How to Grow and Care for Peas (Complete Guide)
Pea plants (Pisum sativum) are planted as a cool-season annual crop for their tasty seeds. Unfortunately, many people are confused about how to grow peas and care for them. We bring you the complete guide to help you understand the process better.
How to Grow Peas?
Extended exposure to temperatures below freezing may damage the initial plantings, though these have some frost tolerance.
If you live in a cold region, you might want to try utilizing a cold frame to protect your plants. Many locations can also support planting in the late summer or fall, six to eight weeks before your anticipated first fall frost date.
How to Select a Location to Grow Peas?
Select a place where the condition of the soil is good, the drainage is working, and it has exposure to sunlight.
Avoid planting in a garden that has previously grown peas. Since pea-targeting pests and illnesses can persist in the soil, a multi-year crop rotation is recommended.
You can also decide to go for container growth. Consider raised garden beds if your soil doesn’t drain well or if you experience heavy spring rains that leave your soil soggy.
Remember to plant seeds at least two inches apart and at a considerable depth of one inch. The minimum distance between rows is 7 inches. If your peas are a vining kind, include poles or pea fencing when you plant them.
What Are The Different Types Of Peas?
Here are the Different Varieties Of Peas mentioned:
There are mainly three types of peas: snow, English, and snap. English peas, commonly called shelling or garden peas, feature pleasant, plump pea seeds but inedible pods.
Snow peas may be eaten whole, generally cooked, and have delicate, thin shells and undeveloped seeds. Snap peas, commonly called sugar peas, are eaten whole, typically uncooked, and feature crisp shells and juicy, sweet seeds.
Garden peas are often only planted for their pods or seeds. They also have delicious leaves, tendrils, and blossoms. However, don’t confuse sweet peas with garden peas! The sweet peas produced for their divinely fragrant blossoms are poisonous!
If necessary, tie the peas or reroute the tendrils to support the plant, as it’s simple for the wind to blow over huge vine branches, which will regrettably shatter and die.
You could choose to attach branches to your trellis if you live in a windy place. Because peas have thin roots, avoid planting them close to the ground.
Can You Save the Seeds From Peas?
Yes, it is possible to save the seeds from peas. In contrast to hybrids, open-pollinated variants make it simple to store seeds.
Any peas should be allowed to mature completely on the vines before being harvested. So when the pods are dried and brown, the seeds are rattling within.
Although I have observed enormous native peas visiting the blossoms, peas are self-pollinating. Therefore, peas seldom cross, although it is still conceivable. If you want pure seeds, a distance of 50 feet is advised.
How To Deal With Pests?
Snails, slugs, and birds adore the sensitive tips of peas. Slugs typically don’t cause much damage to plants until they reach a height of approximately a foot, but birds can still be a problem.
Try covering the vines with bird netting or floating row cover, but generally, the plants take care of things fairly fine.
How to Harvest Peas?
Peas should be harvested as soon as they are large enough to be harvested; check daily. Morning harvesting will result in the crispiest peas.
Make careful to inspect your vines frequently. At one stage, peas will fully mature, and the plant will cease producing.
This is when it is possible to eat these. Hold the vine softly with one hand while pulling the pods off with the other.
How to Store Fresh Peas to Main Its Freshness?
Peas should be consumed the same day they are collected since they begin to convert their sugar to starch as soon as possible.
Eat within two days and, if necessary, keep in a bag in the refrigerator’s produce drawer.
Pea shoots should be wrapped in a moist cloth, put in a bag, and kept in the refrigerator for a week.
How To Properly Consume Peas?
Any portion of the vine, especially the new leaves from thinning plants, can be consumed. Alternatively, once the plant has grown to a height of 12″, cut off the tip of each vine, stopping just above the lowest leaf.
Salads love the little, 2-4″ long stalks. Longer ones, around 4 to 6 inches long, taste fantastic fried in stir-fries or incorporated into soups.
Always remember to have patience with plants. Keep track of light, soil, and water and ensure the nutrients are intact in the soil and have a higher pH level.
Check the right amount of humidity and ensure that a favorable temperature is maintained throughout.
Freezing and canning are great ways of preserving peas. First, allow the pods to dry or hang them on the plant in a cool, dry area.
This way, you can easily save seeds from your plants for the next year. Then, remove the pods to save the seeds once they have fully dried out.