I've seen it written many places, that chickpeas will overwinter in the Pacific Northwest. I'm going to give it a try.
I'm having trouble finding out how people do this. Even Carol Deppe mentions this in her book Resilient Gardener, but her planting time is in the spring. Some traditional cultures overwinter chickpeas.
Any ideas on planting date? Varieties that might do better than others? Other things I need to consider?
I have overwintered Black Kabuli with some success, in northern California. I find the biggest challenge in the winter to be keeping the plants standing, ensuring good sun and good air circulation. I found that they do not like to be trimmed. Thinning the plants is important, I had trouble with fungal disease. They also need fertile soil, they might be nitrogen fixers but I find them to be pretty fussy.
Awesome. Thanks for the link. I just found it through google books.
Gave it a read last night (well, into the early hours of this morning). There is not much in that article that actually tells me how to plant and grow overwinter chickpeas.
What I got from it was:
In North Africa and West Asia, chickpeas are usually planted in the spring but only if there was enough winter rains to saturate the earth. Spring planting chickpeas make them an unreliable crop as some years there isn't enough rain.
Spring planted chickpeas come ready to harvest at the same time as local grains - thus labour and equipment shortages. Whereas winter grown chickpeas come ready about four weeks earlier when there is plenty of labour and equipment available.
Spring planted chickpeas have almost no weed competition, but winter grown ones need a couple of weedings.
winter grown chickpeas are susceptible to some sort of wilt or disease or something I wasn't paying attention. This could be mitigated by changing the spacing to allow more airflow.
at the time of writing, there were disease resistant winter chickpeas being developed
Most of the article focused on farmers and their response to the idea of growing chickpeas in the winter instead of spring. There was a huge cultural element as in Africa, they want the chickpeas to be large but the overwinter varieties were quite small. In West Asia, it didn't matter so much. Turkey, at the time of the article, was big into increasing chickpea production, however, the increase in production is because of more land being put into production, not an improvement on method.
An interesting read but I don't feel I know much more about how I can grow chickpeas in the winter.
I'm going to treat them like fava beans. Plant them Sep through Dec and hope they don't grow too large this fall. If fava beans are small when the frost hits them, then they die back but the roots keep growing overwinter. I imagine chickpeas might do the same.
Since their climate and soil type(s) is (are) actually very different from yours, you might want to try a fall planting of the spring varieties.
Worst case would be the need for deep winter row covers for a few days or perhaps weeks.
I treat chick peas the same way I treat snow peas in our gardens. I plant them directly with a multi inoculant then I set up the "trellis" system I already mentioned (sticks and twines).
As the plants grow taller, I use a piece of twine, fastened to one end pole and then zig-zag the twine between plants. As they grow, more rows of twine are added (I also use this for our tomato plants).
The result is the plants are held up nicely but able to move with the wind somewhat. I also give 12" between plants, this helps keep diseases from wiping out a whole crop by better air flow and I can harvest pods easier.
They need the same nutrients as snow peas or any pea species for that matter. Their growing needs are also pretty much the same.
Location: Currently in Lake Stevens, WA. Home in Spokane
posted 4 years ago
I have overwintered snow peas (in zone 7).
The technique is to stagger sowing so that the plants get well established before the first frost, which puts them into dormancy. Once the soil warms in the spring, growth starts back up. (This regrowth is also the signal to start your first crop of spring plants.)
Since the plants had several weeks of growth before going dormant, their production should be those same number of weeks before the spring planted rotation. With this technique, you could be getting several crops before your neighbors get their first crop.
I have seen these plants poking their heads out of a few feet of snow...perhaps that's how they got their name.
I would think that other pea varieties might do the same. It only costs a few seeds to experiment. Worst comes to worst, you have added some nitrogen rich organic matter to your soil.
We are planting snow peas, crowder peas and chick peas now. We do a row each week from the second week of September through the second week of November.
Arkansas is one of the "Indian Summer" states so we won't see any true cold until the end of Dec. or the middle of Jan.
If we do get a frost warning, row covers do a very good job for us at keeping everything in good shape.
Here in Lazio 40km NE of Rome Italy, at 420m asl I plant chickpeas (and peas, fava and roveya, or Moca in the local dialect, Pisum sativum ssp arvense) in october around the olives on a north facing slope. Don't seem to have many problems with wilt or any viruses/bacteria/funghi, just the rodents, which are able to pinpoint the mature peas from May onwards. I can harvest in july, but by august they're drier and shuck more easily (buts its still a palaver, and maybe I lose quite a few more). Its a windy site, but the local variety is bush forming, maybe 50-60cm tall, so I don't bother with supports, just plenty of mulch/woodchips.
Anybody have experience with cultivating sesame out there?
I would think of chickpeas more like peas. Fava's get chocolate spot but are pretty tough. Peas need some support and can be delicate at times. Peas can also get powdery mildew pretty bad.
You might think about planning to spray something to prevent fungal issues like Seranade, (a bacterial biofungicide), horsetail tea, or sodium Bicarb. An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.
I have found that cutting back chickpea plants can kill them or severely stunt them, so I am not sure they would respond well after frost damage. Row cover like agrobon might be worth it.
I really wish you the best of luck this season, it is totally worth it when you get to pick the green chickpeas in spring since the can be roasted in the shell like edamame.
Location: Currently in Lake Stevens, WA. Home in Spokane
posted 4 years ago
When do you plant your snow peas?
Most snow peas are listed as 60-70 days.
Ideally, you would want them about half way there before frost puts them to sleep.
Some more, some less. Depending on length/severity of your winters.
You could stagger plantings every week or two until Mother Nature slams the door in your face.
If you've got 30 days of growth before dormancy, then you should get a spring crop about 30 days before normal.
Depending on how they were staggered, and the particular winter, you could be swimming in snow peas very early the next season.
Location: Northeast of Seattle, zone 8: temperate with rainy winters and dry summers.
I posted this thread on Facebook, and somebody commented that they've had bad luck with birds eating all the seeds before they could sprout. Chicken wire laid over the bed helped some, but not 100%. I'm planning to grow mine as seedling then transplant.