Types of Peas
While most types of pea grow well in containers, some are more rewarding than others. The traditional English pea or garden pea is typically a shelling type of pea. These have inedible pods, and gardeners must wait until the seeds inside have matured before picking.
These are not the best option for container gardening. You need many plants to produce a harvest that will feed one or two people. Snow peas or snap peas, on the other hand, are perfect contenders for your container garden.
These two types of peas can be eaten pod and all. Because of this feature, they can also be harvested as soon as they appear. There’s no need to wait for snow peas to ripen, they are sweet and tender when young. Some popular varieties of snow pea include:
- Oregon Giant – Sweet, Open Pollinated, Large Pods, 70 days
- Dwarf Grey Sugar – Slender Pods, Open Pollinated, 66 days
- Avalanche – Semi-Leafless, Open Pollinated, 60 days
Snap peas are similar in that you can eat the sweet and tender pods. Snap peas can also be allowed to mature like a shelling pea if the seeds inside are what you’re after.
- Cascadia – Sweet and Crunchy, Disease Resistant, 67 Days
- Sugar Daddy – Stringless, Open Pollinated, 68 Days
- Sugar Ann – Very Sweet, Disease Resistant, 56 Days
Preparing your Containers
A good container is well draining with holes in the bottom, and at least 12 inches deep. The deeper the better. If you have a deep container, place some gravel or bottles in the bottom to fill in space and avoid compaction.
Fill the container with a general all-purpose organic potting soil. Mix in a couple of handfuls of compost as fertilizer. Add water to the soil before filling the container to ensure even moisture throughout.
Planting and Care
Leave 3 inches at the top of the container unfilled. Sprinkle in your pea seeds, or place them on top of the soil 1-inch apart. Then simply top off with potting soil. Fill until you’ve got a 1-inch lip to hold in water.
Keep the soil moist from then on, and place the container somewhere with 6 hours of sun or more per day. Most peas will need a trellis to climb. You can place the container against a wooden trellis or fence, or build your own.