WE ARE FARMERS GERMINATING FOR FARMERS

ABOUT IMPERIAL SEEDLINGS

Our Story

We built this company to solve a problem we had on our own farm. When we launched our 400-acre hemp farm, the largest problem we had was finding a quality nursery  that understood hemp that could also germinate hardened-off transplants and ship them to us for a reasonable, commercial-farming price. $3.00 per plant simply would not work for us. We couldn’t find one, so we ended up partnering with a well-established transplant nursery who knew starts very well but did not know hemp. When we married what we knew about hemp with their decades of transplant germination experience, the results were amazing and gave us the idea to help solve this problem for farmers everywhere.  

Having produced millions of hemp seedlings as a team and after nailing down our methodology, we launched Imperial Seedlings to provide farmers across the U.S. with hardy hemp starts and ship them nationwide. Our management team includes generational and experienced hemp farmers, a 30+ year veteran team in seedling germination, and experienced operational executives. As a team we provide services from your perspective because we’ve been in your shoes.

Our nursery in the Imperial Valley of California has the perfect climate to produce top-quality hemp starts and has seen billions of starts germinated there in it’s 20-year existence. We have also pioneered development of proprietary inputs specific to hemp to make each start as hardy and viable as ever. ​ 

We will germinate more than 40 million starts this season and we are excited to get to work for our customers in being a part of their success!

OUR TEAM

EXPERIENCE IN HEMP FARMING + EXPERIENCE IN BUSINESS

COLTE KOEN

PRESIDENT

Colte has a background steeped in the business-end of hemp and farmed 400 acres of hemp in 2019. His solid foundation of operating service-based businesses, combined with his hemp farming experience, means he understands what it takes to farm successfully from a business perspective.

He recognized the need for a large-scale, affordable germination service that could deliver direct: ultimately leading to the launch of the company. He has set the company’s goal to be a farmer’s go-to for getting the season started off right.

A Dallas native, he holds a B.A. in Business Administration from Texas A&M and an M.B.A. from Southern Methodist University. 

JEFFREY MCPHEE

VP, HORTICULTURE

A fourth-generation farmer, Jeffrey has been laser focused on the hemp industry for more than a decade. As a Crop Advisor for agronomic and horticultural aspects of hemp farming, his education has included in-depth studies on soil type and health, micro-climate selection, genetic selection and fertilizer and Integrated Pest Management systems as well as how to maximize scaled acreage performance. 

He has leveraged this to develop proprietary hemp formulations of inputs for every seedling we germinate and leads our horticulture program – including the vetting of our breeding network and cultivar advisement. 

A native of Yakima, WA, Jeffrey has more than 20 years of experience in farming inside the hemp family of plants.


RICK BERNARDI

VP, NURSERY OPERATIONS

Rick knows seedlings. As a seasoned veteran of seedling transplant germination, he has more than 30 years in the industry. Over that time, he has been responsible for the seeding and germinating of over 200M seedling transplants annually for large-scale produce companies, including Dole. 

When it comes to your seedlings, he oversees each-and-every order with our experienced crew at our 200K square foot nursery in Southern California – a facility Rick has operated for more than two decades. 

A lifelong Southern Californian, Rick holds a B.S. in Crop Science from Cal Poly San Luis Obispo. 

KIM VANCE

VP, MARKETING

Kim builds partnerships helping us create on-going value for our farming customers. A seasoned marketing professional, she has more than two decades of experience building brands for Fortune 500 companies including Dr. Pepper and 7-Eleven. 

In 2016, she launched a manufacturing company  disrupting the plumbing industry by reintroducing colorful, designer sinks across the U.S. and Europe. As a lifelong entrepreneur, she understands the mindset of what it takes to build something with your blood, sweat and tears in an emerging industry like hemp farming.  

She holds a B.B.A in Marketing from Baylor University and an M.B.A. from the University of Texas—Dallas.