Cowpeas Container Gardening Techniques, Tips, and Ideas
Today, we learn the topic of cowpeas container gardening tips and techniques. Black-eyed peas whose scientific name is Vigna unguiculata is also called as Cowpeas or Southern peas. These peas will love to grow in the warm climatic conditions. The soil these black eyed peas prefer is fertile soil which has lightweight. Black-eyed peas are very much suitable to be grown in containers, but each individual container should have a depth of 12 inches so that it would support the roots and stakes of the plants. If you take care of it in a proper manner, the black-eyed peas which are grown in containers will be ready for harvesting after three months you sow the seeds.
Black-eyed peas are the ones which are being grown in many parts of the world. These are called Black-eyed peas as they have a small black eye where the adjoining of the bean takes place to the pod within the shell. Apart from the name, these look more like beans than the peas and they also have the same cultural requirements as any other legumes. These are mostly used in the recipes as a “Soul food” and these are also believed to bring good luck if consumed on the eve of New year. The harvest of the black-eyed peas can be done as a snap bean after 2 months after the germination takes place. If you want to harvest it as a dry bean, then you will need to wait for 3 months. In this article, we will discuss how to grow black-eyed peas in a container.
Requirements of sunlight and temperature:
Black-eyed peas are the annual plants which will grow their best in full sun. There is no need to worry even if there is partial sunlight as they can manage the growth even then. The perfect temperature for growing black-eyed peas is 21°C to 35°C and they will not be able to tolerate the temperatures which are cold as they are very tender.
Plantation of Cowpeas Container Gardening:
Beans are the ones which usually not respond that good to transplantation and are mostly sown directly around or right after the spring. The important point to keep in mind about the growing of beans is that they should not be planted too early. If you do that, they will rot as the soil will be cool and damp. Most of the beans will the longer season of growing such as 2 months or more. If you want to start early, then you can use black plastic to keep the soil warm.
The containers which are made of Plastic, clay or wood can be considered to grow the black eyed peas. But before that, always make sure that each and every container has drainage holes at the bottom. You can put the potting mix in every container which has a depth of 12 inches or more until the top of the potting mix is about 1.5 inches to 2 inches from the top of the container. If you spread a thick layer of aged compost of 1 inch on the top of the mix, it will help you by providing the nutrients to the plants. The seeds have to be planted at a depth of 1 inch in the compost at a distance of 2 inches from each other. You will need to insert two stakes in the soil in every container. Each pair of stakes have to be arranged in such a way that they are standing opposite to each other at the sides of the container and should be held in place in a firm manner. After the sprouting takes place in the seedlings, few of them have to be removed so that the seedlings which are remaining are at a distance of 4 inches from each other.
Watering of Cowpeas Container Gardening
The plants of black-eyed beans will need moisture in an even manner regularly so that they would give the best growth. These will not do their best in the soil which is soggy. So make sure that you are not over-watering them. Application of water has to be done at the base of each and every individual plant so that the wetting of plant can be avoided along with the knocking off the flowers. The soil present in each container should be moist at a 1-inch depth. If the soil is dry, then make sure that you are watering it.
When you are watering the black-eyed peas plants, make sure that you are avoiding the leaves to get wet as this will lead to the promotion of fungus or any other conditions which destroy the beans. Many types of the beans are resistant to drought, but make sure that you are checking the soil often and water when the top layer is looking dried out.
Care and maintenance of Black-eyed peas plants:
Once the establishment is done, black-eyed beans will not need fertilizing and will be able to generate nitrogen on their own. Anyways, if the leaves of the plants which are young appear to be pale, that means that there is a deficiency of nitrogen and you can fertilize them with fish emulsion or any other fertilizer which has a rich content of nitrogen in it.
Black-eyed beans will generally not require fertilizer all across the growing season and applying the matured compost at the time of plantation will be enough for the complete season of growing. If you see that you should water the plants more often, then you can provide them with a single application of Nitrogen fertilizer about 1 or 1 ½ month after the plantation. Make sure that you are sprinkling half teaspoon of 32-0-0 fertilizer all around the plant’s base and do not forget to water the soil as soon as you sprinkle the fertilizer.
Control of pests in Cowpeas Container Gardening:
Black-eyed beans are very much prone to pests like aphids, bean beetles, leafhoppers and spider mites. All of the above pests can be controlled by the application of an insecticidal soap which is premixed. This can be sprayed on every part of the plant once in a week till you see the pests vanished. You can use this at the time of morning or evening so that you can make sure that it is not drying quickly because of sunlight. Aphids differ in terms of color and they have soft bodies with the shape of a pear. Spider mites will appear like very tiny spiders and they leave webbing on the black-eyed plants sometimes. By this, you can conclude that the plants are affected by spider mites. Bean battles are the ones which appear almost similar to ladybugs, but the difference is that these are of the color bronze. Leafhoppers are gracefully thin and generally green in color. They will start jumping when they get disturbed.
Read: Techniques of Urban Farming.