Sunday, June 28, 2009

Pass the Peas, Please

I've been picking peas for about a week. This year is the first we've grown peas in quite some time. In fact, I remember very distinctly the last time we grew peas.

We were sitting on the deck out back, and I was shelling peas and talking about what my next car would be. I had always wanted a Volkswagen Beetle but they stopped selling them in the US in 1977. Then for the 1998 model year, they redesigned it and started selling them in the US again. I liked the New Beetle as well as the old classic style.

I was shelling away - it takes an insanely large amount of pea pods to produce an insanely small number of peas - and I jokingly said to Romie, "Hey! I know what you can get me for our anniversary next year! A New Beetle!" He didn't roll his eyes or make some sarcastic remark, he just said, "What color would you want?" We would be celebrating our 25th and I was hoping for a silver Beetle.

At that time, you had to put your name on a waiting list along with a $250 deposit (to show you were serious, I guess) and your car requirements (silver, automatic transmission, leather seats, sun roof, CD player). With silver being the second most requested color (yellow was number one), we were told it could be a year or more before they were able to get one with my specifications. Back then, they were a hot item.

Waiting that long was fine, because I didn't have to have a car right away. But it was just a few short months and my car was here. We picked it up on 9-9-99 and it was an early anniversary present, since our 25th wasn't until August 1, 2000.

And that leads us back to the peas...

When I planted them this spring, it made me remember that last time we grew them and how I got my car - ten years ago. That's a long time to not grow peas and the longest we've ever had any one car. The Beetle is doing fine and I plan to drive it for many more years.

We plan to grow peas for many more years, too.
I'd forgotten just how good fresh peas from the garden really are.


Interesting fact about peas: Peas are one of those cool plants that returns nitrogen to the soil (called nitrogen fixation). They have nodules on their roots that contain bacteria that converts the nitrogen in the air into organic nitrogen in the soil. Beans do this, too.


Lisa at Greenbow said...

Peas are so good right out of the garden. Reading this makes me wish I had a veggie garden.

Janet, The Queen of Seaford said...

fun story. hurray for VWs (mine is a jetta...not as cool as a Beetle) and hurray for homegrown peas.

Gail said...

Today, I wish I had a vegetable garden..hearing about your peas makes me want to pop open a pod! I miss fresh good tasting tomatoes...I am going to have to beg my garden friends for tomatoes! Love the VW story...they are sweet cars. gail

bg_garden said...

I had no idea you were a VW owner! AWESOME!!! LOVE THAT CAR!!!!

Great Post as always Kylee. (((HUGS))) Bren

garden girl said...

Wonderful story Kylee. It's funny how our memories weave together so peas can remind you of the neat story of how you got your bug.

I have fond memories of push-starting a close girlfriend's red '66 bug every time it stalled at a stop light - ah, the good old days!

This is my first year in many growing peas again. Peas grown at home, like tomatoes, are in a class of their own. Yum!

Kylee Baumle said...

Lisa ~ I didn't realize you didn't have a veggie garden, Lisa. Even when I wasn't a "real" gardener, we always put out a veggie garden. It would be really hard for me to imagine life on Our Little Acre without one, no matter how small. Gotta have my beans, beets, and corn!

Janet ~ I really love my Beetle and hope to be driving it for many more years. It has about 90,000 miles on it right now and hopefully I'll be able to put that many more on it.

Gail ~ Peas really do taste best when you can pick 'em and eat 'em right there in the garden. My girls had no idea you could eat them raw like that! Of course, they were surprised at how good they were.

So you don't grow vegetables either? For some reason, that surprises me! You should try growing just one veggie next year, just for fun. :-)

Bren ~ Oh I love my Bug, too! When I got it, and drove up in it the first time when visiting Kara at college, the first thing she said to me was, "Oh Mom, not just any mom can drive a car like that. It's so YOU!" I took that as a high compliment.

Linda ~ Don't you love it when one thing reminds you of something else like that? I mean, really...peas and Beetles just go together, don't they? LOL.
It's been kind of fun growing peas again. I'm sure we'll grow them next year, too. The vines are starting to decline now, with all the hot weather. Everything has its season.

MILLIE said...

Kylee--Isn't it a funny coincidence--this is the first year I've grown peas for a while--it must be close to 10 also..but I don't have a good story to tell. All I know is that I had them in plastic freezer containers and I don't think we've used them for a while--and it was before this house--so gosh that makes it close to 21 years!! LOL
Mine are doing great and my husband helped me shell last night. What a nice guy.

Leigh from Larrapin Garden said...

Great post! I love sugar snap peas but they are challenging for me to grow...seems I never get them out at exactly the right time to get peas before the heat hits.

But the heat is beloved by the Purple Hull Peas that are my all-time favorite pea. Yum! But like you mention, it takes a LOT of peas to get enough to cook! Thanks for this post.

Victoria Williams said...

Nice. Our peas are ready for picking......

Water Damage San Jose, CA said...

My brother and I used to eat pea pods like that out of my grandmas backyard. We thought they were so good!

<3 Linds

Unknown said...

Very cool story, Kylee! And congratulations (almost) on your 35th with Romie! :)

Btw, I just realized that I planted regular peas instead of just snow peas this year--only because I let some go past the small, flat stage where I usually eat them fresh out of the garden, and discovered actual peas inside the puffed-up pods. lol. So I'll be doing some shelling, myself, this week...

Sylvana said...

Nice car!
I love peas. My neighbor can't seem to grow them, so I grow enough for the both of us.

Corner Gardener Sue said...

Your post makes me smile. What a sweet story of how you got your car. I thought you were going to say the last time you planted peas the rabbits ate the plants, which has happened to me.

I don't grow peas every year, either, but this spring I planted a 4 foot row of a tall growing edible pod pea against our fence. It has produced well. I have had to shell some that filled out, and then I just cooked them all together. Mmm, good!

Postcards-Pumpkins said...

I didn't get anything planted on time this year. It's hard seeing as we have to move as soon as we sell the house. But I do have tomatoes, beans, watermelons, and pumpkins.

I got some fresh peas at a local farmers' market last week. Yum!

Vee at

Yolanda Elizabet Heuzen said...

That was a great story Kylee, thanks! And now I will have much fun thinking of you beetling around Ohio in your pretty silver beetle.

Peawise things are not so great here as it has been too dry and as a result I have hardly any peas to shell. But fortunately there are many veg that are really doing well in my potager so we won't go hungry yet. ;-)

TC said...

In this instance, gardening and cars go together like two peas in a pod.

Loved this post! (And that silver VW.)

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