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Right now I'm reading a book called Heirloom Vegetable Gardening by William Weaver (1997), and it offers a tip regarding seed germination. The tip comes from The Farmer's Own Book (by H.L. Barnum) from way back in 1836:

Seed should be carried in the pocket for a week or two before planting.

The way I see it, body moisture and heat will help catalyze the germination process. For similar reasons, many people suggest soaking seeds in water overnight before planting. Similarly, in a great book I read last week (Square Foot Gardening by Mel Bartholomew), the author warns readers to never put seed packets in their pocket, at the risk of unwanted germination. So in his own way, Bartholomew backed up what was said back in 1836.

Offered by Mike.