Fresh snap peas are a delicious snack and make a great stir fry, so you might wonder how I keep my snap peas producing all year? Of course, you can freeze a bunch and have it on hand for the seasonal meals. But nothing comes close to a juicy, fresh snap pea.
The method is not as complex, but it might take you a few seasons to master. Time is crucial when it comes to your yearly supply of fresh snap peas. Grown peas dislike the hot and sunny weather, but seeds can grow even in July!
How To Plant Sugar Snap Peas?
You can plant snap peas as soon as the soil thaws out, and you can work it. You don’t have to wait for the last frost at they can withstand a few days of cold weather. They can tolerate temperatures from 28 up to 70.
When the weather becomes too hot, the plant stops producing. But no worries, as long as the plant does not wilt, the process continues when the weather is cool enough. In some states, you can plant peas as early as February.
Snap peas grow best in well-draining soil and sunny site. Work in slow-release fertilizer with potassium and phosphorus or add some compost. There’s no need to add nitrogen as the pea plant produces it itself.
Build some garden beds with trellis before planting. This will ensure good draining, and the trellis gives the peas support as they grow taller.
Peas grow into a complete plant 2 to 2 1/2 months after sowing. This time can be extended if there’s a prolonged period of freezing cold weather.
Your plant is ready for the first harvest as soon as you notice plump and juicy snap peas. But be careful when picking some as the vine is fragile.
Growing Snap Peas In Summer
Did you know you can grow peas in summer? Although it’s not a common practice, you can have fresh snap peas in summer with careful planning.
You need to plant the first batch in late February or early March. After 60 to 70 days, you’ll be able to harvest some produce. While you’re still reaping the fruits of the first batch, prepare for planting the second one.
Pick a more shaded and cooler spot in your garden. Instead of raised beds, choose to sow them in-ground. The raised beds get warm quickly, and peas need soil that’s no more than 45°F. Cover the surrounding with mulch, as it will trap some moisture and keep the soil from overheating.
Have protective gear on hand if you live in an area that can get night frost, even in the summer months.
Then, in July, sow the second snap peas for a late harvest. They will take more time to germinate in comparison to the first batch, so don’t hope for the 70 days mark.
Read more about Growing Sugar Snap Peas In Containers.
How To Keep The Snap Peas Producing All Year?
A single snap pea plant can’t keep on yielding the whole year. So if you’re wondering, how do I keep my snap peas producing all year, the answer is – continuous planting.
You can plant snap peas in USDA Hardiness Zones 3 to 11, so they’re a relatively hardy crop.
Snap peas are easier to grow in their designated season when the ground is less than 45 and the temperatures don’t go over 70. But when you want a continuous harvest from spring to early fall, plant new seeds every two weeks.
If you can’t be bothered, schedule at least 2 periods to sow new plants. Seeds tend to germinate harder when the ground is hotter. Soak the seed in nearly boiling water 12 to 24 hours before planting to give them a boost. If you want to take it a step further, treat the seeds with a legume inoculant.
Storing and consuming snap peas
Snap peas are consumed whole, so there’s no special preparation as shelling. Once you’ve harvested a large quantity, keep them in the refrigerator for up to 5 days. Wash the snap peas before consuming, not before storing them in the fridge. It’s best to keep them in a plastic bag.
The longer you keep the snap peas, the less tasty they become. Instead of crunchy and sweet, they’re soft and mild.
If you can’t consume them at this time, wash and blanch the rest. Let them cool and store in the freezer. Frozen snap peas keep up for 8 months. But the quality, taste, and looks are nowhere near the fresh ones.
How Much Does A Single Pea Plant Produce?
A single snap peas plant produces between 2 to 5 oz per season.
If you love snap peas and consume them regularly, plant at least 15 snap pea plants per person in your family.
You can increase production by keeping the soil moist. It’s best to water 2 to 3 times per week. Always provide a trellis for support and let the plant develop its full potential.
Adding an inoculant is a way to make a drastic change to the number of peas your plant produces.
What’s pea shoots?
When you live in an area that gets too hot, and your snap peas stop producing, you can grow pea shoots.
Pea shoots are just like microgreens and take 2 to 4 weeks to grow. They require little sun exposure and can be grown indoors throughout the year. They still pack the pea flavor but don’t have any pods, just tiny leaves.
Grow them from regular peas in containers and harvest when they’re 3 to 4 inches tall. Pea shoots work great in salads and sandwiches.
Bottom Line: How To Enjoy Fresh Sugar Snap Peas All Year?
Nothing replaces a freshly picked snap pea right from your garden. But how to keep your snap peas producing all year? Don’t expect a single plant to keep on yielding all year. Instead, sow new seed every two weeks until late fall.
Snap peas can stop producing when it’s too hot, so place them in-ground in a somewhat shaded and colder spot in your garden. Keep an eye on the moisture level and water frequently.
Does your family love snap peas? Let them know you can have them fresh yearlong!