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Peas not germinating

Pam285Pam285 HullPosts: 54
Every year I sow peas my crop is nowhere near the size it should be to the amount of seeds I planted. It doesn’t matter whether I grow in the ground or containers. What am I doing wrong?  Should I sow them in individual containers like cauliflower or cabbage seeds and then transplant  appreciate advice. 


  • Hostafan1Hostafan1 Posts: 24,692
    mice LOVE pea seeds
  • SkandiSkandi Northern DenmarkPosts: 749
    I had your issue, my solution was to stop planting too early the soil needs to warm a bit first, and to soak the peas for 24hrs before planting, that way I find I get really good germination whereas by just putting them in the soil I would get 3 plants from a packet!
  • fidgetbonesfidgetbones Posts: 14,204
    I start mine in pots, four seeds to a 7cm pot. Then when they are up, they go in a row and I push the pea sticks in.  You have to protect from mice or they will decimate them.
    You don't stop doing new things because you get old, you get old because you stop doing new things. <3
  • PurplerainPurplerain Posts: 1,052
    I grow them early on a propagator, then move them to a cold frame. They are all grown  in cells and get planted out in April with fleece. I use the Charles Dowding method and it seems to work. Runners are more tender and should not go out until the end of May.
    SW Scotland
  • Pam285Pam285 HullPosts: 54
     thanks everyone. Sounds like I have started too early. Soil is still really cold here in Hull. Have quite a few left so will soak and then pop them in pots in the heated propagator to get them off to a good start. 
  • celcius_kkwcelcius_kkw Posts: 277
    I sow mine (sweet peas) in root trainers after soaking them for 24 hours. I’m getting 80-90% germination rate, I buy mine from Sarah haven. 
  • josusa47josusa47 Posts: 3,001
    "One for the pigeon, one for the crow,
    One to rot, and one to grow".

    How old are the peas you're sowing?  If they're last year's, they may no longer be viable.  As a general rule, the bigger the seed, the shorter the viability.  With big seeds like peas and beans, I soak them in water overnight, then drain them and rinse them in fresh water twice a day, until they start sprouting, then sow them singly in paper pots.  I plant them out, pots and all, when they're about 4" tall.  This way, I don't waste time on non-viable seed.
  • nick615nick615 Posts: 196

    From the various replies it seems success is a matter of luck?  I always favour Hurst Greenshaft and, at the end of each season, I gather all the brown pods that are inedible and put the seed from them on to a tray which then sits on the floor of the airing cupboard to dry them out thoroughly.  Worried that there may be something wrong with them, I always include one packet of new seed with the following year's order.

    When the time comes I sprinkle the new seed along my drill, normally about 4-5 inches wide, and follow them with a few handfuls of chicken manure pellets that most crops seem to like.  I then spread all the previous year's saved seed along as well, cover the whole lot up, install my roll of plastic covered border fencing for them to climb up - and sit back and wait.  Something looking like a hedge materialises but I don't seem to suffer like some do.

  • Jason-3Jason-3 Posts: 334

    It wouldn't iimagine it would be warm enough to germinate peas in the ground in the North as yet. If you have the space try them for a week on a warm window sill or near but not too close to a radiator. Peas need a minumn temp of 15c to germinate. Once they have germinated move them on too somewhere cooler but frost free and they harden off when they are large enoigh
  • FairygirlFairygirl west central ScotlandPosts: 30,274
    Far too early. You'd need to give them protection even sowing just now, and similar to what @Jason-3 is describing.
    Ideally, you'd wait till at least now, protection of some kind, and gradually acclimatise. I sowed some Mange Tout at the end of March last year, in a small growhouse. They went out into large pots once they were a decent enough size - probably end of May. 
    It's a place where beautiful isn't enough of a word....

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