Tom the Elder
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What is the yield from peas?

I plan to start some pea seeds tomorrow (Alaska - wilt resistant). While I am trying to do more canning, the odds are we will only eat them fresh. Can anyone give me an idea what kind of yield to expect? Also, how long do peas produce? I presume they keep producing for a while, but it would be good to know when to start the second planting so they come on just as the first is declining. Thanks.

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Ozark Lady
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Alaska, I believe is a green pea.
They are a cool season crop. They seem to work best as an early spring, and late fall crop.
I don't have much luck with them, I tend to plant too late or something, and the heat kills them. And I have not tried them as a fall crop, but they should work, although germinating in hot weather could be difficult... cold stratify?
Talk to your plants.... If your plants talk to you... Run!

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rainbowgardener
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I gave up on growing peas, because I am a city gardener with very little room and they take up too much space. In my experience, they don't keep producing. They produce one crop of peas, you pick those and it's over. If you want more peas you have to do succession plantings. Start another batch of peas 2 wks behind the first and another batch 2 weeks behind that. And by then it will be too hot for them and you will be done with peas.

That's just me, maybe I was doing something wrong, but that's my experience.

elementfiftyfour
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I grow a sugar snap and super snappy peas down here in New Orleans and they do pretty well up to about mid June. I have started my seeds in the 72 cell flats and in about 2 weeks i'll put those in the ground. As rainbow suggested, I put in another row directly into the ground about 2 weeks later and we are able to pick peas for dinner-for-two from about mid April to mid June. By then the beans are producing and we switch over to the beans for dinner.

I haven't done it yet but this year i want to plant a second crop of peas in mid to late August to see if they do well throughout the fall months. I'm guessing they will be alright since it is still moderately warm up to December down here.

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Ozark Lady
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You grow green peas in Louisiana? Wow!
Okay, it must not just be our temperature...
It must be, I am planting too late, or something with my soil...
I never thought of starting pea seeds inside...
Oops looks like it is me, that is the problem... as usual...
Talk to your plants.... If your plants talk to you... Run!

Tom the Elder
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Thanks all. It can get hot here in the Central Valley as early as May so I already started the seeds and plan to get them into my raised beds in two weeks. Normally the soil would still be too cold until April, but I built pvc/plastic sheeting covers that I am hoping will have the soil sufficiently warm by then. Wish me luck.

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Gary350
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My experience with peas is a 20 ft row only makes enough peas for 1 meal for 1 person.

About 25 years ago I had an old lady about 70 years old tell me to throw the pea seeds out into the snow. She said, just throw them out like grass seed. Throw then everywhere. When the weather gets right they will come up in the spring. I figured it was worth a try so I did it. Weather started getting nice in April and I picketed a bushel basket of peas.

Nice thing was peas were gone about the time I wanted to till the garden and plant other things.

It has been many many years since I have seen a pea remover at the garden store. You can make your own pea remover drill a hole in a piece of wood. Hole needs to be just barely large enough for a pea pod to go through. Put a small 1" long line of epoxy glue on 1 side of the board starting at the hole. Stand a single edge razor blade 90 degrees in the board in the glue sharp edge down make sure the sharp edge over laps about 1/3 of the hole. When glue dries push a pea pod through the hole pull it out the other side it cuts the pod open so you can get the peas out easy. Slide your finger over the slot in the pod the peas roll right out. I have been wondering if maybe 2 or 3 razor blades might work better than just 1 blade. This crazy gizmo sure does make the job easy.

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applestar
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Hmm. I should try this on soft snow. Right now, the surface of the snow is frozen and if I did anything like that, the birds and squirrels will think I'm feeding them. :roll: :lol: I want to grow more peas to freeze this year. Thanks for the description of the gizmo. :wink:

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jal_ut
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Peas are a cool weather crop. If you get winter snow, you can plant as soon as the snow is off and the ground gets dry enough to work without making clods. Peas do not like to germinate in warm weather. Peas do have some frost resistance, so they can survive some mild frosts after they come up.

Freezer varieties like Victory Freezer and Lincoln come ready all at once. You get one picking.

Wando and Little Marvel have the harvest spread out a bit. You may get 3 pickings over ten to fourteen days. They are not all ready at once.

Plant them directly in the garden. I would suggest half a pound of seed.
Plant 5 rows ten inches apart and 15 feet long. When the peas get up run a hoe between the rows to remove weeds. They like to have damp soil, but not soggy. No trellis needed. When these are ready, you will have enough to put some in the freezer.
Gardening at 5000 feet elevation, zone 4/5 Northern Utah, Frost free from May 25 to September 8 +/-

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applestar
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Oh! Good to know. I just bought Lincoln and have 1/2 pkt of Wando left from last year. (I think I grew Little Marvel the year before last, I didn't see it in my seed box but remember the name. I guess I'm buying the right varieties :wink: ) I also bought a packet of Telephone Pole which is supposed to be pole peas, so this one *will* need trellising unlike others. I read somewhere, forgot where, that pole peas are become rare in the U.S. market.

Thanks for the growing tips, I've attached it to my planting schedule :()

cynthia_h
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John Jeavons (How to Grow More Vegetables, 7th ed.) has incredibly detailed charts with information on possible Yield in Pounds per 100-square-foot planting area using Grow BioIntensive methods, which are described in the book, and many other points of information.

According to Jeavons--who has at least 30 years' worth of records to back him up--a 1st-year Grow Bio gardener could expect a 25-lb harvest, a 2nd-year 53 lb, and a 3rd-year 106 lb. These numbers are for fresh peas, not dried. The "dried" numbers are 4, 10, and 24, respectively.

However, the "Intensive" in "Grow BioIntensive" is a serious word. Another column in the chart is entitled "MAXIMUM No. Plants per 100 Square Feet." This name is followed by a small numeral 7 which represents a fairly complicated note on plant spacing.

In any case, the maximum number of pea plants in 100 sq. ft. using the hexagonal spacing and Jeavons' system 100% is 2,507. I think it's safe to assume that the harvest amounts are based on a very large number of plants; maybe not 2,507, but certainly a lot of plants.

We grew a few sugar snap pea plants in Spring 2008 and a few in Spring 2009. I just couldn't take the waste of shelling peas; throwing the pods into the compost just seemed wrong to me. The sugar snap peas (edible pods) went into mixed stir fries and were just terrific! I only harvested a handful at a time, but their character enlivened the whole stir fry, which consisted of kale, chard, bok choy, spinach, broccoli leaves, and the sugar snap peas.

You're in Sunset climate zone 14. Knowing this, and referring to the Sunset Western Garden Book, will help tremendously in timing the planting, harvesting, and selection of successful varieties for your garden.

Happy gardening! :D

Cynthia H.
Sunset Zone 17, USDA Zone 9

Tom the Elder
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Thanks!

Thanks all for so many helpful and interesting replies! All in all it sounds like peas are not a good choice for me but I will go ahead and plant the 36 seedlings I have to see how they do. I will let you know what happens in a couple of months.

Tom

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