Pea party? Lessons from my garden

Early this spring – in March – I discovered two pea plants in the garden. After racking my brain I remembered I’d chucked a couple of peas into the garden after leaving them too long so they’d turned into dry peas of their own accord.

Lesson one: peas are easy to dry.

Do absolutely nothing for best results. If, on the other hand, you mean to eat the peas, don’t wait when the pods start to turn yellow or the plants start to get dry. It’s the end of their season. Harvest and enjoy, or wait and collect seeds (dried peas) for next year.

A while later, I found only one pea plant among all the other plants (including narcissae, unplanned grass, and loads of ‘weeds’). It had happily used the other plants as support – peas will knot thin strands around anything they find and grow on. The other plant had probably been eaten by slugs hiding in the dense undergrowth. The remaining plant gave us several pods of deliciously sweet and tender peas.

Lesson two: peas from your own garden taste at least ten times better than the stuff that comes in tins.

Last year I left some peas half-covered in a muddy pot for days before getting round to planting them. I found many of the peas had developed roots by then. So this year I decided to put a handful of peas from a bag that had been open for two years in a bowl. First, I let them soak for a night. The next day I did this:

peas in a bowl

Peas nice and snug in a bowl next to the kitchen sink

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