Is this the next big thing in Vegetable gardening?
Mr Fothergills launched ‘Optigrow’ seeds at GLEE 2017 – this range of 20 veg varieties have all been ‘primed’ ready to germinate quicker than regular seeds. I can see this might be helpful if it gives veggies a head start over the weed seeds that certainly abound in my garden. Carrots and Parsnips can often be a week or so behind the weed germination and this could help save a lot of ‘lost’ carrot crops. Judging by the demo stand of Optigrow seeds at GLEE it looked as though the premium you pay for primed seeds is quite small, maybe there are fewer seeds in the packets but given that the seeds are best sown once opened there should be ample in each packet for most gardeners.
Importantly the ‘priming’ process does not involve chemicals, just water, heat and air to initiate the first stages of germination then the seeds are re-dried maintaining that part germinated state and viable for two years.
Many of the Optigrow varieties are F1 and some of them less well known varieties but I would trust Mr Fothergills to have made a well considered choice. Just imagine having quick germinating Parsley, I look forward to that!
The representative on the GLEE stand was kind enough to give me a quick video interview about the product, it is unedited but worth watching especially if you love growing veggies.