Trying new things – sugar snap peas!

We know we like to eat sugar snap peas, but we’ve never grown sugar snap peas before. So this is a new one for us for 2020.

We’re trying a variety called Cascadia, so we’ll see how we get on. We first filled some cell trays with multipurpose compost. We tend to grow peas and beans in cell trays rather than planting them straight out in the garden, as we find that lots of things like to have a nibble before they get a chance to grow otherwise – mice, birds and all sorts of creepy crawlies!

As you may have gathered from previous posts, we’re not about having a part row of something where a full row should be! So to give our plants the best chance, we sow in cell trays until they’re ready to be planted out so they’ve had a good head start against the above garden pests!

When filling our seed trays, we always fill the cells roughly first (see left hand side photo), then gently firm the compost down with a couple of fingers (see right hand side photo) and then fill with compost again to the top. The idea is to eliminate any air pockets in the compost, as our seedlings won’t thank us if their root runs into one of these, as it can’t access any water/nutrients!

Once filled, we placed two pea seeds in each cell. We thought it was worth sharing a photo of what pea seeds look like – and funnily enough, they look just like peas themselves, just a little bit shrivelled! It’s interesting though, as lots of other seeds don’t look anything like what they produce, e.g. carrots, beetroot, lettuces, etc. They look more like what you would imagine when you think of a seed! This is because the seeds of these vegetables come from a seed head which shoots from the vegetable amongst its foliage. It almost looks like a sort of flower on a longish stem, which blossoms and then produces seed heads which the seeds are harvested from once dry.  Whereas the seeds from peas, are the peas themselves, just dried out in their pods and then harvested!

As we were sowing the peas, we pushed them gently into the compost so that they rested just below the surface, and then covered with a little sprinkle of compost to cover. Then we gave them a water to moisten the compost and last but not least, labelled them up so we didn’t get them confused with any other plants.

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Then they were covered with a couple of sheets of newspaper to keep the light out until they germinate.

 

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