When to Plant Sweet Pea Seeds
In temperate regions, where frosts occur, sow Sweet Pea seeds in late Winter or early Spring, just as soon as the soil is able to be worked - don't wait until the threat of frost has passed. In milder climates that don't experience a frost, sow seeds in late Fall, for early Spring blooms.
Where to Plant Sweet Pea Seeds
Sweet Peas require fertile, well-drained soil in order to thrive. 6 weeks before planting, dig a trench and re-fill with well-decomposed compost or manure where you will sow your seeds. Sweet Peas prefer Full Sun conditions, but also cool, moist, well-draining soil.
How to Plant Sweet Pea Seeds
Sweet Pea seeds require scarification prior to planting. This is a simple process that involves nicking the seeds with a knife or rubbing them with sandpaper or a file. Learn more about the importance of scarification here.
Before planting, you must soak Sweet Pea seeds for 24 hours to encourage germination. Learn more about here.
Soak your seeds overnight to soften that hard exterior of Sweet Pea seeds, or use a sharp knife to nick the exterior shell to help increase your chances for germination. Make holes in the trench with a pencil, and drop your seeds into the hole. Press down on the soil in order to cover. Germination will take place in 7-15 days.
How to Care for Sweet Peas
As Sweet Pea seedlings emerge, continue to fill the trench with additional soil. Ensure that soil remains adequately moist. If additional fertilizer is needed, ensure that you select varieties that feature a higher phosphorus content, as nitrogen heavy fertilizers will suppress flowering and encourage green growth. Deadheading spent flowers will encourage additional blooms. Also ensure to provide supports, such as trellises, as Sweet Peas are noted climbers. At approximately, 4 inches high, pinch off the middle-growing tip to encourage a sturdier development for your Sweet Peas as they mature. Once established, mulching will help keep your Sweet Pea roots cool, however, they will tend to fade once temperatures get to 65°F or higher.