When I first learned to garden, I thought you put everything in the ground once the snow melted and everything would grow through the summer and you’d have a bountiful harvest. I learned that wasn’t true when a spring frost hit and I lost a bunch of plants . Thanks to some more experienced friends and relatives (and books and blogs) I also learned that certain plants grow best at certain times of the year. Tomatoes prefer the summer weather; peas like the spring. This explains why the peas I planted in May produced a poor harvest in coastal New England: I planted them when it was too warm. Eventually I started planted my peas sometime after St. Patrick’s Day (provided the snow was melted and the ground wasn’t frozen) and they grew beautifully.
Those who have gardened know what I’m about to tell you, but for a newbie it was a revelation: NOTHING tastes as good as just-picked produce. The first time I harvested some peas, I immediately steamed them, added butter and a little salt, and oh. Oh my. I was in love. I had always liked peas, but this was different. The flavor! The texture! They were Just.So.Good. That sealed the gardening deal for me. For food that tasted this good, I would do the work.
I tried a variety of supports for my pea plants and I discovered a few things:
- They grew nicely on the perimeter fence, but the deer had access to anything on the backside of the fence and clearing the tendrils off at the end of the season was a bit of a pain.
- The mesh netting is cost effective, but you have to pull it really taut and add plenty of support or the weight of the plants will bring it down.
- A sturdy structure placed at a slight angle gives good support and makes harvesting a little easier.
- Peas freeze well, but you should eat as many as you can while they’re fresh. Yum yum YUM!
We have pea plants ready to ship when you’re ready to plant!
Article Contributed by our dear friend Anne DeRuiter