An annual plant I love to grow in my mountain garden is the sweet pea. I love the fragrance, and it appreciates our cool summers, flowering all season long, often attracting hummingbirds.
Probably again due to our cool summers, I find that they don’t tend to bloom very early in the summer unless they are started inside.
I usually start mine in mid-late March, growing them in a pot, which I will then put outside on my porch, twining it up the post for a nice fragrant welcome home.
|My welcome home....|
This year, I forgot to nick the seed coats (which aids in germination). I was dismayed to see only ONE pea germinate out of two pots. Doh!
|Doh! Only one seed germinated because I forgot to nick the seeds.|
I quickly got more seed out and nicked them with a fingernail clipper before replanting. I hope to soon see many more emerge from the soil, and hope they'll catch up, even though they're about three weeks behind.
|Nick sweet pea seeds with a fingernail clipper to help with germination|
I pinch off all the old flowers. However, as August arrives, I let some go to seed, so I can save some for the following year. Wait until the “peas” are completely brown and starting to split open before harvesting. The seeds should be dry and dark brown.
A note of caution – sweet peas are poisonous, so never eat them, and teach your kids to never eat them.