Growth chamber and laboratory experiments evaluated the effects of seed-soil microsite characteristics on seed germination. When corn (Zea mays L. ‘Pioneer 3541’), soybean [Glycine max (L.) Merr. ‘Corsoy 79’], velvetleaf (Abutilon theophrasti Medic. ♯ ABUTH), and giant foxtail (Setaria faberi Herrm. ♯ SETFA) were seeded among soil aggregates 2.50 to 1.25 cm in diameter in the growth chamber, there was decreased seedling emergence with decreasing frequency of irrigation. These same species seeded inside artificial soil aggregates showed increased seedling emergence with decreasing frequency of irrigation. The germination of corn and soybean seed inside 0.4-g, fully moist soil aggregates incubated in the laboratory under high relative humidity conditions was significantly decreased relative to seed incubated in the absence of soil. Velvetleaf and giant foxtail germination was significantly reduced by 0.1-g soil aggregates. Rice (Oryza sativa L.) had 68% emergence from 1.0-g, fully moist soil aggregates, whereas larger seeded corn and soybean had only 20 and 10% emergence, respectively. Germination inhibition of giant foxtail seed by fully moist soil was partially reversed by incubating seed-containing aggregates in an atmosphere of 75% oxygen.