Growing Split Peas With Care & Attention
November 21, 2023
Growing Split Peas
Split Peas are a member of the legume family, and have a mild, earthy flavor. They are revered for their high protein content and their ease of preparation - simply soak, then simmer in a pot of water until tender. Split Peas are commonly used in soups, stews, casseroles, and loaves, and their mild flavor mixes well with more robust flavors like garlic, onion, and herbs & spices.
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Cheatsheet: Growing Split Peas With Care & Attention
🌱 Choose the Right Soil
🏞️ Loamy soil with good drainage and pH 6-7 works best.
💧 Provide Adequate Water
💦 Keep soil moist, but not waterlogged, to ensure healthy growth.
☀️ Optimal Sun Exposure
🌞 Plant in a sunny spot to maximize yield and nourish the plants.
✂️ Pruning Tips
🔪 Regularly trim off yellow or dead leaves to promote better growth.
💪 Support Growing Plants
🌾 Stake or trellis plants to prevent bending and ensure proper support.
🌡️ Monitor Temperature
🌡️ Split peas flourish in cool temperatures between 60-70°F.
🌧️ Rain vs. Irrigation
💧 Consistent irrigation is preferable as heavy rain can lead to splitting.
🌼 Blooming & Pollination
🐝 Attract pollinators by planting flowers nearby to aid in successful pollination.
🍽️ Harvesting Time
✂️ Harvest when about 80% of pods are dry for maximum flavor and nutrition.
💡 Did You Know?
- With 26g of protein per cooked cup, split peas are a nutritious choice.
- Split peas are also rich in iron, fiber, and B-vitamins.
- They are a great low-cost option for self-sufficient home gardening.
Growing split peas is a rewarding experience for any gardener. These small, protein-packed legumes are not only delicious but also incredibly easy to grow. With a little bit of care and attention, you can enjoy a bountiful harvest of split peas right in your own backyard.
1. Choose a sunny spot
Split peas thrive in full sun, so choose a spot in your garden that receives at least six to eight hours of direct sunlight each day. If you don't have a sunny spot, consider using containers or raised beds that can be moved around to catch the sun's rays.
2. Prepare the soil
Before planting, it's important to prepare the soil. Split peas prefer well-draining soil with a pH between 6.0 and 7.0. You can improve the soil's drainage and fertility by adding organic matter, such as compost or well-rotted manure. Work the organic matter into the top 6 inches of soil to create a nutrient-rich environment for your split peas to grow in.
Sow split pea seeds directly into the prepared soil, spacing them about 2 inches apart and 1 inch deep. If you're planting in rows, space the rows about 18 inches apart to allow for easy access and airflow. Once planted, gently water the soil and keep it consistently moist but not soggy. Germination should occur within 7 to 10 days.
4. Support and Protect
As your split pea plants grow, they will need support to prevent them from toppling over. Consider using a trellis, stakes, or even a tomato cage to support the plants. This will help keep the plants upright and allow air circulation, which can prevent diseases. Additionally, keep an eye out for pests, such as aphids or snails, and take appropriate measures to protect your plants.
Harvesting split peas is a two-step process. First, you'll need to harvest the pods when they turn yellow and feel slightly dry. This usually occurs around 90 to 120 days after planting. Next, remove the peas from the pods and allow them to dry completely. Once they are dry, store them in an airtight container in a cool, dark place. Your homegrown split peas are now ready to be used in soups, stews, or other delicious recipes.
"Did you know that split peas are a great source of dietary fiber, protein, and various vitamins and minerals? According to research, consuming split peas regularly can help promote digestive health and may even aid in weight loss."
Growing split peas requires some care and attention, but the rewards are well worth it. As a gardener, I find it incredibly satisfying to cultivate my own food and know exactly where it comes from. Plus, the taste of freshly harvested split peas is unbeatable. So, why not give it a try this gardening season? Happy growing!
1. When is the best time to plant split peas?
The best time to plant split peas is in early spring when the soil has warmed up.
2. Do split peas require a lot of space to grow?
No, split peas do not require a lot of space. They can be grown in small gardens or containers.
3. How often should split peas be watered?
Split peas should be watered regularly, keeping the soil evenly moist.
4. Can split peas tolerate frost?
Yes, split peas can tolerate mild frost. However, it is best to protect them during colder spells.
5. Do split peas require support while growing?
Yes, split peas need support such as trellises or stakes to grow upright and prevent them from bending or breaking.
6. How long does it take for split peas to mature?
Split peas typically take 90 to 100 days to mature and be ready for harvest.
7. Can split peas be grown in pots indoors?
No, split peas are not suitable for indoor growing as they require abundant sunlight to thrive.
Split Peas are an easy, nutritious and affordable option for gardeners looking to grow their own food. They are packed with protein, complex carbohydrates, potassium, magnesium, and fiber. Split Peas are a hardy annual that can easily be grown in most regions and are an easy crop to harvest and store. Split Peas can also be used in a number of recipes, adding a unique and delicious flavor to meals.