I do like to grow Heirloom Vegetables the reasons being that some of the old varieties taste so much better than the modern ones and also these old varieties are open pollinated. By open pollinated I mean that they have not been genetically enhanced in anyway and that you can collect their seed and know it will be true to the parent plant.
This season I am trying a new heirloom variety that I have not grown before. They are called Telephone and are a climbing shelling pea. They can reach the height of 6 foot or 2meters and have long pods with sweet fat peas as many as 8 in a pod. An Old English variety released in 1878. They mature in 70-78 days.
You can plant peas direct into the soil but I prefer to start them off in seed trays and when large enough move out of my greenhouse and into a sheltered part of the garden when they can harden off for a couple or so weeks. I'm planting these in winter so that I can harvest early spring.
Prepare your soil before planting using either good compost or well rotted manure, provide some support for these babies, I have made a wigwam out of 6ft poles to which I will wrap around some chicken wire for the peas to grab hold of. If birds are a problem then cover with some netting and don't forget those pesky slugs but do use only animal friendly biodegradable pellets.
Lets hope these peas do please me!
Did you know that legumes produce their own nitrogen? What does that mean for us gardeners? It means that you do not have to fertilise once planted, but you do have to keep them well watered but not waterlogged!