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How to Handle Seedling Problems

Apr 16, 2020
Cannabis World

How to Handle Seedling Problems

Seedlings are in their most vulnerable state for the first week or two after germination. They have just sprouted and begun to grow. You must be aware of the problems that could arise as they start to mature. By being aware of the issues that can occur, you will be able to be proactive and protect those tender plants from damages caused by disease and be sure to recoup the investment you have made in purchasing high yield cannabis seeds from

What Is a Seedling?

A seedling is a young plant that has sprouted from a seed. It is in its most vulnerable form because it has not reached maturity. When the weed seed splits, it produces a tender white tendril that digs down into the ground, eventually forming the root of the plant.

As the roots develop, the plant will begin to shoot upwards and grow above the soil. When marijuana first begins to grow, it lacks strength, and many diseases and types of damage can occur during this stage. Thankfully, there are some steps you can take to make sure your seedlings are always protected and can grow big and strong.

Common Seedling Problems You Can Avoid

Being aware of the problems that can occur with marijuana seedlings is essential. If you know the possible issues, you can work to avoid them. The following offers insights into some of the common problems growers experience with seedlings.


Too much water causes plants to drown because of a lack of oxygen. It is easy to overwater a seedling, especially if it has been planted in a large container. Ideally, you should plant seedlings in smaller containers until they grow large and robust enough to be able to be transplanted in the ground or a larger pot. The signs of overwatering include the following.

  • Downward, curled leaves
  • Plant drooping
  • Leaf drop
  • Yellowing at the tips of leaves
  • Stunted plant growth

Seedlings do not take in much water at a time. If you plant a blue dream weed plant in a large pot, it is going to take longer for the water to be utilized or evaporate.

To ensure you do not overwater, make sure to water in a tiny circle around the base of the seedling. Wait until the soil is dry to a one-inch depth before adding more water.

Overwatering can also happen if there is not adequate drainage. You must make sure there are enough drainage holes. With the right level of draining, overwatering can be avoided.

Adding Perlite to your soil mix will help to increase the oxygen in the soil and make it drain more effectively. You will not need to overly worry about runoff until your kush plants begin to mature later.


Underwatering is just as bad as overwatering when it comes to tender seedlings. It is critical seedlings receive an adequate amount of water each day. When you water seedlings, they will lose some of the moisture through a process called transpiration.

Transpiration is a breathing process for plants. Although water is undoubtedly needed for healthy growth, only a small amount of water taken in by plants is used for metabolism and healthy growth. The excess water is evaporated via the leaves, flowers, and stems. The leaves release moisture through the stomata. Stomata can also take in water when they are open.

It is essential to understand the signs of underwatering, which can often be confused for overwatering. If you know overwatering is not an issue and notice the following symptoms, underwatering could be to blame.

  • Drooping leaves
  • Plant seems lifeless
  • Leaves are papery and thin
  • Yellowing leaves
  • Bone dry soil

Sometimes, it can be challenging to determine if you are underwatering because the signs above mimic overwatering and nutritional deficiencies. An easy method of determining the problem is observing the plants after watering. If they suddenly perk up, they are likely getting too little water.

Monitoring your autoflower seedlings for signs of water problems is critical for their health. Do not allow the soil to become completely dry, or your seedlings will suffer. If you see the soil has separated from the sides of the container, this means the plant is in desperate need of water.

Underwatering is simple to fix. All you need to do is make sure to start watering more frequently. Even if your plants are showing signs of problems due to underwatering, do not make the mistake of suddenly watering too much, or they will become damaged.

There is no particular schedule to follow when it comes to watering seedlings. Make sure to monitor their appearance and check the soil moisture level daily.

Nutrient Deficiencies

Nutrient deficiencies are also a prime problem for seedlings. There are multiple nutrition problems, including not enough, too much, and the wrong kind. Knowing the unique nutritional needs of seedlings and being able to recognize the signs of problems is critical for protecting young marijuana plants.

When marijuana plants do not receive the nutrients they require, this can place them in a state of shock. Because seedlings are already vulnerable, shock can end up causing them to die. The following offers some insight into some of the signs of nutrient problems.

Nutrient Deficiencies

  • Leaf yellowing
  • Darkening at the tips of the leaves
  • Brown and yellow spots on leaves
  • Leaf curling
  • Stunted growth

One of the most common nutrient deficiencies you will find in cannabis seedlings is a lack of nitrogen. Nitrogen is imperative through every stage of plant development, whether you are growing gsc seeds or do si dos seeds from i49.

Nutrient Toxicity

  • Increasingly deep green colors in the leaves
  • Fluorescent yellow leaf tips
  • Leaf tips that bend downward
  • Stalks and branches become purplish
  • Dying leaf tips

If you are using the wrong nutrients, some of the same symptoms can occur. In the beginning stages, it is better to use fewer nutrients than too many. Seedlings do not require a lot of nutrients in the beginning. Use a good marijuana feed, preferably one that is made explicitly for seedlings.

Should you notice the signs of nutrient toxicity or burn, simply water until it flows out of the holes of the container freely. The seedling will adjust and continue to grow, eventually getting the excess nutrients out of its cells.

Too Much Heat

While cannabis plants require warmth, too much heat can be detrimental to the seedling’s growth. If you want your seedlings to grow well and not experience signs of heat increase, keep the temperatures in the grow room between 70-77 degrees. Anything over this temperature will cause the seedlings to go into heat shock, which will cause curling leaves that almost resemble a boat or even a taco. It is also essential to avoid placing the lights too close to the seedlings or burns could occur.

Lighting Issues

As you likely realize, plants require light to grow. Without the proper amount of light, they cannot carry out photosynthesis, which is a necessary process involved in making food energy. Too little lighting is just as detrimental as too much. You may experience the following signs if there are problems with the lights in the grow room.

  • Shriveled leaves
  • Burned leaves
  • Leggy plants
  • Large spaces between nodes

In most cases, it is reasonably easy to correct lighting problems. If the lights are too close, and they are causing burns, simply move them farther away from the plants. If there is not enough light, move the lights closer. Seedlings will typically respond quickly once light corrections have been made.

Providing the Perfect Growing Environment for Marijuana Seedlings

Seedlings are baby plants, and they need a lot of TLC and protection to ensure they do not experience problems with growth. For most strains of cannabis, the seedling stage lasts between two to three weeks.

During this period, you will need to consistently monitor the growing conditions of your plants and make sure no signs of growth issues are occurring. There is not a lot that seedlings need, but they do require the proper balance of moisture, light, and warmth.

It is recommended you start seedlings indoors because this allows you to manage their growing conditions. Growing  original weed seedlings outdoors puts them at a higher risk of developing problems due to a lack of moisture or too much sun.

If you want to increase the chances of your seedlings faring well, purchase clones. With good genetics, clones are less likely to experience diseases that can lead to plant death.

The Bottom Line

Taking care of seedlings is worth the effort. Depending on the strain, it is possible to harvest within three to five months.

The care you take in the seedling stage is critical for the yield of buds. It takes a few weeks for marijuana seeds to grow and enter the vegetative stage. Once rapid growth begins occurring, it will not be long before your cannabis plants are growing bigger and stronger.

Check your seedlings a couple of times a day and monitor for any signs of nutrient deficiencies, light problems, and water issues. By paying attention to the appearance of the seedlings, you will be able to know if any adjustments need to be made. With a little work and a lot of attention to detail, anyone can successfully grow our cheap weed seeds and help all he way through to a bountiful harvest.

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