How to Grow and Harvest Sugar Snap Peas

Why my family loves growing and harvesting sugar snap peas:
  • Easy to grow
  • They are Frost Tolerantsugar_snap_peas2
  • They are Beautiful plant
  • My kids love Sugar Snap Peas
  • Peas grow fast and you can harvest them within 6-8 weeks after planting
  • Fresh and organic when they come from your back yard
  • Healthy snack for the whole family
  • Easy to add to any meal
  • Easy to store in the freezer for longer use
  • Easy for the kids to plant the seeds
  • They climb nicely up trellis or twine
  • They grow vertical, so they don’t need a lot of space

sugar snap peas

Sugar snap peas is the easiest and tastiest to grow!

Growing Sugar Snap Peas

Starting from Seed

It’s not recommended that you try to start seedlings for later transplant, because of the delicate root system. Since peas are frost tolerant planting directly in the ground earlier in the season is recommended, there is usually no need to start your seed indoors.IMG_2892

As soon as the ground is warm enough to dig, then you can plant. This will usually be 4 to 6 weeks before your areas last frost date. The only downside to such early planting is that the seeds can be prone to rotting, but by using the sawdust and sand this also can be avoided. Using the Mittleider method allows you to have a longer growing season, than your neighbors. It is preferred to use an in the garden green house when trying to start your seeds early. Buy the Mittleider Course book here

IMG_3293Prepare your soil by tilling thoroughly. Once you have tilled your grow bed, you will need to level it to see if you need to add more soil(sawdust and sand). After you have a leveled the grow bed you can add your pre plant fertilizer and weekly feed. You can make your own or buy it pre mixed at This is an organic fertilizer that you can find how to make it in the Mittleider gardening course book. Follow the book on how much fertilizer to put in your garden. Once you have mixed the pre plant and weekly feed into your garden, re-level your grow bed. You will need to install your ground wire for your Baler twine and water system. After your grow bed is ready to plant your seed, draw a line with a stick 1″ away from where your ground wire would be, creating a trench 1/2″ to 1″ deep. Space the seeds 2″ apart and cover with your soil mix. Water generously to allow the peas to germinate.

At this point is when I installed my baler twine to the lower and upper wires to allow more space for the peas to grow up, you will still need to assist your peas. I have realized that most animals do NOT like to go through the baler twine, including squirrels! I had a huge issue with squirrel stealing my seeds before they even poke through the soil. The baler twine was a huge deterrent. But if you want to wait to install the baler twine, I would recommend you put burlap on top of your seed to keep animals out. Burlap is also used to insure your seeds stay most, and for smaller seed don’t wash away during watering

After the seeds start to poke through the soil you will start your weekly feed. Once a week apply weekly feed an inch away from the base and water in. I usually do this before my automatic water system goes off. According to the Mittleider Course book, you will need to measure out the weekly feed. You do this by measuring the linear feet of your garden. 1 foot equals 1/2 oz of weekly feed, so if you have 12′ of peas it will be 6oz of fertilizer.IMG_3705

Wrapping your baling twine around the peas not wrapping your peas around the baling twine will help reduce your chances of breaking the growing tips. This is very important to make sure your peas have support to allow them to produce more peas and resist against diseases. Even though sugar snap peas are pretty much disease resistant, but you will need to make sure your peas have enough breathing room between each plant to resist against powdery mildew.IMG_3292

Vining peas can be planted closer together than bushing peas also vining peas have a longer growing season and produce more peas! At my work, we always joke around about not working harder, just smarter. Sugar snap peas are definitely working smarter, not harder.

IMG_3685When Harvesting:

Usually Sugar Snap Peas can start harvesting in 66-72 days after planting the seeds. When the peas reach about 3″ long, it is time to harvest. Using your hand as a measuring guide will help you harvest your peas faster. Harvesting young peas will allow you to eat the shell and pods, if you wait to long the shells become tough and are no longer that sweet, fresh, snappy snack you wanted. The more often you harvest the more the plant produces. Cut the pea off at the top, right under the leafs to stimulate the plant to grow more peas.  (Check out our video below)

Here are some of the things I bought to do this gardening project. This baling twine is thick and will last you many years, it also will handle heavy plants like tomatoes without choking them.



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