We changed the technique a little bit, instead of putting seeds direct into little pots, we wrapped them in damp kitchen tissue paper. Once roots appeared, they were transferred into poly bags and pots. Germination is almost 100%. It would be safe to point to two factors; the seeds are new and home grown, and the cool weather. Wrapping them with damp kitchen tissue paper is just a technique to give water, an essential stimulating element for germination. But it does look very clinical.... clean.
Lady's fingers /okra / bendi seedlings
Okra seedling with seed coat still attached.