The Sprout pencil is a pencil you can plant when you’ve finished using it. There are graphite and colouring versions. Pencils are available with a wide variety of seeds including flowers, fruits and herbs.
The barrel of the pencils are made of cedar from sustainable forests: a new tree is planted each time one is chopped down. It’s unfinished with the basic information about the pencil etched along the side. The seeds are in a water-soluble capsule on the end.
As pencils, they are reasonable but nothing special. The graphite is a little gritty and a slightly pale HB. The line from the coloured pencils is quite pale. Obviously there’s no eraser because that’s where the seeds are. You have to be quite careful not to get this part wet. The cedar barrels sharpen nicely.
I have completely failed to grow anything from these pencils but please don’t read too much into this. As far as can recall, I’ve never managed to grow anything from seed. The fact that life does in fact exist on Earth suggests that it’s possible but it seems to be beyond me. An experiment in self sufficiency would not end well if I was in charge of the garden. There’s a video here that shows some Sprout pencils growing and I have no reason to doubt its authenticity.
The Sprout pencil is a really lovely idea. It’s obviously no greener or sustainable that buying a similarly green pencil and a packet of seeds but as a way of encouraging people to plant some seeds it’s wonderful. I can see this being great with children. It’s just really fun to plant your pencil.
Thank you to Sprout for sending me these pencils to try. I have six left to give away to anyone in the UK who’d like to try one. Three are graphite and three are colour and it’ll be a lucky dip as to who gets what. If you’d like me to send you one (and you live in the UK – shipping elsewhere would cost more than the pencil’s worth) then please let me know in the comments. The first six people from the UK to leave a comment can have one.