If you are experiencing poor seed germination, these are a few of the most common reasons:
- Soil Temperature - Soil temperature is critical for good germination. The ideal germination temperature will vary depending on your crop. Some crops, such as, lettuce and spinach, prefer cool temperatures. Peppers and tomatoes prefer warmer temperatures to germinate. To achieve your crops optimum germinating temperature you may need to use a heat mat or provide shade for the crops that prefer cooler temperatures.
- Lighting - For crops that do require light exposure to germinate you may have to provide supplemental lighting or don't cover the seed at all. Many crops do not require supplemental lighting.
- Watering - Inconsistent or lack of enough water is a common reason for poor germination. Water frequently enough to keep the growing media consistently moist, but not soggy. Seeds need consistent moisture to germinate, however overwatering can promote mold and disease
Germination Days - Depending on your crop, some take a long time to germinate and have uneven germination, seeds will emerge much earlier than others, despite being in the same tray with the same growing conditions. Other crops emerge quickly and evenly.
All growing information can usually be found on your seed package or seed catalogue.