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cannabis seeds sprout then die

When a seedling has already toppled-over from damping-off, there is nothing you can do to recover it. The best you can do is quickly remove the affected seedling together with its cup to prevent the spread of disease to other seedlings.

Unfortunately, damping-off can happen very quickly. Many times, a seedling can go from looking healthy to dropping dead in just one single day. When this happens, it is already too late to do anything since the fungus has already infected your plant and there is no method of recovery. However, you can learn to spot the signs of damping-off in order to prevent it from happening again.



You just got new seeds and are looking forward to starting a new grow. After you put your seed in a cup or Jiffy pellet, you watch excitedly as it comes to life; the seed cracks its shell and is now making its way upward towards the light. You watch as the tiny seedling unfolds its first set of tiny leaves. So far, everything is looking great. A few days later, as you check on your new green friend, you find that it has drooped over. Frantically, you try to revive it, maybe by watering some more or administering some of those “special nutrients” – but no dice. Unexpectedly, your seedling has died and you’re stumped. How could this have happened?

The second factor can be that the substrate has been wet for too long, most likely from overwatering or due to poor drainage qualities.

When one seedling has already died from damping-off, chances are that your other seedlings are affected too, even if they’re still standing upright. One emergency measure you can try to stop the fungus from spreading is applying hydrogen peroxide. Sprinkle about 1ml (20 drops) of 3% strength peroxide onto the soil of each of your seedlings. The peroxide will kill the fungus. Obviously, there is no guarantee this will save your seedlings, especially if the disease has already progressed quite far. What’s most important is that you know how to prevent this occurrence from happening in the future.

Excess moisture from overwatering or high humidity are normally the culprits of damping-off. Check your substrate often to observe if the moisture levels are adequate. Avoid too-frequent watering and make sure that your pots or plastic cups allow for fast and easy drainage. If you use a greenhouse or grow-tent with a cover for cuttings, ensure there is a vent on top that allows for proper ventilation. If there is no vent, remove the cover regularly. Always keep in mind that warm and humid means an increased risk of fungus and damping-off.

Our reputation as a reliable seed company is based on constant and strictest quality control by our breeders. From production to packaging we scrutinize the quality of every seed and select by hand. Our selection is so strict that we also dismiss perfectly healthy seeds simply because of a smaller size or unusual shape.

Some or all seedlings fell over and died

This is usually caused by a fungal disease called "damping off". The cause is infected soil, waterlogged substrate, high humidity. any conditions that promote fungus. The fungus attacks the soft tissue in the stem which withers at the base or midway. The seedling collapses and dies. Another possible cause is that the seedlings died from lack of water or a high salt level in the substrate (which basically has the same effect of drying out the plant). Seedlings have only a small amount of roots and few leaves. They cannot retain much water and quickly dry out. High humidity in the grow space does not compensate for a desiccated substrate. Your soil/rockwool has to be moist enough to sustain healthy roots and provide water to the plant. Photo shows “damping off”.
Outdoor frost can kill seedlings overnight. Keep your seedlings indoor until there is no danger of sudden frost. See our GERMINATION GUIDE for great product tips on how to keep your seedlings warm outdoor or in the greenhouse.

Seedling Problems

There are 3 possibilities:

First of all, thanks to the creators, moderators, as well as the great members of this site. It’s been wonderful read. I had successfully grown 2 female plants in 2011, and it was a great experience.

Then I thought the problem is that the seeds are old. So I ordered new seeds early this year, but the same thing keeps happening again. I’ve tried all possible remedies for damping off/pythium/rhizoctonia, such as chamomile tea, garlic, cinnamon, h2o2, fungicide, but none has been helpful. I even tried growing them at 2 different indoor sites (in different houses). I’m in a tropical country with about 75 Fahrenheit average room temperature. My grow setup is the same as my last successful attempt, with CFLs and vermiculite / coco peat / perlite soil mix. But all the same. Here’s a picture of my latest seedling. It’s been the same size for 4 days now, same green color though, but I’m afraid and almost certain that in a few days time, it will follow the footsteps of its dead peers and simply fall off to its demise

But then in early 2013, after careful storage of the remaining seeds (i placed them in airtight container along with some rice grains at nice constant cool fridge temperature), I wanted to relive the thrill. Most of the regular strain germinated fine within 2 days time (the autoflower seeds seemed to have died off, all didn’t germinate). But that’s all they did.. germinated and sprouted till about 2 inch in height, showing only the first pair of true leaves. Some only germinated, but won’t even break through the soil level. The ones that do make it to 1 -2 inches stopped growing and then died either from wilting at mid-stem, or just turned yellow, withered and died.

Anyway, getting to my point, I want to ask for some advice on how to overcome this really annoying and frustrating problem I can’t seem to get rid of since last year. So, in August 2011, I had 20 seeds that I ordered in 2011. 10 Autoflower strain, and 10 regular indoor/outdoor strain. Germinated 4 seeds from each strain no problem, planted, and reaped the reward within 2-4 months (I got 2 females from each strain, but due to limited grow space, only 1 female from each strain were grown to harvest). Very nice sinsemilla smoke, awesome taste and aroma (I got a lowmaster and crude oil, both from dutchbreed).

Can anyone please shed some light on what else I should do? I’m down to my last 4 seeds (it’s killer super blueberry, and I hear its a really nice strain)