GValencia Peanuts - Benefits and Instructions

Peanuts prefer sandy, loose, well-draining soil. Do not sow peanuts after potatoes or beans have been grown in the plot, as they are susceptible to the same diseases.

Prepare a bed by tilling or digging in a couple of inches (5 cm.) of compost or rotted manure down to a depth of 8 to 12 inches (20-31 cm.). Peanuts fix their own nitrogen so do not need much in the way of fertilizer, but they do need plenty of calcium. To add calcium into the soil, amend it with gypsum. Plant the peanut seeds after the soil has warmed, about three weeks after the last frost. Soak the seeds in water overnight to stimulate germination and then plant seeds less than 2 inches (5 cm.) deep, and 4 to 6 inches (10-15 cm.) apart. The peanut seedlings will appear about a week after sowing and will then grow slowly for a month. Don’t worry; growth is occurring but just under the soil’s surface. When you see four leaves above the soil line, the plant no doubt has about a foot (31 cm.) of taproot along with lateral roots. Peanuts do like heat, but they need regular watering. Soak the plants deeply once or twice a week. Pay special attention to consistent watering 50 to 100 days from sowing when the pods are nearing the soil’s surface. As the plants near maturity, allow the soil to dry out. While growing, Valencia peanuts don’t usually need any fertilizer if the soil has been amended prior to sowing. However, if the plants look peaky, it’s fine to give them a diluted amount of fish emulsion just after the emergence of the seedlings, and then only that one time. Peanuts are susceptible to fertilizer burn, so be judicious with fertilizer application.

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