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Growing Sweet Pea / Garden Pea in Pots

Jul 25, 2013
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Beans and peas are relatively easy to grow, making them a good choice for a first-time gardener or a new garden plot. These legumes also have a symbiotic relationship with nitrogen-fixing bacteria, meaning they actually improve the nutrition of the soil they’re in.Also known as garden peas, shelling peas, snap peas, sugar peas, sugar snap peas, snow peas, Chinese peas, edible-podded peas,Pisum sativum .Like sweet corn, peas are at their tastiest immediately after harvest. Whether you choose shell or edible-pod peas, they grow best during spring and early summer when temperatures are between 60 F to 75 F.

 Propagation

Peas are propagated by seeds. Seeds are peas themselves. Use fresh pods for obtaining seeds. In case of dried seeds, test them first. Soak some seeds in water then put them in damp paper towel. After 2-3 days open it up, if there is sprouts poking out of peas then it’s good sign that they are healthy. You can go ahead with those seeds. Sow  in spring, about one month before your last frost date. Sow seeds on soil beds ½ inch deep in the ground and minimum 18 inches apart in a row. Distance between two seeds is important here otherwise tendrils of sweet pea will lock with each other hindering the growth.

 Soil

You need about 6 inches of loose, rich soil. Or buy some compost and top soil ,mix it up with dirt you dug up in 50-50 ratio. Plants association with Nitrogen fixing bacteria like rhizobium increases soil fertility over the time.

 Sun / Temperature

6 hrs of sun light is required for good growth. For germination , Optimum temperature is around 75 F.

 Watering

Water them regularly. Or better is whenever you see the soil dry, water them. but remember that too much water is as harmful as too little. . Heavy watering during flowering, which can interfere with pollination.

To test the soil, push your finger into the ground. If it gets it wet/muddy, you’re using too much water; it should be damp to dry.

 Fertilizer

Fertilize at planting and then every three weeks with a mixed seaweed and fish emulsion liquid fertilizer. Stop when they start flowering.Do not use high-nitrogen fertilizers. Too much nitrogen will result in lush foliage but poor flowering and fruiting.

Trellising

Most peas and beans are twining plants. You will therefore need something for them to twine on: a fence, a net strung between two poles, individual poles for each plant,  It’s best to have a support ready to “plant” while you plant the seeds. The supports can also help mark your seed locations. Or  Erect trellis for tall-growing, vining types at planting using chicken wire, brush or other suitable trellis material. If trellising, increase row spacing to 4 to 6 feet.

Harvesting

When green peas are ripe, harvest them daily, preferably in the morning. For best flavor and yields, allow peas to change from flat to plump before picking them. Gather sweet green shell peas when the pods begin to show a waxy sheen, but before their color fades. Immediately refrigerate picked peas to stop the conversion of sugar to starches and maintain the peas’ crisp texture. Promptly blanch and freeze your extra peas. It is recommended to use peas as soon as they are harvested.

  Read Also : How to grow Bitter Gourd (Karela) at home.

 

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