Thompson & Morgan®: Vegetable Growing Guide
This crop repays careful preparation of the site as early in the year as possible. Choose an open, sunny position with deep soil organically manured and well drained. Just prior to sowing top dress with a balanced fertiliser.
Sow the early varieties in early spring with the maincrop following about four or five weeks later. Make a flat-bottomed drill about 6in (15cm) wide and 3in (7.5cm) deep. The space between each row should be approximately the height of the crop. Sow the seeds in three rows in the drill 2in (5cm) apart each way and cover with 2in (5cm) of soil.
Cover the rows with pea guards or stretch black cotton along the rows to protect the seedlings from birds. When the seedlings are about 4in (10cm) tall give support with twiggy sticks or netting supported by stakes.
The pea moth is the major pest and can be controlled by spraying a week after the first flowers open with soft soap or quassia and repeat for successive sowings.
Water regularly as the pods set and don't allow the pods to become overripe as this shortens the harvesting period. Any surplus peas can be frozen very successfully.
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