7 Secrets of growing peas in your garden or in a pot
The pea is an herbaceous annual plant that we cultivate for its edible seeds. The fruit of the pea is an oblong green pod that contains the seeds. Peas are eaten raw, as well as cooked in the casserole in excellent recipes. It is also very nutritious. It has a high nutritional value as it is an excellent source of protein.
Peas belong to the legume plants, ie the plants that bind nitrogen from the atmosphere and enrich the soil. That is why it is also cultivated for green fertilization to improve the soil of our garden. Peas can also be grown in pots, although planting in a garden is much more efficient.
What pea varieties do we choose for cultivation?
There are dwarf pea varieties that reach a height of 40-50 cm, semi-climbing varieties that reach a height of 1 meter, and climbing varieties that definitely need support and can exceed 2 meters in height.
In some pea varieties, the pods are harvested green and eaten directly, even raw, they do not need any cleaning as they have a tender texture and sweet taste. In contrast, in pea varieties grown for dried seeds, the pods are harvested when they mature and take on a brown color on the plant.
What conditions does a pea need to thrive?
Peas prefer fertile soils, enriched with nutrients that have good drainage. The cultivation of peas needs a lot of sunshine, the exposure to the sun helps in bigger and better production.
Pea is a plant that loves cool climates and is usually grown in autumn-winter or in spring. However, the frost greatly affects the growth of peas, so we control the best time to plant it depending on the climate of our area.
To plant peas in a pot, we use a pot with a diameter and height of at least 20 cm. We supply general-purpose topsoil that has perlite for moisture retention and for better ventilation. Choose a sunny place for the pot on the balcony and avoid the northern exposure to avoid possible frost
How and when is pea planted and what preparation do we need?
To have better results in the cultivation of peas, we incorporate manure or compost in the soil to have more organic matter and available nutrients in the soil.
The suitable planting season for peas is in autumn, October, and November, as well as late winter to mid-spring, February to April. If we sow the peas, we plant the seeds at a depth of 5 cm, at planting distances of 25-30 cm between the plants on the line and 50-60 cm between the planting lines.
Note that for the support of climbing varieties, we must make special constructions with reeds or procure a special plant climbing net from agricultural stores.
When we have limited space or want variety in our vegetables, we prefer to co-cultivate with other vegetables. Carrots, beans, cucumbers, and potatoes are some of the plants that can be grown together with peas.
What watering and fertilizing needs does the pea have?
The pea needs relatively regular watering depending on the prevailing conditions and rainfall. For watering the pea crop, we check when the soil becomes relatively dry. We prefer to water the peas early in the morning, so that the soil dries before nightfall, as excessive moisture during the night can cause diseases and root rot.
Peas need a little fertilization with a complete organic fertilizer at the beginning and in the middle of the crop. Avoid excessive fertilization which can cause excessive growth of plant shoots at the expense of fruit production.
What diseases and which insects affect the cultivation of peas?
Peas are affected by many fungal diseases such as rust, mildew, downy mildew, and root rot. Avoid excessive moisture in the root and spray the pea foliage with a solution of wet copper and sulfur or dust with thiocopper.
The cultivation of peas is also affected by the insects of the meligra, the liriomiza, the caterpillar of the peas as well as by the tetranych. For preventive treatment, we spray with potassium soap salts and natural pyrethrin.
When is the pea ready for harvest?
Peas are harvested about 2-4 months after planting depending on the variety and planting season. The autumn sowing of peas takes 3.5-4 months to be harvested in contrast to the spring sowing which is harvested in 2-2.5 months.
Harvest the peas gradually, when the pods have reached a sufficient size and the spores inside are fully developed. For the pea varieties where the pod is eaten fresh, we harvest when the pod is tender and the seeds have not formed inside.
And a secret for the pea
Low soil temperature and excessive humidity (which causes seed rot) are two problems that we are called to consider when sowing peas, as they may not allow the seed to germinate.
Images via: Pinterest