Peas in the pod are really just ordinary peas. Peas require no prior treatment although you could steep them in lukewarm water for 24 hours to encourage germination. Leaving them in water for longer (3-4 days) will see them shoot a 1 cm root, after which you really must sow them. Harvesting will be one week earlier if you do this.
Choose a spot where there is no fresh manure in the soil, and not too wet or cold. Improve the soil with humus (no fertiliser!) if necessary.
Tall and medium height peas need support and help to climb. Use chicken wire stretched between two poles. 120 cm high for medium peas... 2 m for taller. The pea tendrils generally manage to climb themselves but a little help will do no harm. Tip: place the chicken wire before sowing!
Sugar Snaps 'Delikett' - SeedPisum sativum 'Delikett'
Deliciously sweet flavour - easily grown!
This unusually flexible plant is a mange tout type pea in a pod. If you allow the pods to grow, you can eat them as a sugar snap to start with then as peas. The 'Delikett' is a wrinkly pea that is delightfully sweet, not at all mealy and can withstand all sorts of weather so is very easily grown!Show more
How to SowGermination will take up to 14 days. You can sow your peas in various ways:
- Directly in the garden, full sun, March and April. Loosen the soil with a fork up to 30 cm deep. There should be NO fresh manure in the soil and it should not be too damp or cold. Improving the soil with humus (manure free compost) could help. Draw a 4 cm deep furrow along a string stretched from end to end of a row and plant 1 pea every 10 cm. Cover the pea to about 4 or 5 cm, press lightly down and sprinkle with water. Label your rows with the variety. Planting distance between rows is 70 cm. A well anchored fleece tunnel will protect the seedlings from birds.
- Encourage early germination (and spoil the birds' chances of stealing your seedlings) by starting them off indoors. Sow 1 pea per pot in February, in pots filled with fine potting compost and cover to a max. depth of 3 cm. Press firmly down and sprinkle with water. Stand the pots at room temperature in the light. If they threaten to grow too large before they can go outdoors (too cold!), stand them in a cooler spot. Do not allow to dry out. Allow enough space between plants so that the leaves are almost touching. They can go outdoors from March, after being hardened off (outdoors in the shade, one hour longer each day for 5 days). Plant 10 cm apart in rows 70 cm apart.
Show moreEarth up your pea plants when they reach 12 cm in height.
Provide extra water in dry periods only and keep the bed weed-free to encourage your peas to thrive.
HarvestingHarvest from June through into the autumn.
This variety can be harvested at 3 different times - while the pod is still flat, when it's slightly plumper as a sugar snap, and as a pea!
The flat pods are harvested before the peas start to show through the pod.
Sugar snaps as they get bigger but are not fully matured like peas.
Peas are ready to be hulled when the peas are definitely visible in the pod - small peas are tastier than large ones
When harvesting your peas use both hands to prevent damage to the plant.
You must harvest weekly, and then shell them to get all your peas. Most people prefer young, small peas as these are the most tender and tasty. Once all the peas are harvested and there are no longer any flowers the plants can be dug up and discarded.
Show morePea varieties are selected for the peas, the pods not being edible. The reverse is also true - mange tout are selected for the tasty pod, tender and stringless. This variety brings you the best of both worlds.
Biologically speaking though, peas and mange tout are basically the same. (Pisum sativum). There are 2 kinds of pea: wrinkled and round. Wrinkled varieties are sown in March. They have a sweeter taste, don't go mealy, and do not mind the cold. The round-seeded peas can be sown very early (February –March) and have an aromatic flavour and are fairly hardy too - good for a nice pea soup! Medium and tall varieties bring a greater yield than dwarf varieties.
How to useFreshly picked pods, sugar snap peas and hulled peas taste better eaten fresh although a couple of days in the fridge will do no harm.
The pods and peas can be boiled or steamed and eaten with potatoes, rice or pasta. Do not cook them for too long as they taste better whilst still crisp. A wok is handy for cooking peas too! Peas can also be deep frozen.
Taste some raw, freshly harvested peas – lovely and sweet!