Peas are an extremely versatile crop for hydroponic systems. Not only are there varieties with edible pods, but the flowers, shoots, and tendrils can all be grown as either gourmet fresh vegetables or as attractive garnishes and additions to salads. Fresh shell peas can be produced in hydroponic systems; however, they take up considerable space for the yield of young peas produced. Instead, snow peas, snap peas, and pea shoots are typical specialty hydroponic crops.
Snow peas, be it the yellow, purple, or traditional green varieties, are often a highly priced fresh produce item and thus are grown in hydroponic greenhouses year-round.
For hydroponic systems, either tall or shorter varieties can be grown. Taller vines need some form of support, while shorter cultivars are up to two feet in height and are often self-supporting. Indeterminate, shorter varieties of peas are the preferred choice for those with limited space, as these can be planted in double rows or groups so that plants support each other without the need for trellising.
Choosing pea varieties with powdery mildew resistance is recommended and many of the new and improved cultivars are worth trialing in hydroponic systems.
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