Wednesday, 12 February 2014

Sugar Beth F1 Peas

I was lucky enough to receive the variety Elisabeth, a lovely salmon-pink flowered Mange-tout pea, from a friend and I have enjoyed growing it the last few years. 

Elisabeth Pea

It's a climber and looks particularly pretty growing alongside white and magenta purple pea vines. 

I've made several crosses using Elisabeth and the inspiration for this cross came when I grew Sugar Magnolia a purple podded sugar snap variety, bred in the US by Dr Alan Kapuler, alongside Elisabeth. The purple pods were such a pretty contrast, I thought it would be fun to see if the two traits could be recombined in one variety. I've given the working name Sugar Beth to the resulting F1 plants/F2 seed.

Sugar Beth F1
 As you can see they have purple magenta flowers, 

Sugar Beth F1
 purple splodges in the leaf axils

Sugar Beth F1
 and partly purple pods, all in all very pretty. 

Sugar Beth F1

The couple of pods I tasted raw were very tasty and very much a mangetout type, no hint of fibre in the pods.
When first harvested the seeds looked to be green seeded although now they have dried further there are subtle variations. 

F2 Seed

 The dried pods are quite soft and fragile to the feel and none of them appeared thick and fibrous.

Non fibrous pods

I'm looking forward to seeing how they segregate this season, it would be great to get some different colour combinations.

For pictures of Sugar Beth F2 progress have a look here Growing Food Saving Seeds

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