How to Grow Sugar Snap Peas & Beans

Overview

Sugar snap peas and beans are generally early-season vegetables that enjoy the cooler springtime temperatures. Sugar snap peas and beans are easy to grow and require little special care other than a trellis or climbing support. These vegetables are highly nutritious and can be eaten raw or cooked and prepared in a wide variety of ways. They grow readily from seeds planted directly outdoors with no pretreatment or special handling. Prepare the planting bed in early spring, as soon as the soil is workable.

Step 1

Erect a trellis or a similar climbing support at the planting site for the plants to grow on. The planting site must have well-draining soil and be in full sunlight.

Step 2

Loosen the soil to a depth of 6 to 12 inches using a pitchfork or rototiller. Remove all grasses, weeds or other debris from the soil bed.

Step 3

Mix into the soil bed some well-rotted, aged manure or organic compost if your soil is nutrient-poor. Mix in some peat moss to help with drainage.

Step 4

Plant the sugar snap pea seeds beside the trellis about 1 inch deep in the soil and spaced about 2 inches apart. If you're planting rows of sugar snap peas, space the rows about 3 feet apart.

Step 5

Water the sugar snap pea seeds lightly and evenly once each day in the morning until the seeds germinate and begin to sprout. After the seedlings emerge, water the pea plants two or three times per week to supplement rainfall. Keep the soil evenly moist to a depth of at least 6 inches.

Step 6

Pull weeds by hand or hoe the weeds shallowly until the bean seedlings sprout. When they sprout, spread a 2-inch-thick layer of organic mulch around the seedlings to retain soil moisture and control weeds.

Step 7

Harvest the peas when they are still very young and just as the seeds begin to form in the pods. For beans, harvest the pods later, when the peas are plump in the pods.

Tips and Warnings

  • Some sugar snap pea seedlings will turn yellowish and not grow sufficiently. If this occurs, the plants need a side-dressing of a high-nitrogen vegetable fertilizer. Spread the fertilizer in a band about 2 inches beside the plants according to the instructions on the label.

Things You'll Need

  • Sugar snap pea seeds
  • Trellis or climbing support
  • Pitchfork or rototiller
  • Aged manure or organic compost (optional)
  • Peat moss (optional)
  • Garden hose
  • Hoe
  • Organic mulch

References

  • Ohio State University Extension: Growing Peas and Snap Beans in the Home Garden

Who Can Help

  • Veggie Gardening Tips: Sugar Snap Peas
Keywords: sugar snap peas, growing beans, planting snap peas

About this Author

Sarah Terry brings 10 years of experience writing novels, business-to-business newsletters, and a plethora of how-to articles. Terry has written articles and publications for a wide range of markets and subject matters, including Medicine & Health, Eli Financial, Dartnell Publications and Eli Journals.