I’m so pleased with how my indoor peas have progressed that I feel as if I should have planted some more seeds, so I’ve decided to sow some outdoor peas.
I’ve stuck with the same variety as before, which is Kelvedon Wonder – you can read more about these here.
First I dug over and weeded the chosen bed and then I built a rudimentary zig-zag frame for the seedlings to grow up against.
Peas are climbers and so they need something to help support them and keep them off the ground.
The frame was connected with twine, but as the plants grow, I may add extra lengths of twine for extra support. Each peg was about a foot and a half apart, and about a foot high.
Young outdoor peas can be quite susceptible to pests, in particular, the birds, who will make short work of the greenery when it starts to poke through. So I’ve recycled the frame I originally built for my rhubarb and covered it in netting to keep the birds off.
The slugs will also have a field day with these, so I’ll look to create a slug bin to deter them from eating the fresh young shoots.
It’s been quite a busy month and so far I’ve been managed to plant shallots, garlic and sown broad beans, brussels sprouts, leeks, lettuces and peas.
Since then, however, I have been battling some pests as my seedlings did get eaten by a little mouse. I can’t blame the little blighters as the weather has been frosty at this time of year. However, this does mean that I’ve had to resow the broad beans and the peas about three times and I’ve had to put together a better coldframe.
I’ve also had to contend with birds pulling out the shallots from the ground. I’ve read a number of reasons as to why birds pull at bulbs, from thinking that the heads of the shallots are worms to them thinking that the tips of the onions are ideal nest-making materials. Needless to say, this has stunted progress!
Because of the delays, I was hoping to show off tiny green shoots, however, the only thing I have to show are a few tiny wisps.
Kelvedon Wonder has been awarded the RHS Award of Garden Merit (AGM) – so I’m hoping that it will live up to such an accolade at my humble allotment. Kelvedon Wonder are a good early and main crop, so I’m hoping that when May approaches I’ll be able to pick some tender pods off of the plants.
The plant is said to grow around 18″ high, with each pod producing between six to eight peas at a time, making this a perfect variety for small spaces, pots and containers.
I’m going to make a confession at this point because I’ve never really been that good at growing. They either get attacked by some sort of pest or I wind up leaving them too late and they end up like hard like bullets. This year, I vow to grow peas, worthy enough for a roast dinner or a cool summer salad. There are a number of ways to cook peas, so I’m looking forward to updating you with a recipe or two.
I’m sowing the Kelvedon Wonder peas into polystyrene cells first and keeping them in a cold frame to see if I can bring the seedlings along quicker. I’ve sown them two to a cell and poked them between 2cm to 5cm into some multi-purpose compost. I’ll look to plant these outdoors from April-May onward (temperatures permitting).
Another bonus point about this variety of pea is that Kelvedon Wonder is said to be resistant to mildew and pea wilt – but I will need to watch out for those pesky pea moths, who are probably the culprits to the issues I’ve faced in the past.
These are a great