How to Grow Peas From Seed


* This article contains affiliate links. For more information, please read my Affiliate Disclosure.

 

Peas are one of the easiest and most rewarding vegetables to grow in your home garden. Learn how to grow peas from seed with these simple instructions and grow your own homegrown peas this gardening season! #howtogrowpeas #growpeasfromseedPeas are high on my list of vegetables I love to grow (and eat!). We’ve planted peas in our garden every year since we started growing an edible garden, and we’ve always ended up with a bumper crop for fresh eating and freezing for later. 

Seriously, every morning that I go out to our garden while our peas are producing, there are dozens more pea pods ripe for the picking! Every. Morning.

We also save the pea seeds (which are some of the easiest seeds to save out of any garden vegetable), and then when the plants are finally finished producing, we mulch them into our compost to add nitrogen back into our soil. 

Oh, and have I mentioned how beautiful pea plants and flowers are while they’re growing? Plus, their bright green leaves and purple flowers aren’t just attractive to us humans, they’re attractive to bees and other pollinators too, making them an all-around fantastic addition to any home garden.

And there are so many ways to enjoy them! We eat peas fresh off the vine, add them to salads and stir fries or just eat them raw with a little dip, and we whatever we can’t eat fresh we blanch and freeze for later. I actually still have a bag of peas in my freezer from last summer, and we only grew eight plants!

I guess what I’m trying to say is, you would be crazy NOT to grow peas in your garden too!

Peas are one of the easiest and most rewarding vegetables to grow in your home garden. Learn how to grow peas from seed with these simple instructions and grow your own homegrown peas this gardening season! #howtogrowpeas #growpeasfromseed

We grow Sugar Snap Peas (Dwarf Grey heirloom variety) and LOVE them. But the following growing methods work the same for all pea varieties, although time until harvest will depend on whether you’re growing snap peas, snow peas or shelling peas.

Here’s how to get started growing peas at home…

 

How to Grow Peas From Seed

The Basics:

  • Direct sow seeds outdoors as soon as the soil can be worked in the spring.
  • Plant in a well-drained area and do not pre-soak. Pea seeds should be kept moist but can rot if they are left sitting in water for too long.
  • Seeds can be sown from early to late spring for a summer harvest.
  • Seeds can be sown again in summer (July and August) for a fall crop.
  • Sow seeds 1” deep, 1-3” apart in the spring. Sow seeds 2” deep in the summer (to keep the seeds cooler and protected from the heat of the sun).
  • Seeds take one-two weeks to germinate on average, but warmer soil will help them germinate quicker and visa versa.
  • Plant different varieties at least 10 feet apart to prevent cross-pollination (if you plan on saving seeds)

The Details:

Peas prefer cooler weather, so plant early for an abundant late spring/early summer harvest. However if you don’t get them in the ground as soon as your soil can be worked, don’t worry; There’s a fairly large window for pea-planting so get them in the ground any time before the end of spring (usually by the end of May in cooler and more temperate climates) and you should still get a good summer harvest.

Picking peas

Peas do best when their seeds are direct sown in the place that they will stay. Their roots don’t like being disturbed, and they don’t need to be babied like some other heat-loving or slow-growing plants, so they don’t need to be started indoors. However if you do start them indoors, plant them in pots that can be transplanted directly into the ground without having to remove the pea plant. We use these peat pots, which can go directly into the ground and will break down in the soil and allow the roots to break through them. Homemade newspaper seed pots work well too.

Direct sow seeds 1” deep in the early to mid spring, and sow deeper (up to 2” deep) in the late spring and summer to keep seeds cool and protect them from the heat of the sun. Optimal soil temperature for peas is between 50-70ºF (10-20ºC). Pea seeds usually take one to two weeks to germinate but can take up to a month in cooler soil. 

Make sure to plant them in an area with well-drained soil, especially if you get a lot of rain in the spring. Pea seeds can rot if left to sit in water for too long.

Peas are light feeders and actually fix nitrogen in the soil. They also grow vertically, which means they don’t need much space to grow and thrive. Plant seeds 1-3” apart and let them grow. Don’t worry about thinning as they sprout.

Peas are self-pollinators, so there’s very little chance of them crossing with other varieties. Still, if you’re growing more than one variety of pea plants in your garden, try to grow different varieties at least 10 feet apart to prevent any chance of cross-pollination.

Peas are one of the easiest and most rewarding vegetables to grow in your home garden. Learn how to grow peas from seed with these simple instructions and grow your own homegrown peas this gardening season! #howtogrowpeas #growpeasfromseed

 

Caring for Pea Plants

The Basics:

  • Peas plants grow vertically, so they will need a trellis to climb.
  • Harvest snap/snow peas early and often. Harvest shelling peas later in the season once peas have had a chance to grow and fill out the pods.
  • Save pea seeds by allowing pods to fully ripen and dry out on the vine. Then harvest, remove peas from pods and store in a cool, dry place until next year.
  • Once peas have stopped producing, remove vines from the soil, mulch and either add back into the garden to add nitrogen to the soil or add to compost for the same benefit.

The Details:

Peas require very little hands-on care, however once they sprout, they will need something to climb.

Provide peas with a trellis. You can make your own by constructing a simple wood frame and attaching pieces of twine, build a full wooden trellis, use some cattle panels or chicken wire or you can purchase a ready-made trellis. It’s best to add your trellis at the time of planting so that you don’t disrupt the plants’ roots later on.

Pea trellis

We made a homemade trellis by making a simple wooden frame and stringing some twine from top to bottom. We’ve successfully grown our peas and pole beans on this trellis for a couple years now.

If you don’t provide them with something to climb they will not grow tall and will not produce peas (or at least not many), so this is the most important part of growing peas at home. You might need to help train the pea vines to climb the trellis, but all you need to do is guide their tendrils to where you want them to latch on and they’ll do the rest.

Otherwise pea plants are pretty low-maintenance. Usually you’ll get your first harvest roughly a month and a half to two months after planting. Harvest peas with edible pods (snow peas and snap peas) once they reach full-length, but before they fill out too much. 

Snow peas have pods that are very flat with small peas, whereas snap peas have edible pods but the peas will grow larger and fill pods out more. Harvest both types often once they start producing (once every two or three days is best). Harvesting often also encourages the plant to produce more, which will increases your over all harvest.

Shelling Peas

For shelling peas (aka. sweet peas/English peas), wait to harvest them until the peas are large and round and the pods are nice and plump. Since you won’t be eating the pods, you want the peas to get nice and big.

Saving pea seeds is incredibly easy too. To save pea seeds, allow pods to ripen and dry on the vine. Then remove pods and shell (remove) peas from the pods. Store dried peas in a cool, dry place and replant the following year.

Saving pea seeds

 

Processing and preserving peas

Since peas are high-yielding plants, you’ll probably end up with more peas than you can eat fresh. So what’s the best way to preserve them?

If you’re growing shelling peas, you can dry them, freeze them or can them for use later on. If you’re growing peas with edible pods (snow and/or snap peas), you’re best to freeze them as they don’t lend themselves well to canning.

Sugar snap peas

To freeze peas (any variety), blanch them first in boiling water. Blanch pea pods for 2 or 3 minutes and blanch shelled sweet peas for about 1.5 minutes. Lay them on a tray and flash freeze before transferring to a Ziplock bag.

To dehydrate shelled peas, blanch for 1.5 minutes (long enough to pierce the skin) and then transfer to dehydrator trays to dry. I’ve never tried dehydrating snap/snow peas, but have found lots of recipes online for making pea “crisps” by dehydrating them. So you can dry them if you have a dehydrator and enjoy them year-round, however I haven’t been able to find any information on how well they rehydrate, so let me know if you try it!

If canning shelled peas, be sure to use a pressure canner and follow a tested recipe to ensure a safe final product.

While peas make great candidates for preserving (and it’s nice to have some on hand for year-round eating), don’t forget to enjoy them fresh! Nothing says it’s the start of summer like a salad made with baby greens, sliced garden tomatoes and freshly picked snap peas. Or sauté them and add the to stir fries or enjoy as a side dish with some barbecued meats. And of course, enjoy them straight off the vine. Because the only thing better than dipping into a jar of home-canned food is eating homegrown food right out of the garden:)

For more tips on growing a vegetable garden from seed, check out the following tutorials:

And don’t forget to grab a free copy of our FREE Seed Starting Cheat Sheet, with instructions on growing 10 common garden vegetables from seed.

Wishing you homemade, homegrown, homestead happiness 🙂

 

 

 

P.S. Want more help growing your own food at home? Download my free guide, How to Grow Your Own Food in Less Than 15 Minutes A Day and learn how to grow an organic grocery store in your backyard even if you’re limited on time!


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2 Comments

  1. G. Miller

    Will pea seeds germinate well if saved for 2 years?

    Reply
    • Anna Sakawsky

      Yes, they should, so long as they were stored correctly (ie. allowed to dry out completely before storing if they were saved).

      Reply

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ABOUT ANNA
Hi! I’m Anna, and I’m a city girl turned modern homesteader who’s passionate about growing, cooking and preserving real food at home, creating my own herbal medicine and all-natural home and body care products, and working toward a simpler, more sustainable and self-sufficient life each and every day. 
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Never before have we had access to so much information at our fingertips. Whether you have a question you need answered, are looking for a tutorial to walk you through a specific task or are searching for a recipe to help you figure out what to make for dinner, all you have to do is Google it.⁣

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That what sets Homestead Living magazine apart from much of the information you'll find online: We don't have staff writers, we have experienced homesteaders sharing their hard-won wisdom in each issue. And while we do offer a digital version, we're also now offering monthly PRINT issues for U.S. subscribers (Canada and elsewhere hopefully coming soon!)⁣

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When I graduated from university with a degree in journalism many years ago, I remember thinking that while I knew how to write, edit, interview, shoot, and handle just about every part of creating a publication from the editorial standpoint, I really had no clue how to actually get published, let alone how the printing process works.

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27 5

It’s been a minute since I popped into IG to say hi. (Hi! 👋) But before I share what’s been going on behind the scenes, I thought it would be a good time to (re)introduce myself, because I’ve never actually done that before!

My name’s Anna, and I’m a city girl turned modern homesteader living in the beautiful Comox Valley on Vancouver Island. I live with my family (human, furry and feathered) on 1/4 acre property where we grow and preserve hundreds of pounds of our own food every year, and strive to live a more self-reliant lifestyle in all that we do.

I grew up in Vancouver and had pretty much zero experience homesteading before my husband, Ryan and I decided we wanted to escape the rat race, become less dependent on the modern industrial food system (and all modern industrialized systems), and dove head first into this lifestyle around a decade ago.

We packed up and moved to Vancouver Island where we live now, started our first garden, and the rest is pretty much history.

(Well, actually that’s not true… There have been A LOT of ups and downs, successes and failures, wins and losses, struggles, challenges and pivotal moments along the way, but those are stories for another day).

Over the past few years, our decision to follow a less conventional path that aims to break free (at least in some part) from “the system” has been affirmed over and over again. We all know for a fact now that our food system, healthcare system, financial system, transportation system and so much more are all really just a house of cards built on shaky ground. We’ve been lucky so far, but sooner or later it’s all liable to collapse.

But preparedness and security isn’t the only thing that drives us… The peace of mind I get knowing that everything we grow is 100% organic, and that the ingredients in our food, medicine, personal and household products are safe and natural is worth more than anything I could buy at the grocery store.

(I’m not perfect though. Not by a long shot. I still rely on the grocery store, on modern medicine, and on many modern conveniences to get by, but I balance it as much as I can:)

(Continued in comments…)
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I’m all about practical gifts; Gifts that will truly make life easier and contribute to my and my family’s wellbeing. And our family includes our animals!

One of the ways we make sure our chickens are taken care of is by letting them free range during the day, but making sure they’re locked up and safe from predators at night. But who wants to be up at the crack of dawn to open the coop, or wake up to a bloodbath because you forgot to close the coop the night before?

(The answer is obviously no one… No one wants that).

Automating our homesteading tasks as much as possible allows us to worry about other things and saves us a ton of time. Plus, it makes sure that things get taken care of, whether we remember or not.

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Yes, you read that right…

Modern Homesteading Magazine is coming to an end.

This decision has not come easily, but there’s a season for everything, and more and more I’m feeling called to transition out of this season and into the next in both life and business.

And so this final farewell issue is bittersweet. On the one hand, it’s the first ever annual issue, with 100 pages packed with brand new content that celebrates the best of the past 32 issues!

And it’s the first issue I’ve ever offered in PRINT!

But on the other hand, it marks the end of an era, and of this publication that I’ve absolutely had the pleasure of creating and sharing with you.

If you’re a digital subscriber, you will not be charged a renewal fee going forward, and will continue to have access to the digital library until your subscription runs out. As part of your subscription, you’re able to download and/or print each issue of you like, so that you never lose access to the hundreds of articles and vast amount of information in each issue.

Rather than subscribing, you can now purchase an all-access pass for a one-time fee of just $20, which gives you access to our entire digital library of issues.

Plus, for a limited time, when you purchase an all-access pass you’ll also get a gift certificate for a second all-access pass to gift to someone else.

I’m also still taking preorders for the print version of this special edition issue, but only for a few more weeks!

When you preorder the print issue, you’ll also get a digital copy of the special edition issue (this issue only), and will receive a print copy in the mail later this year (hopefully by Christmas so long as there are no shipping delays!)

Click the link in my profile or visit modernhomesteadingmagazine.com to check out the latest issue, purchase an all-access pass to the digital library and/or preorder the print issue today!

Thanks to everyone who has read the magazine over the past 4 years. I’m humbled and grateful for your support, and can’t wait to share whatever comes next:)

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It’s easy to romanticize homesteading, but the truth is that those homegrown vegetables, those freshly laid eggs, that loaf of bread rising on the counter, and that pantry full of home-canned food takes time, effort and dedication. It doesn’t “just happen” overnight!

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That’s where I’m at now. Life today looks a lot different than it did 10 years ago, when our homesteading and self-reliance journey was just beginning.

Back then we still lived in our city condo and were just beginning to dabble in all of this stuff. But my husband Ryan and I felt a sense urgency to start pursuing a more self-reliant lifestyle, and we committed to taking small steps, one day at a time to make that vision a reality.

Over the years we’ve continued to put one foot in front of the other, adding new skills and tackling new projects along the way that have helped us get to where we are today.

While there’s always more we want to learn and do, as I look around me right now, I’m so grateful that we took those first steps, especially considering what’s happened in the world over the past few years!

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Link in profile to enroll before midnight tonight, or go to thehouseandhomestead.com/society

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There are so many reasons to grow your own food at home:

💰 Saves you money at the grocery store
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But perhaps the number one reason is because it just tastes better!

Not only does food taste better when it’s freshly picked or allowed to ripen on the vine, there’s something about putting in the work to grow something from a tiny seed and then getting to see it on your dinner plate that just makes it so much more satisfying than anything you’ll ever buy from the store.

Plus, having to wait all year for fresh tomatoes or strawberries or zucchinis to be in season makes that short period when they’re available just that much more exciting!

With the world spinning out of control and food prices continuing to rise, it’s no wonder more people are taking an interest in learning to grow their own food at home. But that also means changing our relationship with food and learning to appreciate the work that goes into producing it and the natural seasonality of organically grown fruits and vegetables.

(It also means learning to preserve it so you can make the most of it and enjoy homegrown food all year long).

In my online membership program, The Society of Self-Reliance, you’ll learn how to grow your own food, from seed to harvest, as well as how to preserve it so you can enjoy the fruits (and vegetables) of your labor all year long!

You’ll also learn how to grow and craft your own herbal medicine, detox your home, become your own handyman, and so much more (because self-reliance is about more than just the food that we eat… But that’s a pretty good place to start!)

The doors to the Society are now open for a limited time only. Click the link in my profile or go to thehouseandhomestead.com/society to learn more.

#foodsecurity #homegrownfood #homesteading #selfreliance #selfsufficiency #homegrownfoodjusttastesbetter
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If you’ve been watching events unfold over the past few years and you’re feeling called to start “cutting ties” with the system and begin reclaiming your independence, The Society of Self-Reliance was made for you!

When I first launched this online membership program last year, my goal was to create a one-stop resource where members could go to learn and practice every aspect of self-reliance, as well as a space to connect with other like-minded people pursuing the same goal. And that’s exactly what you’ll get when you join!

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🌱 Food Security and Self-Sufficiency: Learn the art of growing and preserving your own food, ensuring you and your loved ones have access to nutritious meals year-round.

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📚 Monthly Video Lessons: Gain access to our ever-growing library of video lessons, with fresh content added each month.

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Link in profile or visit thehouseandhomestead.com/society to learn more.

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Got out for an early morning harvest today. Been up since 3am, contemplating life, the future and the past, the order of things…

There is a rumbling right now, not just in North America, but around the world. Many of us can feel it, and know we are on the precipice of something big.

I’d been hearing about this new song that’s become an overnight viral sensation, written by an (until now) unknown singer named Oliver Anthony. His new song Rich Men North of Richmond has had 14 million views on YouTube in the past week alone, so I decided to check it out.

I also saw a clip of him playing a Farmers Market last week, and anything that has to do with Farmers Markets always has my attention;)

I can’t tell you how many tears I’ve already cried listening to that song. If you’ve heard it already, you probably know what I’m talking about, and if you haven’t, I highly recommend giving it a listen. All I can say is it’s been a while since a song resonated so deeply with me, and in this strange new world, I know I’m not the only one.

One of the lines in Anthony’s song is “Livin’ in the new world, with an old soul,” and that’s something I think so many of us in the homesteading community can relate to.

Trying to cling to better days; To a simpler time; To the old ways, all while doing our best to get by in the new world.

The world has changed drastically in the last few years especially, and it’s set to change in immense ways over the next few years. Today I’m feeling thankful for people like @oliver_anthony_music_ who give a voice to what so many are feeling right now.

Know that if you’re feeling it too, you’re far from alone. And while the future may feel uncertain and even a little scary, remember that if we stand united, we the people are a force to be reckoned with.

(Continued in comments…)
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Another garlic harvest in the books!

Garlic is easily one of my favourite crops to grow. It’s pretty much a “set if and forget it” crop. We plant in the fall and leave it to overwinter, fertilize a couple times in the spring, start watering only once the ground starts to dry out, and then harvest in the summer. We can even plant a fall succession crop after our garlic if we want so it really makes great use of garden space all year round.

Over the years we’ve managed to become completely self-sufficient with garlic. We now grow enough to eat all year (and then some!), plus we save our own seed garlic and usually have extra to sell or give away. And around here fresh, organic garlic ain’t cheap, so it’s a good cash crop for anyone who’s serious about selling it.

It took me a few years to really get the hang of garlic, but it’s one crop I’m now very confident with (knock on wood, because it’s always when we make statements like this that next year’s crop fails! Lol.)

A while back I compiled a comprehensive guide to growing, harvesting and using garlic both as an edible and medicinal crop. This is usually only available as part of a paid bundle (or in the fall 2022 issue of Modern Homesteading Magazine if you’re a subscriber;), but for a limited time I’m offering it for free, no strings attached!

Plus you’ll also get access to my step-by-step video lesson on planting garlic so you can set yourself up for success with your garlic crop this year.

Comment “Garlic” below or head to thehouseandhomestead.com/garlic-guide to get your free copy!
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#garlic #garlicharvest #homesteading #selfsufficient #selfsufficiency #selfsufficientliving #selfreliance #homegrown #groworganic #growfoodnotlawns #gardenersofinstagram #homesteadersofinstagram
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Going through photos and videos from our trip to the @modernhomesteadingconference and the vast majority are of our daughter having the time of her life!

Even if I personally got nothing else out of this gathering (which I most certainly did), watching her discover her own love of this lifestyle outside of what we do at home made my heart grow three sizes!

Homesteading is about so much more than homegrown food and self-reliance. It’s about passing on invaluable skills and an understanding of and respect for our connection to the land that provides for us to the next generation.

Being around so many other kids and families who are also pursuing a homesteading lifestyle helped show our little one that this is a movement that is so much bigger and greater than what our own family does on our little plot of land. This is a lifestyle worth pursuing, with a community unlike any other.

Glad to be back home and more excited than ever to involve my kids in everything we’re doing. But also, I think I speak for my whole family when I say we can’t wait to go back someday!
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#homesteading #modernhomesteading #raisinglittles
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If you’re simply looking for ways to save a little extra cash this summer and live well for less, here are 12 tried and tested frugal living tips for summer that you can use to save money this season without sacrificing a thing.
Head over using the link in my bio!
https://thehouseandhomestead.com/12-frugal-living-tips-summer/
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