7 Tricks To Get Old A$$ Marijuana Seeds To Germinate in 2021

How To Germinate Old Marijuana Seeds

I germinated 5+ year old marijuana seeds this week and the results were more surprising than I thought they would be.

We recently emptied out our storage unit and found a stash of marijuana seeds from at least 5 years ago. I think they are closer to 7 years old BUT I know they are at least 5 years old so let’s go with that for an overall guestimation.

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sssdh

9lb Hammer and SSSDH Seeds

To my surprise, there were 2 strains which included the 9 pound hammer ( also known as 9lb hammer ) from jinxproof and super silver sour diesel haze from connoisseur genetics ( also known as sssdh ). By the way, in 2021 I now have my own 9lb hammer f2 crosses and a 9lb hammer x sssdh now. Boy are they potent!

I had 10x 9 pound hammers and 2x sssdh seeds to work with.

9lb hammer

Before I get to the bad news, let’s get the great news shared with all of you.

9 out of 10 of the 9 pound hammer seeds sprouted and 1 of the 2 sssdh seeds sprouted.

What Are The Germination Rates For Old Seeds

For being over 5 years old, I was wondering what the germination rates might be and they were far better than I expected. Thankfully I was able to get some of these seeds to germinate so I can continue on with these great old school genetics.

germinating marijuana seeds

Tricks To Get Seeds To Germinate Faster

During this test and many others over the years I have located 7 tricks that can get the most stubborn old ass marijuana seeds to pop for you. You can use one or all of them but at the end, they should pop unless they are beyond savable. 

I have them listed below and remember that you can use one or all of these tricks to get your seeds to sprout especially if they are older. There will be new methods added to this page as they are tested. As you will notice, some of these methods are “missing” but that is only due to me updating them with new content.

sprouting marijuana seeds

Trick #1 Freezer Method

I have used this trick when I have stubborn or hard shelled seeds to deal with. It works perfect for old marijuana seeds as well.

All you need to do is place your marijuana seeds in a plastic bag or as I prefer a small glass vial with a sealed top ( pic to come ). and put uncooked white rice in it to help with any possible moisture that can happen.

This not only helps remove moisture but kick starts the seeds into thinking that it is going through a winter and after the thaw, it will be their time to shine and start popping out of those shells.

So, if you have tried to get old seeds to crack open and sprout, try the freezer method. I tend to leave the seeds in there for at least a week but have had great results leaving them in a freezer for only 3 days.

When you remove them, remember to open the bag or unscrew the lid and let the seeds breath and get rid of the possible moisture from going from frozen to a thawed environment. Another reason why the rice kernels are worth keeping in there with your seeds.

Trick #2 Shot Glass Method

marijuana seed germination

The shotglass method works for most growers. I have used this plus the paper towel and hydrogen peroxide methods with success 9 out of 10 times.

Pre-soaking the seeds is a great way to make sure and get the hard outershell to loosen up and allow it to crack to let the germinating marijuana sprout to pop out and start enjoying life.

Trick #3 Hydrogen Peroxide Method

I would use the hydrogen peroxide method along with the shotglass/paper towel method since they really do go hand in hand. Within the shotglass you add a capful of the hydrogen peroxide then fill the glass up with clean water about half way.

Take your finger or a pen or something that can push the seeds down into the water/hydrogen peroxide solution for at least 10 seconds. You will see some seeds start to sink immediately whereas others will continue to float ontop of the water.

For the next 2 days, take a finger/pen/tool and push the seeds down for 10 seconds, you will notice that more and more seeds start to sink. These seeds that are on the bottom are ready to start sprouting, any seeds still floating still need to have their outer shell loosened for another day or two before moving onto the next step.

Trick #4 Dunk and Drown Method

germinate old marijuana seeds

This drowning method is exactly what was described above. You have to get the seeds into the water/hydrogen peroxide solution so it can start working on the hardened shell of the marijuana seeds. This is especially needed when dealing with old seeds.

Once you see that they sink and stay down at the bottom of the glass then it is time to move onto the paper towel method. This is where you will see why the presoaking was such a game changer when it comes to germination rates.

Trick #5 Paper Towel Method

The paper towel method is very easy. Once you have your seeds sinking to the bottom of the shotglass or whatever container you put them in. Now it is time to put a little water on a paper towel and wring it out so it isn’t dripping water but simply “wet”.

You then take all of the seeds that have sunk to the bottom of the glass/cup and put them onto the wet paper towel. You want to them lightly fold the paper towel around the seeds and put this in a zip lock bag. You want to make sure the bag has some air in it so don’t try and remove excess air fully or you will end up killing the seeds before they even have a chance to survive.

Next up is to place this ziplock bag that is holding the seeds within a damp paper towel onto something warm. I use my seedling heat mat but ontop of a computer tower, tv or anything that is warm but not hot. I have used an old cable box but you can easily use a bluray or dvd player or anything for that matter.

Trick #6 Cable Box Method

Now that cable boxes are not really a thing, they do have many uses like keeping seeds warm enough to germinate but not too hot to dry them out and kill them. Each day though you need to check on the seeds within the paper towel and add a little bit of water daily/every 2 days to make sure that the paper towel stays damp but the seeds are not actually resting in water drowning.

getting old marijuana seeds to germinate

Trick #7 Take Off Their Head Method

The taking their heads off method is more of a last resort when trying to get stubborn seed shells to crack fully open. Sometimes they will only crack partially and it seems impossible to get the seedling to crack the shell fully on its own.

You can assume that this seedling might be a weakling and not worth trying to save OR you might assume that it could be some amazing keeper pheno that the world will miss IF you can’t get it out of its shell.

One thing that has worked for me is to take a toothpick or really small nail/sewing needle and pry the shell off the seedling with as little force as possible. Once it is opened up enough you will see that seedling start to grow up and out of the rest of the shell with no issues or problems.

marijuana germinating old seeds

These are the basic and work 99% of the time. Most times the only reason a seed doesn’t germinate us due to you letting it dry out and shrivel up BEFORE it is put in a medium and allowed to root.

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