By: Kathee Mierzejewski
Have you ever thought about how to grow snow peas (Pisum sativum var. saccharatum)? Snow peas are cool season vegetables that are quite frost hardy. Growing snow peas requires no more work than growing other varieties of peas.
How to Grow Snow Peas
Before planting snow peas, be sure temperatures are at least 45 F. (7 C.) and that all chance of frost for your area has passed. Although snow peas can survive frost, it’s better if it can be avoided. Your soil should be ready for planting snow peas. Make sure it is dry enough; if the soil is sticking to your rake, it’s too wet to plant. Wait until after the rains if you live in an area with heavy spring rains.
Planting snow peas is done by placing the seeds 1 to 1-1/2 inches (2.5 to 3.5 cm.) deep and 1 inch (2.5 cm.) apart, with 18 to 24 inches (46 to 61 cm.) between rows.
Depending on your climate, it may be beneficial to mulch around your growing snow peas to keep the soil cool during the hot weather of summer. This can also help prevent the soil from getting too soggy during times of hard rains. Avoid planting in direct sunlight; growing snow peas don’t like all day direct sunshine.
Care of Snow Pea Plants
When cultivating around your growing snow peas, hoe shallowly so you don’t disturb the root structure. Fertilize the soil immediately after planting snow peas, then, after picking the first crop, fertilize again.
When to Harvest Snow Peas
Care of snow pea plants simply requires waiting and watching them grow. You can pick them when they are ready to be picked — before the pod starts to swell. Harvest your pea crop every one to three days for fresh snow peas for the table. Taste them off the vine to determine their sweetness.
As you can see, the care of snow pea plants is simple, and you can harvest a great crop less than two months after planting snow peas in your garden. They are versatile used in salads and stir fries, or mixed with other vegetables for a medley.
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