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Cold Hardy Peanuts

 
pollinator
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Just thought I would share the results of my peanut experiment for anyone in the cold north interested in growing peanuts. Last spring I planted Tennessee red Valencia from SESE, as well as some unnamed store peanuts. They grew really well and produced lots of peanuts, but most remarkably many of the plant crowns survived the winter. When I dug up the peanuts in the fall I shoved the crowns directly back into the soil and forgot about them. Well this spring when I returned they were alive and well. The actual crowns not new plant seedlings. They have survived several frosts, a hard freeze of 29, and a full night at 32 with no protection. Plants show no sign of damage. This is zone five, but this year our lowest low was -26 in January. Only the red Valencia overwintered.
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Location: Haida Gwaii, British Columbia (7b)
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This is awesome! This would make an awesome oil-crop. I’d love to grow some peanuts up here! I’ll see if i can find some red valencia. Thanks for sharing.
 
garden master
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Location: Maine, zone 5
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I second that that is awesome Dan!  I put it on my want list to buy seeds for next year.  Thank you for the cool tip.  I've never grown peanuts before this year and I didn't realize they were perennial.
 
pollinator
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That's really interesting!  It will be fun to see how they do for you this year, so please keep us updated!
 
Greg Martin
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Location: Maine, zone 5
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This year I'm trialing this one from Fruition Seeds:

Organic Northern Hardy Valencia Peanut HEIRLOOM Yes you heard it right, a northern hardy peanut!

Originally from the Georgia (where they're called Goober Peas), this fantastic variety has been grown and selected for over a decade in Northern Michigan before we started selecting it in the Finger Lakes of New York.

Peanuts grow as tall and wide as bush beans, making them suitable for small gardens, even large containers. Sow them when you sow your bush beans, after the last frost; early June is average for us. Well-drained, fertile soil with the additional warmth of a layer of row cover yields the most abundant peanuts. Pay close attention to their gorgeous canary yellow flowers: blossoming within a few inches of the ground, each pollinated flower will grow a purple stem (called a peduncle or peg) down into the soil where it forms each peanut beneath the earth. At the end of the season, your peanut stems will have 20+ purple peduncles connecting your peanuts to each plant! Peanuts continue maturing all season long so we harvest at first frost by forking around each plant gently and lifting the peanuts out of the soil still attached to the plant.

The pods with 4 and 5 peanuts we'll dry & cure for our seed stock; all the other peanuts we boil or roast fresh and enjoy right away. Our favorite is to boil them in salty beer!

Check out our fun & informative videos more more harvest and curing details.

Regional adaptation is important for every seed to thrive, but none perhaps so much as peanuts. We are truly proud of and grateful to share these exceptionally well adapted seeds for you to enjoy!

You'll notice your packet will be quite large and bulky: we send your peanuts in their shell to preserve each seed's freshness. Remove them from the shell just before you plant them, taking care to not knick the protective black skin.

110 days to maturity

Arachis hypogaea

Fruitiion's web page  Looks like they still have them available if anyone is curious about their strain.  Also they have some videos on this page.

I'll try and overwinter the crowns too thanks to your post Dan!
 
gardener
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Location: mountains of Tennessee
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Never tried replanting the crowns. Thanks for the tip. Have been growing the TN Red Valencias for several years now. Usually leave a few unharvested in fall so they sprout the following spring. Works well but replanting the crowns seems even better.

 
pollinator
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Location: Denmark 57N
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What sort of summer temperatures do you have? I would love to grow peanuts I have long enough frost free but not sure about heat days. Do they have a minimum needed temperature in the summer like rice?
 
Mike Barkley
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Not sure about the summer temps required. We average 85-95 F during the hottest part. Zone 7.
 
Skandi Rogers
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Google is telling me growth stops at/below 15C (59F)so another no go here then (also zone 7) 70F would be the highest I can expect and only for a couple of hours a week in July and August.
 
pollinator
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I'll throw my experience in the ring. Skandi Rogers and Simon Gooder, this may well reflect your expected experiences should you try these out. I grew some of the Fruition Seeds cold hardy red valencia peanuts two years ago in a quest to find the legume to complete my oil seed 3 sisters (along with sunflower and oil seed pumpkin). I live in the coastal northwest where we might only have 5 or 6 frosty nights a year, winter temps tend to hang around the low 50s and high 40s with a good bit of rain. The problem I found was that our summer temps rarely hit 70 and we have many a June-uary or Faugust day where it barely scrapes it's way into the 60s. The seeds germinated well enough but then basically failed to thrive, never really got more than maybe 5 or 6 inches tall, never flowered and obviously never formed any seeds. They just sort of stagnated at the point sort of between being a seedling and really maturing into a plant. I think they need a decent bit of heat to do their thing in the summer. These seem great for a short but hot summer, didn't do anything for me with a sort of long but cool summer.
One thing that I thought about at the time was that they might do better in a raised bed with lighter soil that would heat up better. My yard is heavy and damp soil and I don't often leave any of it bare so it stays relatively cool all year long. Cherry tomatoes and peppers do much better for us in a raised bet with lighter potting type soil, and of course a greenhouse cover of some kind takes it up a whole other notch.
 
Dan Allen
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Yeah, I do get hot summers here, for about two months we're in the high 80s to mid 90s. July averages 82/56, August 80/55. But they seem to grow fairly vigorously in the early spring in spite of frost. They probably need the heat to produce peanuts.
 
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