Snow peas and snap peas

weedlady(Central OH 6)March 25, 2012

Had a sudden "DUH!" moment recently when I realized from something I read that these are the SAME THING--just depends on when you choose to pick them! I had been stressing out about which variety to plant for the flat pods(snow peas) to use in stir-frys, and which to plant for the fat-podded snaps when the little light bulb went on in my head.

Anyone else in the same "stupid boat" as me? LOL

I love the shelling types, but hate the time-consuming chore of shelling and the waste of pitching the pods (of course, they are not a total waste as they go into the compost!) so I prefer the snaps--and "graze" on them a lot while working in the garden.

Anyway, ended up planting 3 different varieties of the edible-podded kind and a double row of Green Arrow as well.

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Although young sugar snaps(Pisum sativum var. macrocarpon) can be treated like snow peas(Pisum sativum var. saccharatum), they are in fact different. Before the snaps fill out, they are similar to snows, but snow peas retain their flat growth habit, and are generally considered less sweet.

    Bookmark   March 25, 2012 at 3:06PM
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Concur: Snap peas are more akin to shelling peas, just fleshy edible pods. About the same growing conditions. Snow peas, remain flat, peas are hard, smooth and round. Much less tolerant of heat than snap or shelling peas.

    Bookmark   March 25, 2012 at 3:54PM
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weedlady(Central OH 6)

Many thanks for the input. So, I looked at the seeds I have. I have planted Oregon Giant Sugar Pod, Cascadia Snap, and Dwarf Gray Sugar peas. For my shelling peas I have planted Green Arrow. I have grown those before & like them a lot.
The Dwarf Gray seed is smaller & smooth, so thanks to farmerdill I know that will be the flat-podded snow pea.

Last year I planted some Blondie peas in a 15" high raised bed along a 4' high section of fence for support. Did not care much for their flavor though (seemed starchy), and also, since they grew to 4 1/2 feet, if they had not flopped over the top of the 4' fencing they would have been out of my reach as I am barely over 5' tall myself!

I also grew Sugar Lace II, which was interesting since it is "leafless" (not entirely, but lots of tendrils!) but did not find it to be as flavorful as Carouby, the other one I grew. So, trying a few different ones this year in addition to going back to some shelling peas. I prefer all peas that do not grow over 30-36"; I like to support them with brush trimmings.

Thanks again for the responses!

    Bookmark   March 26, 2012 at 12:49PM
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