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Plant peas in winter?

 
steward & bricolagier
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It's winter here, zone 6, on the a/b edge. The ground is sometimes frozen, sometimes very muddy. The snow will be falling several times a month for the next 4 months or so, but no solid snow cover that lasts more than a few days. Sunny warm weather that will snap cold again after a week or so.

If I planted peas now, would they come up when they are ready to and survive, or will they freeze to death if they come up too early?

:D
 
pollinator
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There's two type of pea seeds wrinkled and smooth, wrinkled seeds will rot before they germinate if sown in cold soil, smooth survive better. The seedlings can take a few frosts but everything likes to eat a pea so whether it will work probably depends on your pest pressure and how wet it is, wet soil with pests.. I wouldn't try it. Dry soil and no pests go for it.
 
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It is quite possible to sow peas until the beginning of November to get them established before the worst of winter. Then, with a little protection over the darkest month, they will arise triumphantly in early spring, when they will continue to develop, giving you fresh peas a month before any sown in spring.
 
pollinator
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I'm in zone 8b and prefer to wait until just a few weeks before my expected last frost to directly sow my English pea seeds into the soil. I agree with a previous commenter that pea seeds will rot if left in wet soil...they need good drainage.
 
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I live in N. California, so this probably wont be helpful for you.  Ideally I can plant peas in late summer early fall and get peas in the fall and spring. And or plant in January.  One time I planted peas very late in the fall.  They grew to about knee high and just stopped growing.  I thought they were goners, but they just sat there and as soon as the weather warmed up a bit they finished growing and we had a great crop of peas.  We have mild winters with lows of mid to low 30s.  I always soak my peas before I plant them to help them sprout.  I wonder if you didn't soak them but just planted them If the cold and wet would cause them to sprout when they are ready, or if they would rot before the weather was right.  Might be worth it to throw a few in and see what happens.  We love peas!   Last year every garden bed had peas in it.  It was wonderful.  this year I didn't get them in last fall.  I planted some recently, but I tore down my garden fence to extend my veggie garden and built two new hugel beets.  This means my chickens spend lots of time in my garden beds.  I don't know if we will get peas this year.  Maybe if I can get the garden done and fence back up in the next week or two I will try again.  Good luck to you.
 
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