Friday, 1 July 2016

Peas - a better result

My previous efforts with growing peas have not met with great success, producing poor yields and often succumbing to mildew and/or pea-moth maggots before reaching full maturity. This year things have gone a lot better.

Some of the "Early Onward" peas are impressively big - much bigger than I had expected.

In case you missed this, I have plants of three different varieties on the go - "Early Onward", "Douce Provence" and "Desiree". It is the latter that has the purple pods.

I did sow some of another variety called "Terrain", but very few of them germinated, and most of those that did were very weak, so I'm not counting them in my reckoning.

So far I have only harvested some of the "Early Onward", (a little over 400g in total) but there are lots more to come.

The purple-coloured pods of "Desiree" are much more easily identified amongst the green foliage, which makes it look as if they are producing a bigger crop, but this may of course be an illusion.

So what is it that has made the difference? In my opinion it is most probably a combination of things. For a start, weather conditions are different every year, and this year we have had a lot of mild, dull and wet weather - which peas seem to like. Furthermore, the peas are growing in a different location, the other side of my (admittedly small) garden, and may be benefitting from a slightly different micro-climate, perhaps with better ventilation. The raised bed in which the peas are growing is also one that has never hosted peas before, and has had extensive preparation, including the addition of plentiful home-made compost. Finally, it has also had added to it some of that Seer Rockdust stuff which is alleged to be beneficial in the prevention of mildew. The latter claim is not one for which I can offer any real evidence, except to say that this year my peas have not contracted mildew (so far...).

Quality-wise, I have no complaints. Fresh peas eaten within hours / minutes of picking are delicious by any measure!

Peas mixed in with Broad Beans.

This success has given me renewed enthusiasm for growing peas. I think they will almost certainly be back on the Grow-List for next year.


  1. Love the look of the purple pods on green leaf. Glad this year is a success as well, and isn't it true, every year is different so we can rejoice in that!! We are on track together as our peas in our garden are just coming along as well as the broad beans from the dwarf plants. Yumm.

  2. Those are some terrific looking peas. Congratulation on your success with them this year and I hope next year will be as good. Peas will be back on my grow list also, they are such a treat when they are fresh from the garden, well worth the extra effort to shell them.

  3. Ours aren't even flowering yet.

  4. I'm so glad the peas have worked out for you! We have been relishing snow peas and now sugar snaps with the shelling peas just days away from that first harvest.

  5. We tried Oskar peas this year and they have been great.

  6. I haven't sown any peas yet but was thinking of putting some in this week and seeing if they'll grow in time. I love the look of the purple pods and will note that for next year. This year I'll try using up the sugar snap peas that I've got as I read that these can be sown in July. Incidentally, I've never had a problem with mildew on peas but the veg patch site is quite breezy as wind is funnelled between blocks of flats! (I do, however, get mildew on courgettes, eventually.)

  7. A wonderful harvest , those purple pods look so lovely too! Sarah x

  8. Peas seem to be doing well everywhere.Had very good germination up here on the Lancs/Cumbria border.I've just started picking Oregon sugar snaps which have overtaken the Hurst Green Shaft pod variety.
    I grew some purple mangetout last year which flattered to deceive, tough and with an unremarkable flavour. Sometimes the tradition green versions of veg win out over the fancier varieties?

  9. The problem with growing your own peas is that they're so delicious that you will never ever buy fresh peas from the supermarket ever again!


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