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    Posted on May 30th, 2011 Pam No comments

    I love peas, they are about my favorite vegetable. I plant lots of peas, most for eating right out of the garden, and some to freeze. Little Marvel Peas and Green Arrow Peas are some of my favorites. I plant them in a wide row. About 12″ to 18″ wide, this year I am trying a new method. I planted two 12″ rows on each side of a ‘net wire’ fence. I’ll keep you posted on how this works.

    Peas can be hard to come up through a hard crust. So here is a solution, my Mother told me about ten years ago. At that time I told her I couldn’t get my peas to come up, some years they were fine and some years they wouldn’t come up. So this is what she said: Dig a furrow for the peas, (I dig one anywhere from 4″ to 18″ wide), then flood the row with water. After the water sinks, plant a generous amount of peas. (We used to say ‘plant them thick’). Then cover the peas with at least 2″ of dirt that is on one side of the row. (Here comes the biggest hint !!) Do not water or sprinkle peas after you have planted them. No matter what !!!! As my Mother told me “Do not water them, you’ll want to. But don’t water them and they will come up on their own.” Even if you check them a week or ten days later and they seem to be lying in dry dirt – they have soaked up enough moisture from the water in the furrow for them to sprout. Give them a few more days and they will begin to come up — honest.

    You can also soak them first, but I never have soaked my peas. Peas can rot easily if they have too much moisture. If you soak them first, then water the furrow, then it rains you will have a good chance to have rotting peas. I recommend watering the row first and waiting.

    Do not water your peas during the heat of the day, or late evening. If you water peas during a hot day, the will scald and die. They are very sensitive to water when they are hot. If you water them during the evening they will have a greater chance of having fungus or mold problems. I water my peas during the morning, that way they are cool and will have all day for the leaves to dry off.

    Did you know that peas have nodules full of nitrogen on their roots? The plant produces nodules on the roots and much of their energy is used to build these nodules. So they have their own built in fertilizer. When the pods are filling, the plant reduces the building and filling of nodules and spends its energy filling pods. Because the peas have built in nitrogen doesn’t mean they do not need fertilizer, they can become low in nitrogen. If the colors of your peas are yellow that may mean, they need a fertilizer supplement.

    You can plant them thick and replant a second crop in the same place. But watch for nitrogen diffencency. I have replanted a second crop in the same place around July 24th or August 1st for a few years now, and have had good results.

    Something else I have learned about peas, they will grow best if using saved seed from the year before. I saved seeds from Lincoln and Green Arrow peas I planted two years ago. Then planted those seeds last year, they came up better and I had a great crop. Make sure to save seeds from Heirloom plants, they sure worked for me.

    I have planted a 40 feet row of peas this year from seeds I saved last year. They are about 3″ tall and look terrific. It looks like I get about 95% germination, much better than seeds from the store. It seems they are used to the weather here in COLD IDAHO.

    Updated from my blog, gardenyourlife, Sunday, June 14, 2009

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