Differences in English and Field Peas
Everyone has their preference on which pea they prefer; if you are a northerner, you may like the English ones better. If you are raised in the south, black-eyed peas may be your favorite, either way, there is a type for everyone. What is even better is when they are fresh out of your garden instead of from the grocery store. Here at Hoss Tools, we want everyone to be able to grow their food, and in this blog, we are going to talk about some different varieties of peas as well as what is the best way to grow them and store them. We hope this encourages you to go out and start your garden.
Our two main categories with peas are English peas (Mr.Big, Green Arrow, Oregon Sugar Pod), and Field peas (Summertime Pinkeye, Dixie Lee, Zipper Cream). There is all kind of seeds out there, and here at Hoss Tools we have many varieties of both, and it just comes down to your preference. Field peas have more of the bean taste, whereas the English varieties are the traditional sweet green ones. We have started to enjoy growing the Summertime Pinkeye field pea, though, because the crop grows at the top, it is effortless to harvest also, this variety is easy to shell. They are a purple pull, but its a green pea that creates a clear broth. In the south, we grow our English peas in the early spring, and once those get harvested, we switch over to the Field peas.
So How do I Grow Them?
Growing the perfect pea takes many different steps, but what we have found to work best isn’t too tricky. With any pea, you are going to want to plant them four inches apart and one inch deep. This spacing tends to work out well. We suggest planting with a walk-behind seeder like our Hoss Garden Seeder and usually using the number five seed plate. Looking at the size of your seed and seeing which seed plate you are going to use is critical because if the hole is too big, you may end up wasting seed or jamming the plate. Planting on drip tape is also very beneficial with peas in helping to conserve water. You want to harvest your crop when they look full and like they could be shelled easily. Depending on the variety, they will be anywhere from four to eight inches in length. Most varieties have an average of about 60 days until maturity. Meaning that in about two months after you plant, you will be ready to have some black-eyed peas for dinner.
Ways to Preserve
After harvesting your crop, there are going to be way more than you can eat, if you plant a lot as we do. Though we always suggest sharing with your friends, there are also many ways to make sure they don’t go bad. A couple of different ways you can preserve the pea itself is to freeze them, salt them, dry them, or canning. You can also maintain the whole pod by freezing or salting. Dried beans store very well and can get rehydrated for those special occasions. Black-eye peas are also a great addition to fresh salads and soups. These different ways will help you keep your crop good and fresh until you are ready to cook them!
If you want to know more about the Hoss garden seeder or growing your food, even if it is not peas, check out the video below!