A few weeks ago, I declared my second planting of shell peas a failure. And true to form, Mother Nature wasted no time in letting me know how wrong I was. Not a day after publishing the column, I went to my garden to find flowers all over the plants, which had grown even taller and lusher.
Perhaps I spoke too soon?
With many days in the 50s and 60s, some rain, and nights that haven’t been too cold, those shell peas have kept growing. The stems are well formed, perhaps even sturdier than the spring planting I did. They are covered in leaves and so many flowers. I’ve even spotted a handful of peapods (without developed peas) on the branches.
Perhaps we might have a second pea harvest after all?
I have been watching the weather with pointed interest. While peas can weather a light frost, I’ve read that a hard frost might not be so good for them — causing deformed pods and the death of flowers.
What exactly is a hard frost? I turned to the Old Farmer’s Almanac for help answering that question. “A hard freeze is a period of at least four consecutive hours of air temperatures that are below 28 degrees Fahrenheit,” according to the Almanac.
The National Weather Service predicts that Saturday night might fall to 31 degrees Fahrenheit, but otherwise we’ll have highs in the 50s and lows in the 40s for the next few days as well as more rain.
Sarah Walker Caron
Sarah Walker Caron is the senior editor, features, for the Bangor Daily News and the editor of Bangor Metro magazine. She’s the author of “Classic Diners of Maine,” and five cookbooks including “Easy...
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