View Full Version : Yet another gardening question

Rick Potter
11-14-2011, 12:42 PM
Short and quick.....how do you know when to pick peas?

Rick Potter

Belinda Williamson
11-14-2011, 4:17 PM
When they yell "I'm ready"? Or maybe when you see the Jolly Green Giant in your pea patch? :D

Seriously, what kind of peas?

ray hampton
11-14-2011, 6:54 PM
the time is different for each type , when do we pick snow peas ?

Larry Frank
11-14-2011, 7:47 PM
I try to pick them before the rabbits pick them.

Seriously, you can tell from the pod how big the peas are and pick them before they get too big.

Jim Koepke
11-14-2011, 9:33 PM
I always pick them in the morning. It seems they are sweetest then.


Gary Hodgin
11-14-2011, 10:05 PM
When they look right, shell a couple and see how they look.

Ryan Mooney
11-15-2011, 12:19 AM
When they are delicious. Once they get old they become less delicious (to me) which means I missed the proper picking time. In practice this means sometime between when the first tendrils form (mmm pea tendril salad!), when the baby pods get big enough to eat without it being a waste to when the pods are just barely full and I can strip the baby peas out.

OTOH you never said what you were doing with them (or as Belinda noted what kind of peas). If you want dried peas I leave them there until the pods are pretty much dry but haven't yet exploded all over the ground. When you go out and all the pods are empty you know you've waited a day to long (same happens to me with dry beans).

Generally if it tastes good - thats about the right time :D

Rick Constantine
11-15-2011, 4:43 PM
In general, the sole objective of a plant is to produce "viable" seeds (those which can germinate). Consequently, by picking the peas early, you only spur the plant to produce more peas. Therefore, I like to pick snowpeas when they are "tender" as I don't like them "tough". As far as other types of peas that you want to be "firm", simply open up a pod and see what you think! Additionally, although I have grown snowpeas in the garden "proper" (i.e. in the ground), I've found that I really like growing snowpeas in containers (e.g. terra cotta pots, fiberglass planters (http://www.newprocontainers.com/fiberglass-planters), etc.) as, by doing so, one can more easily "manipulate" growing conditions such as sunlight, shade, etc.

Rick Potter
11-20-2011, 8:42 PM
Sorry to take so long folks.

I finally found the label for the peas. They are "Sugar Snap" pea plants. They are planted in the ground, and have some pea pods on them about 2" long. She ate one raw, and said it was hard and didn't taste good.

Do you eat them raw? If not, what is the best way to cook them??

By now you can possibly induce that we are not "gardeners", by any stretch of the imagination. Maybe that's why I ask so many questions that to many of you must seem pretty stupid.

Rick Potter

Bill Bukovec
11-20-2011, 9:30 PM
In Minnesota, we pick them in January.

Where do you think frozen vegetables come from? ;-)

Seriously, some peas are meant to be eaten pod and all.

Usually the pea pods are picked when the pods are 2 - 3 inches long and still flat.

I use these in stir fry with flank steak and cashews.

If you let the pods get too mature, they don't taste very good.

How long were the pods on the plant before you picked them?

Experience will be the best teacher.

Pick and eat some at various stages.

Ryan Mooney
11-20-2011, 10:04 PM
Sugar snaps are usually best pretty young pod and all when the peas inside have barely formed - or (my preference) when they haven't really formed at all. As you've noted once they start getting hard + peas they don't taste so good.

You can:
- eat them raw in a salad
- lightly stir fry them (add near the end of a stir fry so they are ~mostly raw)
those are my favorite ways anyway, some folks also steam them but that takes a light hand and seems a waste imho.

If they start getting very big at all you'll want to "string" them - there will be "strings" on the seams between the two sides that will strip right off if you pull the stem sideways.