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Sunday, March 2, 2014

Peas Not Germinating Evenly

Q. I have had problems with germination of peas. Placed directly in prepared soil germination has been inconsistent and I had to reseed several times.
Remembering a technique I learned years ago I diluted a quart of tap water with 1/8 teaspoon of laundry ammonia and watered them with that. In 2 days ten germinated and in 3 days almost all came up. Have you ever heard of this technique?
Harrisons peas and trellis. Nice veggies!
 A short disclaimer. This is submitted by someone in Las Vegas who is a very good gardener and this does not represent his question very well! Sorry Harrison! But anyone who can grow bananas here for the past few years is a good gardener. I will post his pictures soon and ask him to submit how he did it.

A. No, I have not and that is pretty amazing! In every instance I can remember I do not remember peas being hard to germinate.
            A technique I use with large seed like corn, peas or beans is to soak the seed in water prior to germination. I will put a small amount of fertilizer in the water as well. I would soak them for 6 to 8 hours before planting.
            This is called “pregerminating” the seed. Using this technique usually cuts off the germination time a day or two in warms soils. I will also do the same thing with garlic cloves before planting. I usually get much faster and more even emergence from the soil.
            Sometimes I think garden soil is too “fluffy” and sometimes seed has a hard time staying wet enough in dry soils for good germination.  Seed germinates better in a “firm” seedbed. Not hard, but firm. After garden soil preparation and if you walk on it, your feet should not sink more than an inch into the soil.

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