Monday, February 23, 2009

Snap Pea Challenge Update

One week into the snap pea challenge, and we already have results!

Last Sunday, I planted twelve pea seeds in ten peat pots. Eight were pre-soaked for about 11 hours in room-temperature water, and four were planted straight in without soaking. Four of the pre-soaked peas were doubled up in their pots; this was actually an administrative error, as I grabbed the wrong number of peat pots at checkout, but it made for a nice experimentation opportunity.

Yesterday, we returned from a family wedding to discover that six of the eight soaked peas had sprouted while we were gone (either Saturday or Sunday), including three of the doubled-up ones. None of the unsoaked peas have come up, although a few look like they are close. It looks as though, all other things being equal, the soaked-pea technique may have an edge, and the doubled-up peas don't seem to have suffered any from crowding, although it'll also be interesting to see how strong all the plants end up.

Eventually, some of these plants will move out to a new garden bed on the south side of the house, so they can scramble up the dining room wall. The rest will be re-potted into a window box and left in the south-facing living room window, where, with any luck, they'll climb up the window. Although I don't have any sort of support in place yet, the plan is to make a trellis of sorts out of fishing line, criss-crossing the window. If it looks feasible, I might try the same thing outside. Ideally, I'll get to start another small batch of seeds in a week or so, with the Munchkin's help, so he'll get the experience of growing his own peas too.

Joe periodically teases me about my aversion to curtains. We live in the middle of a two-acre plot, so privacy - one of the very few reasons to cover a view of the outside, in my opinion - is not an issue. Who knows - maybe this will turn out to be a happy compromise!

3 people have weighed in:

lemming held forth

Please keep us posted - you are a braver gardener than I.

MrBrownThumb held forth

Cool post. I generally pre-soak seeds or scratch them a little to get them to take on water and sprout faster.

Alison held forth

Glad you liked the post, MrBrownThumb, and welcome! There's no question the soaked peas got a jump on the un-soaked variety, but as for overall vigor, it seems to be a draw. Still, I'm pretty impatient, so I think I'll stick to soaking.