April 10, 2017

Planting Sweet Peas in My Garden

Everyone at the farm is looking forward to gardening season. My outdoor grounds crew has been very productive - removing the burlap surrounding my boxwood shrubs, mulching the tree pits and beds, and now planting our first seeds in the flower garden - sweet peas. The sweet pea, Lathyrus odoratus, is a garden classic - producing beautiful blooms with the most amazing scent. Sweet pea seeds can be sown into small pots of compost in autumn and overwintered in a cold frame, or planted directly into the ground come spring.  

Last week, Ryan planted several sweet pea varieties along the cutting garden fence - this will give us columns of fragrant color this summer. But first, to prepare them for planting, I soaked the seeds using a new technique I learned from a friend. Soaking rehydrates the seeds and softens the hard seed coat, but instead of soaking them in water, I soaked them in homemade buttermilk - I combined a gallon of whole milk with about a half-cup of white vinegar, and then placed a little in each container of sweet pea seeds. I am so excited to see how they grow.

Here are some photos - enjoy.