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How to Grow Split Peas

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Split peas are made when regular peas, such as English peas, green peas and lentils are grown and dried. The peas are shelled, skinned and left out for drying. Once they are completely dry, the peas begin to split in half naturally along a center line. They can also be split mechanically to speed things up. After the peas have been naturally or mechanically split, they are packaged and sold as split peas, which are used in soups, stews and other recipes.

Plant your peas in late winter or early spring when the temperatures are still cool. The plants should receive full sunlight for at least six hours every day.

Til at least the top 6 inches of the soil to loosen the dirt. Remove any large rocks, sticks or other debris. Add 2 to 3 inches of organic compost into the soil to provide the peas with enough nitrogen to become established. Peas will not need additional fertilizer.

Use a hoe to make 2-inch deep rows. Drag the corner of the hoe down the garden in a straight line to make a small trench. Rows should be 18 to 24 inches apart.

Drop 3 to 4 seeds together in groups into the rows. Place the groups of seed at least 1 inch apart. Lightly cover the peas with native soil to fill the rows slightly higher than the surrounding ground.

Apply 1 to 2 inches of water on the growing peas every week.

Harvest the peas every few days when they begin to get full and swollen. Harvesting usually occurs 45 to 60 days after the pea plants have emerged.

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