The Year of the Sweet Pea

Credit: courtesy National Garden Bureau

The NGB points out that with the growing ­interest in edible flowers, it is very important to be specific with the name. Garden peas (Pisum sativum) such as English peas, podded peas and snow peas are edible, but sweet peas (Lathyrus odoratus) are ­poisonous – especially the flowers and seeds.

Lovely in the garden – and a few stems in a vase create a charming country-style bouquet – climbing sweet peas also make great container plants. Instead of sowing one or two seeds at the centre of the container, make a circle of seeds 2 or 3 cm (1 in.) in from the rim of the pot. It’s easiest to insert the support first and then sow the seeds around it.

For larger containers, tomato cages are perfect supports.

For more information: