This low-maintenance plant is a summer favorite and a staple in a number of soup and stew recipes. And fun fact: the green pea is one of the oldest cultivated vegetables in the world!
How To Plant Peas
Start: Peas can be direct sown in early spring 4-6 weeks before the last frost (as soon as the soil is workable) for a first crop and late summer for a fall crop. Sow 2” apart in double rows spaced 6” apart with 24” between double rows. Cover with 1” of fine soil. Thin to stand 4-6” apart when seedlings are 1-2” high.
Water: Peas do not do well in overly wet conditions. Keep soil evenly moist but not saturated. Peas require about 1” of rain per week.
Soil: Peas prefer fertile well-drained soil but will tolerate most soils except heavy clay. Average soil with some compost worked into it will suit them wonderfully. pH 5.8-7.0
Light: Full sun.
Fertilize: Peas are legumes are able to capture nitrogen from the air through their leaves. They do not require fertilizing, but if a fertilizer is used, choose one with little or no nitrogen.
Harvest: Harvest peas when the pods look full and are still bright, shiny green. If the peas have started bulging the pod and the pod is dull green, they are past prime.
Notes: Pea seeds can be inoculated with a beneficial bacteria at the time of planting to help them capture more nitrogen from the air.