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How To Grow Peas in Egg Cartons

By Joshua Duvauchelle ; Updated September 21, 2017

Peas are a sweet and tasty addition to your favorite salad or cooked entree, and their vertical nature makes them the ideal vegetable candidate for a small backyard garden. Get a head start on the spring growing season by starting the peas indoors in an egg carton when it's still cold outside. This process has many benefits: Egg cartons are just the right size to start seeds; it gives the carton a second life; and it lets you start your plants several weeks earlier than usual.

Fill each egg socket in the egg carton with soilless potting mix. Fill each socket to its brim, and mound the potting mix in the middle of the socket so that the center is higher than the edges. This ensures proper air flow between all of the future pea seedlings.

Sink a pea seed into the middle of each little mound. Bury the seed 1 inch below the surface of the mound, and cover with the soilless potting mix.

Water the seeds. Fill a plastic spray bottle with water and mist all of the mounds of potting mix. Repeat twice a day or as needed to keep the soil perpetually moist. The peas will germinate within 10 to 14 days.

Transplant the peas outside once they have reached a height of 1 1/2 to 3 inches. When planting outdoors, transplant each seedling so that it is 10 inches from the adjacent pea plant. If you're growing more than one row of peas, separate the rows by 2 feet.


Things You Will Need

  • Egg carton
  • Soilless potting mix
  • Pea seeds
  • Spray bottle
  • Water


  • Peas are a cold-season vegetable and can be planted as soon as the last frost date passes for your area. Start the peas in the egg carton 2 to 3 weeks before this date so they're ready to be transplanted as soon as it's warm enough outside. The Farmers' Almanac has a complete list of average frost dates by U.S. state.


  • Do not fertilize the germinating pea seedlings, as they are very sensitive and easily burned by any sort of fertilizer application when its applied within the small confines of an egg carton. If your soil is nutrient deficient, fertilize with a standard vegetable garden fertilizer when the seedlings are transplanted outdoors.

About the Author


Joshua Duvauchelle is a certified personal trainer and health journalist, relationships expert and gardening specialist. His articles and advice have appeared in dozens of magazines, including exercise workouts in Shape, relationship guides for Alive and lifestyle tips for Lifehacker. In his spare time, he enjoys yoga and urban patio gardening.