Germination pH, does it matter?

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TryingToGrow

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Hi all.
I was just wondering the ideal pH for germination? Even very early seedling stages if left in the ‘germination water’/‘germination medium’/paper towel/etc. so long that that the plant starts to need light.

I was doing a little home experiment the other day, trying different pH water, range of 4.0-7.5pH skipping by 0.5 the whole way. My mistake was to use the water to soak a paper towel in the pH’ed because the paper towel made the pH of the water ~irrelevant. It always would rise to 7 and more, I didn’t pay a lot of attention after seeing this though, just always out if range on the high side.

I have started my home experiment againnearly on day 3, this time I’m just using shot glasses of pH’ed water to germinate the seeds.

What I wonder is which pH will do the best?

I just saw a day or two ago where Bruce Bugbee was on Reddit a little while back and he stated the following...
E507F238-0EF3-4320-87E4-40CC13D79AAA.png


I noticed that he said this after starting my experiment, though I do try to keep all my mediums the same, 5.7-5.9 ish now.

So that is what I was thinking anyways. But I also wonder the ~longer term effects of germination in a ~medium that is so far out of range on the pH. I will be using all the seeds to grow out, at least a little ways, in the cups as long as possible to see what they do, and how much difference between different pH.

So normally, if doing a paper towel method there is only a day or so spent in the paper towel. This will not be very similar to that, at the time, I should have put the ones that didn’t germ in a paper towel into a cup of 5.9 water to see if the initial high pH paper towel, also made them no longer viable.

I’m just doing this for fun, I always just plant my seeds in the ~5.9 pH soil now and everything germinates.

4C4B8CAE-D351-4D1D-B0D8-733374A35D80.jpeg


FAC2E2AC-F096-4EA1-8553-A5AFFF87723D.jpeg

I have them elevated now so there won’t be any hot spots from the heat mat. 70-75F.

So, what do you think is ideal pH for germination?

And, do you think it will harm germination rate if you soak or use paper towel that the pH is to far out of range, prior to putting the seed into the medium?
 
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TryingToGrow

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So it’s been about three and a half days since putting the seeds into the cups. Here is the results.

7.5
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7.0
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6.5
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6.0
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5.5
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5.0
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4.5
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4.0
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gonna put the good ones into the grow master now.

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TryingToGrow

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So after I removed all the seeds, I remeasured the pH in all the cups. It was pretty close to 7.0 for everything, even the 4.0 was right around 7.0 pH

For this experiment I used 0 ppm rain water with a starting pH 6.2. I had assumed since it was 0 ppm rain water that the pH would be more stable and not exactly sure when/how long it took to get that high. My tap water is even worse (I thought), that’s why I used rain water.

I know I can watch on the weather radar and my rain water is coming to me from the Great Lakes via wet surface air coolers, what they do to it for it to be so unstable is unknown to me.

still with all that, the 5.5 and 6.0 appeared to do the best. Might try again if I can find out how to get the pH of water to stop rising so much, so I can get better results.

Also, I used baking soda for pH up and vinegar for pH down.
 
P

Pike

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So what’s the conclusion? Sorry posted at same time

we can all read that 6.0 is the one anywhere online, I’m happy to see a grower actually do the deed and see for himself if the info found is right.

nice project
 
Fuzzy_Buzzy

Fuzzy_Buzzy

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The age of each seed is another variable. The older it is, the longer that shell will take to crack. Really OLD seeds I lightly sandpaper the end, and then soak it overnight in water with 2 drops of H2o2, place in final container once I see a tap.
 
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TryingToGrow

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The age of each seed is another variable. The older it is, the longer that shell will take to crack. Really OLD seeds I lightly sandpaper the end, and then soak it overnight in water with 2 drops of H2o2, place in final container once I see a tap.

I agree and would imagine this matters for germination rate as well. All seeds in my experiment are the same age/plant, no seeds were ‘tampered’ with in any way.

I prefer to just put the seed in dirt that is pH’ed to 5.8 in a humidity dome, 75-85 F. Always 3 days to pop like that for me.

In the past I have had seeds that won’t pop in tap water (7.0+ pH), paper towel, or soaking, then used sandpaper but I probably already messed them up with the tap water or paper towel.
 
T

TryingToGrow

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So what’s the conclusion? Sorry posted at same time

we can all read that 6.0 is the one anywhere online, I’m happy to see a grower actually do the deed and see for himself if the info found is right.

nice project
Based off this for me, it looks like 5.5-6.5 starting water did the best. I would like to try Again when I can find water that is stable.
I guess though, I should make sure it’s not the seeds themselves changing the pH. That would be crazy lol.
 
T

TryingToGrow

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Sounds like the conclusion is, the proper pH is, moist.

I was inspired to do this because my germination rate was low when I soak in tap water or tap water paper towel method.

Just moist is fine if you don’t care about germination rate, imo.

I no longer soak, paper towel or anything else because germination rate is to low. Just straight into moist 5.8pH soil, in a humidity dome set to 70-75F and pretty much 100% germination rate, can’t recall last time a seed didn’t germ for me like this.
 
Oldchucky

Oldchucky

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Always use distilled. Seems to work OK.Getting them to germinate is the least of my problems. LOL
 
Oldchucky

Oldchucky

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Experimenting is never a bad thing though. I hope you come up with something.Trying different methods is the fun part of this gig.
 
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