has for best chance of success for your geographic area.

How to transplant marijuana seedlings

Marijuana seedlings are easy to transplant because they can be transplanted directly into containers of the right size or directly into the ground with the optimal location to get the amount of sun they need.

For a 24-36 inch marijuana plant at maturity it should be at least 12 inches in diameter and deep enough to hold the root system. A 5-7 gallon container is ideal, and obviously deeper than the original pot your cannabis seedling was in, so the roots can grow and spread out into organic soil.

The soil should be a well-draining mix that is low in nutrients and organic matter because marijuana seedlings are light feeders, and they like it a bit on the dry side. Its key is to ensure the roots are not sitting in water.

Aeration is important, so you want to be sure there are good spaces between the soil particles for air to get into the root zone and release gases.

I have always transplanted in the absence of bright day light, early in the morning at around dawn or early in the evening around dusk. You can have a little amount of light to see what you are doing and it really is quite simple.

What I would also suggest is to have the containers all prepared with their soil, with a well hole in the middle of the container, ready and waiting for your marijuana seedling to be transplanted into.

If you are transplanting seedlings outdoors the best time to do it is when they reach 5-8 inches tall and they have at least 5 sets of leaves and the weather will remain above 68 degrees F during the night.

Marijuana seedlings that mature into plants will live for about 4 to 8 weeks in the next stage which is the vegetation stage, depending on the climate and how often it is getting watered and takes in nitrogen.

How to grow marijuana seedlings to harvest:

The best place for your marijuana plant is outdoors, if you wish to be most economical. When you place your marijuana seedling into its permanent location, plant your seedling at least 18 inches away from other plants or buildings so it has room to grow. Also, provide an area that is not exposed to heavy wind, with at least 8 hrs of direct sun.

In most states, it is the law to build a structure around your marijuana plants that can be secured and locked. This goes for both indoor and outdoor gardens.

Marijuana Seedling Stage

In this very tender stage, the beginning of the seedling’s life is where the plants are when they have just sprouted from their medium/soil or rock wool block or starter pots with organic soil or Jiffy pellets and have emerged to have about 4-8 leaves. Enjoy this process during this 2-3 week period from the beginning of germination.

If you germinate your marijuana seeds in Jiffy Pellets, which are small peat pellets that will expand when they get wet and appear to have a soil medium inside the formation, they are easier to transplant. The seed eventually develops roots on the inside, making them perfect for starting seedlings.

Marijuana Seedlings -Marijuana Seed Connect

How to transplant marijuana seedlings:

Transplanting seedlings is a very important stage in growing marijuana plants because it is crucial for the developing roots and leaves in the next stage in order to get to the right size and strength before becoming too large for its space.

Vegetative Growth

The vegetative stage is the next part of a marijuana plant’s life, and it lasts for about six weeks to three months, it all depends on the growers plans on how they want to develop their crop. During this time, the plant grows leaves and stems but does not produce flowers. Lighting plays a significant factor in the length of time you can veg your plants. Therefore growing cannabis outdoors will not provide the right environment allowed in order to prolong a vegetative state for a longer period of time before it will naturally begin to flower.


This stage is when the plant will show its sex , male or female. Males are easy to identify because they develop long, narrow clusters of branches with long, skinny leaves. Male marijuana plants look different than female or feminized marijuana producing plants. Females have short, fat leaves and will produce flowers from the bottom of each branch.

Male marijuana plants are easy to spot as shown above; the appearance actually looks like seeds forming and there are no hairs, like you see in the female plant.

Female plants will develop long clusters of branches with pointed leaves and lots of hairs. The trichomes are the white hair like things you will see popping out of the small balls as they cluster on the plant. Female marijuana plants will continuously produce flowers the entire time it is in the flowering phase.

If your goal is to produce valuable buds, male marijuana plants will not do anything good for your marijuana crop, they will ruin a good harvest.


Marijuana flowers are the most desired part of a cannabis plant because they have high levels of THC, including CBD. Watching your crop mature through the flowering stage is pretty cool. Just know that you can get a seed that is male. The male signs can show up with female signs on the same plant, so as your flowers begin to show, watch very carefully for male signs and remove the plant immediately.

Harvesting and curing your marijuana plants

When it comes to harvesting, you need to be ready. Growers differ on when it is the best time to harvest, which also can be related to the specific strains. It’s best to begin trimming big fan leaves as you get closer to harvest day and to stop feeding your plants nutrients. Some will actually flush the nutrients from their plants the last 2 weeks with plain water. Also, some will not water their plans at all for the last 10 days.

Whatever you do, remove big leaves or dying leaves gradually as you must be careful not to shock the plant and take too many leaves too fast. If it’s really hot, then maybe during the last 5 to 7 days do not water… Some growers stop watering all together for the last 4 days to a week.

Before you cut your whole plant down, trim the majority of the rest of the leaves off, while still in the container it grew in. Then cut the plant into 4-6 sizable branches that you can hang in a dark area with lower humidity and good air circulation. Some growers hang the whole plant intact to dry. However you choose to dry your marijuana plants, monitor them closely so that it does not dry too fast and still remains sticky however a bit dry.

If you grow marijuana plants outdoors, it’s best to cut them down before the sun comes up then get them into a dark room with the proper level of humidity and air circulation. This drying stage should last about 4 days to 10 days depending on how the buds feel to the touch.

Then, when your marijuana plant’s drying time is complete, it is time to finish cleaning the rest of the leaves off and cut the buds off the stems to store in glass containers that you can take the lid off of and burp daily. It will be best to store these jars in a dark place, as well.

Curing Marijuana

This part of the curing process can take one to three weeks, however everyone’s experience can be different. Be aware that this is when mold can grow on your buds, so be sure to open the lid daily and rotate the bottle, as the buds will be sticking together. After all the months you invested into the process, you do not want to have your crop get afflicted with mold.

There are multiple ways growers cure and store their crops, based on if they will smoke the bud, cook with it, make dap with it or produce medicinal oils. We will cover curing marijuana in more depth in another post.

Marijuana Seedlings - Marijuana Seed Connect 1

To assist you further, here are some common FAQs

What do seedlings like?

– Seedlings enjoy a lot of light.

– They enjoy a lot of water.

-They need to be fed fertilizer every day.

-The love of attention.

Why is it so important to harden off seedlings?

It is important to harden the seedlings off because it will help them get used to their new environment with regard to temperature change.

Why not just start in a 5 gallon pot?

Inexperienced growers often make the mistake of starting their seedlings in a 5-gallon pot. This is true for both soil planting and hydroponics. The problem with this is the pot is so big, it takes a long time to fill with roots. It usually means you need a two year old seedling before your 5-gallon pot is filled up and ready to grow a plant through to a proper harvest.

How much do cannabis seeds cost?

The cost of marijuana seeds varies greatly based on their genetics, potency, and popularity. Some of the most expensive marijuana seeds are “old school” Hindu Kush, The White, and Purple Haze.

How do I avoid germination problems?

No matter what type of marijuana seeds you purchase, it is important to make sure they are fresh. Test them by squeezing the seed in your hand and if there is any give at all then they are not good. Pick a place that is secure to engage in the process, and follow the experts. Also, at Marijuana Seed Connect, germination is guaranteed.

When should I harden-off my seedlings?

They should be hardened-off after they have sprouted. Hardening off means taking the seedling out of its protective environment and putting it in a room with reduced light, lower temperatures (about 25 degrees Celsius), and less humidity.

Where can I grow medical cannabis?

You can grow in any of the 18 states that allow it. Be sure to check online which states allow it and what the guidelines are, so you can remain compliant with the law.

When does the vegetative stage for marijuana seedling begin?

Vegetation stage begins after the marijuana seedling has about 8 leaves and lasts a few weeks when growing outdoors. You will also release nutrients to your marijuana seedling so that it can produce a good amount of leaves with strong stems, to produce plentiful and luscious buds.

If you have any questions about harvesting or curing cannabis feel free to reach out to us. As always, Happy growing!

Namaste~ Dr Deb ND

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