Germination- Temperature and Moisture Levels


Germination of your indoor houseplants can be directly related to the temperature and moisture. You will find valuable facts and information on how to keep your soil temperature and moisture levels at the correct level and the basic germination requirements needed.

Temperature and Moisture Levels

Germination can be delayed or completely inhibited if the temperature of the soil mix is too low. In a home where the temperature is maintained at 68 degrees, the temperature of the germination soil mix may actually be 5 to 10 degrees lower than the surrounding air. Evaporation of moisture from the soil mix can lower the temperature below the optimum for seed germination.

Germination soil mix placed in a sunny window will warm enough during the day so that another heat source is usually not needed. Fluorescent lights do not provide enough warmth, so bottom hear is necessary for seeds started under lights.

"Heat Mat"

Electric Heat Mat

How to use heat mats and heat cables

Waterproof propagation heat mats or heat cables are two of the types of bottom-heating divides that can be used. Place the germinating seed containers directly on top of them.

To provide the optimum temperature for germination and to keep the mats or cables from overheating the soil mix, a special thermostat is attached to the heating device. Place the temperature-sensing probe attached to the thermostat into the germination soil mix.

"Heat Thermostat"

Regulate temps with a heat Thermostat

Once the seeds have started to germinate, they require constant moisture to be able to survive. With most seeds, the roots will start to grow before the new shoots. If the soil mix is allowed to dry out, the seedlings will be killed. The bottom heat will accelerate the drying of the soil mix, and within a few hours a moist soil mix can become too dry.

Simply touching the surface of the soil mix with your finger will indicate the moisture level. A moist soil mix will feel damp like a moist sponge. Watering the soil mix on the surface works well, but provide some way to catch excess moisture the flows from the drain holes.

*Tip- To water a large number of containers, attach a fog-producing nozzle to a hose. The dense fog moistens the soil mix yet is gentle enough that the seeds or seedlings are not disturbed.

Here are some products that will help you regulate the heat on your plants.

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