I love gardening in autumn, the temperatures are lower and there is usually enough rain about so you don’t have to be constantly watering newly planted seedlings and seeds. It is my favourite time of the year in the vegetable garden, lots happening but not as frenetic as spring and not as demanding as summer.
At this time of year I am still putting in successive plantings of mixed lettuce, rocket, coriander, carrot and beetroot.
But I am also starting to plant snow peas, again successively, so about 10-15 snow pea seeds every couple of weeks.
My preparation for snow peas is simple;
I make sure I find a different spot from where I grew the snow peas last spring or where I have had my beans growing this summer.
I then add well-rotted animal manure (cow or sheep not poultry is too rich) in generous amounts to the ground and dig it over with a fork.
Rake over to develop a good tilth (nice and crumbly).
Now snow peas need something to grow on and I find the easiest support frame is two steel post hammered securely in the ground with a piece of mesh tied to them. Make sure the mesh is almost touching the soil so the young plants can reach support at an early age.
Sow your seeds and water in well.
Do not water again until the seedlings emerge as watering during germination can cause the seed to rot.
Once they have germinated apply seasol at ½ strength twice a week for two weeks, then powerfeed at ½ strength once a week for 6 weeks.
After this they will only need a watering when conditions are dry, i.e. no rain for a week.
By the end of autumn you will be picking enough snow peas for a couple of feeds a week.
Don’t forget 10 -15 seeds every couple of weeks till early spring for continual production all through winter.
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