A couple of weeks ago, Eric cut down some of the dead and dying branches on the Alder tree in the back yard. There were three long and relatively straight thin branches that I thought would be perfect for making a pea tee-pee, so I saved those (along with a handful of shorter straight branches to use elsewhere in the garden).

Buried in the dirt a bit.

First step, as always, was to clear out as many of the ugly rocks as possible. At least this time it was relatively easy as the weed barrier plastic was still somewhat intact, and I could just lift and shake the rocks away. Then I dug down about 6 to 8 inches in the clay soil to sink the branches so the structure is pretty stable, especially with the March lion about to roar through.

All tied up.

Then I tied the tops together with twine, making sure to secure it tightly so it doesn’t come apart and whip my peas around.

All twined up.

Then I wrapped the twine around and around and around. It’s kinda like putting the lights on a Christmas tree. Except I made sure to wrap the twine around each branch so it doesn’t slip down too much. Sadly, I don’t think I wrapped it tight enough, and the first time I sprayed the ground with water, the twine started to droop a bit more than I wanted it to. Maybe when the peas start growing, and I start watering closer to the ground, it’ll turn out OK.

I planted some sweet peas along the other two sides.

The triangle of the base points west, with the flat side on the east. I planted some pea starts I bought along the east side and then planted pea seeds along the other two sides, with the hope that the starts will get a head start and stay ahead of the seeds, and get maximum sun through the Spring.

This isn’t my first time planting peas. In the past, I’ve run them along a trellis that hangs from the back fence. That works out pretty well, but I’ve always started the peas a bit too late in March. I still hope to get more peas in the ground in the back, as well as some bush peas along the side of the house. Maybe tomorrow.


One thought on “Tee-Pea

  1. I used some alder branches this way for the first time last year–I was really happy with the results! Hadn’t thought of doing sweet peas this way–they’re one of my favorite flowers; might have to give it a try!


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