For gardeners, this week is like the start of the Indy 500, with the announcer saying, “Gentlemen, start your engines!” (Wait, do they still say that now that Danica Patrick is racing?), and the subsequent revving that signals the beginning of a long and exciting race. Friday is the first day of spring, and that means it’s time to plant the peas…
Typically, around these parts, they say St. Patrick’s Day is the day to plant. But I have to work all week, so planting is going to have to wait until this weekend. Fortunately, the weather looks good and I’m ready to go.
If you want to plant your own peas this year, here is what you need:
Pea seeds (organic, I hope). You can get them at the local nursery or hardware store. Sometimes even at the supermarket. And if not those places, go online to order from Peaceful Valley Farm Supply or Seed Savers Exchange.
Soil that is healthy and ready to grow stuff in. If you don’t have that already, make a raised garden bed by piling a foot of good topsoil and compost right on top of a grassy spot in your yard; shore up the soil mix with some rocks or wood, or just make a mound.
Some sort of trellis for the peas to climb. You won’t need that for a couple of weeks, so if you don’t have one don’t let that stop you from planting the peas. Chicken wire, string, or even sticks stuck into the ground can serve as trellises.
So, just stick the peas in the soil, water them (or, depending on your location, let the rain take care of that), and wait. When the plants start peeping up, give them a trellis to climb, and sit there with a gun for the next several weeks to keep the rabbits and deer away until the peas are ready to pick. Just kidding about the gun…but keeping those critters away is a whole other blog post.
Thanks for the reminder! I ran outside after reading this and planted my peas. It is now snowing, but they should be ok with a piece of plexi on top of the pot!
Thankfully, the snow has passed and the sun is out!
Hi Maria – Wonderful blog! I’d like to link to your column on planting peas from our WDIY 88.1 FM food blog I do called Savorings. I’m featuring cooking with peas this week and would like to mention your blog on my segment that will be broadcast Monday, the 30th, during Lehigh Valley Arts Salon. Here’s my blog – I’m working on the “pea” section today/tomorrow. THANKS, Sharon McCarthy http://www.savorings.blogspot.com.