How to Germinate Barley Seed


Farmers grow barley for livestock feed, human food and as an ingredient for the malting industry. Growing it can present some problems, however, as the seed tends to die off from fungal diseases. Purchase resistant seeds or seeds that have been treated with fungicide to help reduce the risk of die-off. Knowledge of how to germinate the seed can help you produce a healthy crop of barley to sell or use on your own.

Step 1

Place a moist paper towel on a plate and the barley seeds on top of that. Place more moist paper towels on top of the seeds. This will provide the moisture needed for germination.

Step 2

Place the plate in a paper bag or a black plastic bag. This will control the heat and light that the seeds receive. Store the seeds in a warm area, such as on top of the refrigerator.

Step 3

Check the seeds daily, replenishing water to the paper towels if necessary. The seeds should start to germinate in about four days.

Things You'll Need

  • Plate
  • Moist paper towels
  • Paper bag or black plastic bag


  • Boston University: Germinating Seeds
  • Valdosta State University: The Germination of Barley Seeds
  • University of Missouri Extension: Growing Barley
Keywords: germinating barley seed, growing barley, planting barley

About this Author

Sarah Morse recently graduated with a Bachelor of Arts in English language and literature. She has been freelancing for three months and got her start writing for an environmental website.