Answer: When a seed germinates, it's like chick hatching from an egg. The sprout pushes open both sides of the seed coat, sends a root into the soil and a stem toward the light. The seed coat sometimes gets stuck on the unfurling leaves, but since it's only a shell, it won't hurt the leaf. Those first leaves are called seed leaves (cotyledons). They shrivel up and fall off after the plant develops "true" leaves. Don't worry about the seed coat, it will fall off on its own. As you've discovered, you can damage the leaves by trying to remove it.
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