How and When to Transplant Cannabis Seedlings

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When to transplant cannabis seedlings?

When you start raising seedlings, you’ll likely start by growing in cups or small grow bags, this way they can grow faster during the early stages. They will start to sprout and grow under your careful care, and when cannabis seedlings are big enough that their leaves can touch the edge of the pot (or cup), you will need to transplant them into a larger pot.

transplant cannabis seedlings

To transplant cannabis seedlings is important, why?

First of all, why do we grow seedlings in small containers? There are two main reasons. One is that if you grow seedlings directly in the final large pots (usually 5-gallon pots), you will need a lot of soil and other resources and you don’t know if the seedlings will even be successful. This would be a waste of resources—ultimately, it’s not worth it. As well, seedlings don’t require LEDs—just fluorescent or incandescent bulbs, so you’ll be moving your plants around a crowded grow space if you start them in larger pots.

On the other hand, it is more beneficial to grow seedlings in small containers. A small amount of growing medium will dry faster and your seedling roots will easily get more oxygen for faster growth. Of course, if you think transplanting is too difficult for you, it is also possible to plant directly into the large, final pots.

How do I transplant cannabis seedlings?

A Fine question! We’ll break it down into steps.

Germinating seeds-transplant cannabis seedlings

Germinate-Transplant Cannabis Seedlings

Before transplanting, we need to learn how to germinate your seeds. There are a few methods to do this and we’ve outlined it in another article but we’ll go over it quickly here. We can put the seeds inside a folded damp paper towel. Put another paper towel between the plates to prevent it from drying out. Watch your seedlings and check on them at leastevery 12 hours until the seeds split open and thin white taproots grow. Keep them in a warm place (75-80°F) or use a seedling heat pad if your ambient temperature is not sufficient.

Growing in a cup-transplant cannabis seedlingsgrowing in a cup-Transplant Cannabis Seedlings

As mentioned earlier, germinated seeds will grow quickly in a plastic cup, and once the leaves hit the edge of the cup, it is ready to be transplanted or your plant will suffocate.

The first transplant
The first transplant should take place when the seedling has pulled out 4-5 sets of leaves. We need to keep the surroundings clean and hygienic, so wear gloves and sprinkle a little water on the leaves of the plants (please be careful not to get it in the soil).

Prepare a new pot with the right amount of soil. Be careful not to damage or touch the roots of your plants when moving your seedlings, or your plants may go into shock. Be careful and transplant the plants into new pots as soon as possible. Once transplanting is complete, provide your plants with ample water.

If your plant is unfortunate enough to shock during transplantation (communicated by drooping leaves, slow growth, etc.) you can use seaweed/kelp extract to help your cannabis recover.

Additional transplanting-transplant cannabis seedlings

There are two situations in which you may need additional transplants. The first is when you have planned additional transplants, such as if you have moved the seedling to a veg-stage pot and then plan to move it again for flowering. You’ll need to transplant your plant into the final pot 1-2 weeks before flowering—you won’t want to disturb it while it’s blooming.

The second might be when you have moved to what you think is the final pot but for whatever reason (such as the plant’s roots being overcrowded, the plant growing larger than you thought, etc.), you may need to put it into a new pot. Please choose a new pot that is twice the size of the old pot.

After transplanting into the final pot, you can wait for your plant to bloom. Note that plants may grow to 1-3 times their original size by the end of flowering.

Wrap-up: how to transplant cannabis seedlings

Should our seedling planting start from a small container or directly from a large pot? I think it’s entirely up to you. Growing in large pots can be a problem with over- or under-watering, but as long as you are careful, there is nothing wrong with planting in large pots, other than slow growth.

The benefit of using a small cup is that the seedlings will grow faster, but they will need to be transplanted into other larger pots eventually. Don’t worry too much about it: if you treat your plants well they will grow happily.

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