Delightful Fragrance Sweet Pea Plants
The sweet pea plants your grandmother grew truly deserved the name “sweet” because of their delightful fragrance. Sweet Pea are annual garden climbing plants from the legume family Fabaceae. Sweet Peas have a Mediterranean origin, but now thrive worldwide. They are very popular with gardeners as they are attractive and easy to grow. The Sweet Pea plant, if properly supported, can grow up to four to six feet (1.2 to 1.8 meters) tall. The compound leaves consist of two leaflets with a tendril in the middle. It is this tendril that grasps a support and helps the plant climb. Sweet Pea flower plants are fragrant, delicate-looking and a single bloom has three or four florets on a stem. While Wild Sweet Peas come in a few select colors, specially cultivated varieties or cultivars are available in a very wide profusion of colors. Sweet Pea cultivars have been grown since the seventeenth century.
Sweet pea plants are cultivated from seeds. These seeds, incidentally, are very toxic; unlike their legume relatives, they are not to be eaten. To get show variety flowers and colors of your choice, buy top quality seeds from a reliable seed retailer. Some gardeners prefer soaking the seeds overnight before planting. This softens the hard seed cover, and the seeds that swell up are the ones guaranteed to develop into seedlings. Others consider this practice detrimental to plant growth.