Growing and harvesting your own garden veggies gives one huge sense of satisfaction. If you are without a garden proper or just low on yard space, most vegetables can be grown in containers; this includes growing peas in a container. Peas can be planted in a pot and kept inside or outside on a deck, patio, stoop, or roof.
How to Grow Peas in a Container
Container garden peas will undoubtedly yield a smaller harvest than those grown in a garden plot, but the nutrition is all still there, and it's a fun and low-cost means of growing your own peas. So the question is, “How to grow peas in containers?” Keep in mind that pot-grown peas require more water than garden grown, possibly up to three times a day. Due to this frequent irrigation, the nutrients are leached out from the soil, so fertilization is key to growing healthy peas in a container. First of all, choose the pea variety you wish to plant. Almost everything in the Leguminosae family, from snap peas to shelling peas, can be container grown; however, you may wish to select a dwarf or bush variety. Peas are a warm season crop, so growing peas in a container should begin in the spring when temperatures warm to over 60 degrees F. (16 C.). Next, select a container. Almost anything will work as long as you have drainage holes (or make three to five holes with a hammer and nail) and measures least 12 inches (31 cm.) across. Fill the container with soil leaving a 1 inch (2.5 cm.) space at the top. Create a support for the potted pea with bamboo poles or stakes set into the center of the pot. Space the pea seeds 2 inches (5 cm.) apart and 1 inch (2.5 cm.) beneath the soil. Water in thoroughly and top with a 1 inch (2.5 cm.) layer of mulch, like compost or wood chips. Keep the seeds in a lightly shaded area until germination (9-13 days) at which time you should move them to a full sun exposure.
Caring for Peas in Pots
- Keep an eye on whether the plant is too dry and water until the soil is moist but not drenched to prevent root rot. Don't overwater when in bloom, as it may interfere with pollination.
- Once the peas have sprouted, fertilize twice during the growing season, using a low nitrogen fertilizer.
- Be sure to protect your container grown peas from frost by moving them indoors.
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Amy Grant has been gardening for 30 years and writing for 15. A professional chef and caterer, Amy's area of expertise is culinary gardening.
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