Sweet Pea Advice From Montana!

calpat(zone9ab No.Ca.)April 9, 2007

Today recceived a short letter from Sister in Montana with a newspaper clipping called "Dirty Fingernails" by 2 mastergardeners in that area. It includes exstensive advice & info. for growing sweetpeas! Not much that I hadn't read before, but an explanation of the "why's".

"s.p.'s are one of the kinds of seeds with an extremely hard coating to it, it's hard for the water to get into the seed and start the germination process. You can sand the seed with an emory board, nick it with clippers or soaking it, so that water can penetrate that coating, just being careful not to damage that coating where the sprout will appear". Now that I know why I'm suppose to do it, I'll try again. However, this season I did start the seed in a flat indoors and they did sprout! So far, so good! I'm assuming that this "reason" applies to any tough seed coating.

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The first I heard about nicking seeds was over on the Ponds forum when folks were talking about starting lotus from seed (some people even drill them! LOL). Very nifty! I went ahead and soaked my sweet peas this year, as per seed packet instructions. Starting them wasn't so hard. Since then, it's been getting them to get growing outside. Except for the ones in pots, though. :)

I'd love to visit Montana some day, but DH wouldn't want to leave there! :D


    Bookmark   April 10, 2007 at 11:49AM
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Yeah, that'd be a dangerous thing, terrible growing season!
That's terrific info for you Pat and now with the green house you should have the key to growing sweet peas:) I looked these up when you started talking about them, I see the lure.... I'm looking forward to pics when you get them really growing and they flower one day.

    Bookmark   April 10, 2007 at 2:02PM
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calpat(zone9ab No.Ca.)

I so appreciate all the information I'm given or directed to, but sometimes instructions tell you to do something, but they don't say WHY! I recall when I asked my Mom a question I got "because I said so", I really hated it then & I still do! I just got a nice e-mail from the 2 ladies that wrote the article, inviting anyone to write to them, if not for gardening advice, then just to say hello! You're so right, the growing season up there is really short,I mean it's like about 2, possibly 3 months. My sis had all her gardens wiped out last Nov. from rains that caused a earth dam to break up stream from her. But I think little by little she's getting the mess cleared away and will start again!

    Bookmark   April 10, 2007 at 3:51PM
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CA Kate

I first learned to do this growing Nasturtiums.... which also have a hard seed.

    Bookmark   April 10, 2007 at 8:47PM
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My sweet pea blooms are almost open, Pat! And Mom reports that hers are in full bloom! I can't wait to smell them! Oooo, I'm so excited. LOL

I think this cool, wet weather makes them happy. More warm weather on the way, but...they can't back out on me now! LOL


    Bookmark   May 4, 2007 at 9:11AM
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One of them is now open, but...no scent. LOL It may not seem like it, but I'm patient. I'm sure the 2nd one will smell great, especially when the weather warms up over the next few days. :)

Oh, but the bloom is GORGEOUS! Palest pink outside fading to yellow inside. Yum!


    Bookmark   May 4, 2007 at 7:07PM
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