28 June 2016 AD
After Pam Baker mentioned how she liked Petit Pois peas in a comment at this blog, I tracked down some seeds and planted one of my raised garden beds with them. Specifically, I planted two rows down the center of the 30" wide bed (x 15' long). The two rows were 4" apart and the seeds were planted 1" apart in the rows. That planting scheme worked very well. It has been noted in my Whizbang Garden Journal, and I'll repeat it in future years when growing "bed peas," (as opposed to trellised peas).
I planted the seeds on March 24. We harvested the peas yesterday.
It's worth noting that we have had a long stretch of hot and dry weather here, and I did no watering of the plants. Nevertheless, they grew vigorously, produced an abundance of pods, and the pods all matured at pretty much the same time. Had I planted the bed more intensely, I suspect the plants would have had a difficult time getting adequate moisture from the subsoil.
My wife, Marlene, pulled all the vines and brought them to the patio behind our house, where we have shade from the sun. We then picked off all the pods, before commencing to shell them.
We hand-shelled together for nearly an hour and a half. The pleasure of hand-shelling peas started to wane after about half an hour. I was glad when that job was done.
Marlene will freeze the peas and we will enjoy them through the winter.
I'm wondering if anyone reading this has used a pea-sheller device of some sort to shell English peas, like these. If so, what kind, and how well did it work?