What are Pea Shoots?
Pea shoots are primarily grown from the pea species Pisum sativum, specifically of the cultivar groups arvense, saccharatu or macrocarpon, referred to as field pea, snow pea or sugar snap pea.
It is important to avoid using other pea species especially coming from the Genus Lathyrus, which may include Lathyrus sativus, L. cicera and L. clymenum. These types contain a toxin called lathyrogen causing a condition called lathyrism with side-effects that may include paralysis, hyperesthesia, and paresthesia when the peas or their shoots are consumed for prolonged periods.
Pea greens are produced by soaking and sprouting the dried green peas and placing them on a tray of soil between 1-2 inches or 2-5 cm deep. The slightly sprouted peas are covered to provide a dark space for the initial sprouting phase. When the sprouts hit the top of the lid, it is removed and the tray is then placed in sunlight or under full spectrum lighting to green and grow into a healthy hedge of leafy greens.
Pea shoots are great for small spaces – they grow fast, taste delicious and are rich in Vitamin C, A and protein. Easy to grow, they’re also perfect to try if you’re starting out. Seeing (and eating!) the fruits of your labour in just in two or three weeks is rewarding and motivating.
Plus, pea shoots are a good choice for a shady spaces or to grow inside over winter – just sow a stray or two and keep near a bright window.
- 1 lbs of green peas/whole at the Middle Eastern market
- soak with water and hydro peroxide(3%), 1tsp, rinse
- soak for 24 hours to help the germination, 2 hot and 3 cold water
- 2 cups pea shoots + 4 cups water for a 10×20 tray.
- Pea shoots nearly double in size
Cover with compost – about the thickness of a pea. Water the surface lightly again.