The Modern Husbandman 4: 37-38 (1744)
William Ellis

How a Farmer got a good Crop of Wheat by sowing Wheat-seed, that had before sprouted or spired.

Where Wheat-seed has sprouted but a little, its Growth is hazardous; yet I am going to shew how such Seed succeeded to the Produce of a plentiful Crop. A certain Farmer, who lives about a Mile distant from me, bigotted to his own Opinion, soaked his Wheat-seed in only fair Water a Night and a Day; and, being hindered from sowing it, did not lime it, but spread it thinly on a Floor. Now it happened, that his Wheat-seed sprouted at three Days End, so that the Farmer's Son advised him to give it the Hogs; but, notwithstanding the Son's Advice, his Father sowed it, and at Harvest had a good Crop in Return; which leads me to observe, that his soaking the Seed, in fair Water, was to cause the underline Corns, and smutty and Pepper-Wheat Kernels, to swim at Top, as well as the Seeds of Weeds for their being taken off; and as this Seed was not mow-burned, and only just spired, it grew well in a moist Season; but, had he limed the Kernels as soon as liquored, it is supposed the Heat of the Lime must have forced the Seed to spire with the greater Vigour, contrary to another better Way of salting and liming, which gives such a thick plaistered hard Coat to Wheat-Kernels, as rather prevents than forwards the sprouting Part of soaked Seed. But that such soaked Wheat may grow into a good Crop, though first sprouted, is not to be wondered at, if it be considered, that Sprouting of Seeds is done on Purpose by several Gardeners, For causing them to grow quick, and take the Ground the surer; a Method frequently practised upon Carrot-seed, in order to avoid the Waiting and Hazard of its tedious Growth.