Here are a few tips for growing peas in NZ in GreenSmart Self Watering Container Garden Supermarket peas are a vastly inferior vegetable to your own freshly picked home grown peas because from the moment peas are harvested they start turning starchy. Also the longer-keeping varieties that are suitable for retailing have less flavour than your home-grown varieties. The best time for planting peas in most of NZ is April to September. So now is a good time to prepare a plastic container garden of self watering GreenSmart Self Watering Container Garden for a sweet treat of peas.
Give Peas a Chance!!
The ideal soil temperature is 8 to 24 deg C with a pH of 6.5. Peas will thrive in full sun to partial shade. Start by soaking the pea seeds overnight then discard any that are damaged or undersized. Plant 30 to 36 seeds in a large GreenSmart Self Watering Container Garden. Cover the seeds with about 3 cm of soil and cover the pot with the elasticized plastic cover to create a moist little hot house. The seedlings will emerge after 7-12 days. Plant the seeds deeper if the weather is still very warm. Remove the cover when the seedlings are 1-2 cm high. Pull out any weak plants. Peas will thrive in full sun to partial shade. Keep the plants warm but roots cool. They will draw up water via the self watering wicks. Peas are self pollinating.
You can expect to be eating your own peas 65 to 80 days after planting. Pick them while they are young and sweet. They taste best if eaten immediately after picking.
At planting with well rotted manure or Yates Dynamic Lifter. Add liquid fertiliser into the water sight glass every 3 weeks when the plants start flowering. Peas (being legumes) fix nitrogen on nodules on the roots so be sure to utilise those nodules for a later crop that needs extra nitrogen.
Peas grown in containers need support. All varieties including dwarf varieties are natural climbers so need support. Eg stakes driven into the ground around the GreenSmart Self Watering Container Garden. Tie lightweight plastic netting between the stakes. Alternatively use a few lengths of twine looped under the pot and tied to overhead framing. Keep in mind that some varieties will climb 1.5 m or more and it is easiest to set up the support when you plant the seeds.
Be alert for slugs and snails when the plants are young. Water the plants via the water sight glass and ensure that they have good ventilation as water on the plants encourages powdery mildew on the leaves. A useful website for getting rid of aphids click here. Birds will sometimes pull out plants just as they are germinating. You can confuse the birds by inserting twigs around the edge of the pot and then stretching cotton around the twigs.
Suitable Self Watering Container Garden Companion Plants
Peas like the company of carrots, sunflowers, turnips and beans but don’t like being around onions and garlic.