Sunday, May 6, 2012


Dwarf Grey Sugar Pea flowers

Welcome to my garden!

I do not lay claim to any great expertise. This is only my second year attempting to garden in Middle Tennessee (zone 7a) on a piece of land that is mostly clay.

I have made a lot of mistakes. I'm sure I'll make many more.

I hope this blog will be both instructive ("Here's what I did. Don't make that same foolhardy mistake!") and inspiring ("If I can get these results on a windswept clay hilltop, imagine what you could achieve in your own garden!") begin with the peas!

I planted my Dwarf Grey Sugar Pea seeds from High Mowing in mid-March in a base of clay with mushroom compost and pine fines worked into the soil. Not the ideal seed-starting medium you'll find recommended in gardening books.

And yet, they grew splendidly through conditions that whipsawed between wet and dry, hot and cold.

Frugalista Gardener has a wonderful post on these peas - their edibility, their beauty, how to cook them and how to save the seeds so that you can have a self-sustaining garden.

I don't think I can add much to what she has written, except to say that these peas will also grow and apparently flourish even without a trellis.

(Why didn't I just build a trellis and grow pole peas? Many reasons, but chiefly the fact that I excel at the twin skills of research and procrastination. I spent hours researching the topic online, couldn't decide what would be the best and most effective trellis to build and so ultimately settled for dwarf peas that were advertised as not need a trellis at all.)

Of course without a trellis, two of my pea rows have comingled. I'm not sure how I'll ever find the peas in the middle...