Two of our favorite winter vegetables are peas and carrots. Both enjoy cool weather and are easy to grow and seldom bothered by pests. Plant in December through the end of January. Peas and carrots are fairly cold-hardy — protect tender new growth with a covering of loose hay. Pea flowers may be injured by heavy frosts, but plants will recover from temperatures as low as 20 degrees. Carrot tops will go limp under a heavy frost — but spring right back as the sun warms them.
In the south, peas are often called English, garden, or green peas to distinguish them from southern peas. Peas come in a wide variety of types and growth habits. Some grow low and bushy; others climb to six feet or more. A wire fence or string trellis encourages upward growth and makes picking easy. We use lightweight nylon net with 7-inch squares hung on a frame of metal conduit and PVC pipe connectors. Plant a row either side of the trellis, about six inches apart. As plants grow, guide them to the trellis.
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