It’s official summer must be here, mainly because I put my peas out into their new home.
I started them off in my polytunnel which you can see the corner of in my picture. I never put them into soil. We have quite a few cheeky mice on our plot and they dig them up. They do say you can soak your peas in paraffin for 24 hours before sowing directly into the ground, but it doesn’t sit well with me. The idea of dousing in paraffin sounds a bit too chemically to me, but hey it might be something you could do.
Firstly of all you must NEVER plant your peas in the same place each year – rotate them around your plot, other wise you run the risk of building up pests and other nasties where they grow. Also it’s good to follow rotation as your peas help fix nitrogen into the soil. They work with the bacteria in the soil leaving the nitrogen in their root nodules and the surrounding soil. So the next crop will benefit from that greatly, I usually dig the roots into the soil and leave them to rot down over winter.
The whole plot is made up of raised beds which helps with weeding and drainage but does mean in hot summers they dry out fast. I will be honest though I cannot remember the last hot summer we had, so going out with the watering can isn’t a problem.
So back to the perfect pea bed. I make my own compost. I emptied about two wheel barrows full over the bed and mixed it into the existing soil, my soil is very heavy clay soil so it was hard work. But I love the exercise and I know that next year it will be easier to dig over. If your soil is heavy too add lots of home made compost and manure each year it will get easier.
Then you need to create a path so you can get to you peas. Mine are in a bed so I threw down a few bricks and flags down the middle. My five year old daughter will, I just know, spend most of the summer hidden amongst those peas stuffing her face with them.
Next job is to make something for your peas to climb up, then carefully transplant your peas around the canes and your off!
As they get bigger I give them a hand with some garden string and they will fill those canes in no time.
I have learnt to keep them away from my raspberry patch. Peas can have a problem with pea moth. Which I think hide out in the raspberry patch and swoop down at night. So I will never plant near to them again. That season many of my peas had little green worms in the pods, which was disappointing and freaked out my young daughter!
So there you have it a pea bed, healthy peas which taste super super sweet, eat them as soon as you can, cheep and will be the best peas you taste so much sweeter than ones bought at the supermarket, I promise!
Happy Gardening x