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Trellis vs diverse density

I’m happy for you to call me lazy! I personally think that I am just trying to minimize the amount of work to the necessary so that I can fit in more projects (and freetime) 🙂

One of our favourite (because dark purple) pea varieties, Blauwschokker

And also, I remained curious about why we human beings put in so so much time and energy to make things (in this case veggie garden, more specific peas) work, that managed to thrive for millions of years without any human interference.

So how come, that every year I have to sweat over getting trellises set up for my peas (and for the autumn sowing broadbeans, too)? It’s a lot of work to clear the area first, install the trellis and then bind everything up again after the first storm rips off all peas?

The first year I started with the two most (I thought) obvious experiments: 1) Can’t they just grow and produce without a trellis, creeping on the ground & 2) Maybe the can climb up trees?

Both attempts failed. They are too fragile and get tangled on the ground and harvesting meant destroying them. Also, their tiny ‘arms’ are not made to hold on to poles or trees.

Little Miss Sunshine strolling the fields and harvesting peas

Because our little one loves sugarsnaps and peas I installed trellises again the next year and utilized the fences around the veggie garden to ensure a harvest. Last autumn, I started an experiment outside of the veggie garden and so far it has worked brilliantly!

In summary I combined 5 chores in one go:

  1. sowing

  2. mulching

  3. trellis

  4. wind protection

  5. succession planting

All it needed was throughing the seeds accross the test-patches. For the bigger one I had choosen peas and broadbeans, for the smaller one peas and arugula. Those were then covered with mulch. For the bigger one donkey manure which I had to spread anyway, for the other just some leaves.

The ‘green mess’

Came spring, everything started to emerge and first I was frightened that I had wasted seeds because it was so dense that every neighbour walking by was ready to tell me that I need to ‘cut down this green mess’. Very soon it turned into a blooming pea-paradise though!

Even the last storm (which had caused quite some damage) had no effect on these patches at all. While the trellised peas in the veggie garden had to be rescued again.

I can’t help but thinking that this is the way nature intended it to be (or at least very close to that)… Plus I like to see peas hanging from our trees:

By now all peas (both for our bellies as well as for seeds) have been harvested now and I am super excited for the next growing season, i.e. just throwing them onto the ground together with some other seeds and consider my work done 🙂

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