Germinating the seeds
When to plant -- Plant your seeds when you receive them for best germination.
Getting started -- You may plant each seed in individual, small containers. Or you plant them all in a single container, but it may be more difficult to transplant them later. Either way, use pots with drainage holes.
For soil, use a well draining mix high in organic matter. A typical mix is 2 parts potting soil to 1 part perlite (use small- or medium-grade perlite, not coarse-grade). An alternate mix is 1 part perlite to 1 part coir fiber, with some granular fertilizer mixed in.
Gently place a seed in each pot
(or if using a communal pot, space them about 1 inch (2.5 cm) from each other).
If you have
long-fibered sphagnum moss (not ground peat moss), sprinkle a very thin layer
on top. This helps retain
moisture around the seeds while allowing light to reach them, which aids
This photo shows how much moss to use. If you do not have sphagnum
moss, sprinkle some perlite or vermiculite on top. Add water until everything is evenly moist (but not soggy).
The ideal temperature for germination is between 65 to 77 degrees F (18-25°C). A little cooler at night is ok. Avoid letting them get above 80° F (27°C). I recommend placing a minimum/maximum thermometer near the pots.
An LED or fluorescent bulb kept 4 inches (10 cm) away provides the right amount of
light (See: "Growing indoors with LED lights"!). Protect from direct sun.
Fertilizing -- For the first 6 weeks, feed weekly with a small amount of diluted liquid fertilizer (1/8 strength). Hydroponic fertilizer is ideal for small seedlings, since it is easily absorbed and complete. After 6 weeks, you may switch to a granular fertilizer that contains micronutrients, or continue feeding weekly with dilute liquid fertilizer.
It's normal for a leaf to occasionally turn yellow and drop, but if it seems excessive, the soil may be too dry down in the root zone, or the plant may need more nitrogen fertilizer.
Transplanting -- When your plants are 2-3 months old, you may gently
transfer them to a larger pot. Water the soil first, and avoid letting the
soil ball break apart, which can damage the roots. After transplanting,
give no sun or liquid fertilizer the first week.
40-50% humidity is best. If your plants seem to suffer from low humidity
indoors, consider using an ultrasonic room humidifier, sold at
home improvement stores and some thrift shops.
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