Peanut is a common food that can be found in our daily eating diet. It is loved to eat by a lot of people. However, do you know how a peanut plant looks or do you ever curious about how to plant peanut?
Where are peanuts come from?
Peanuts are actually part of the legume family native to South America, Mexico, and Central America. They are also known as earthnuts, jack nuts, goobers, goober peas, pinders, manila nuts, pindas, and monkey nuts.
Is the peanut the seed?
It is not a seed and it is not a nut either. In fact, it is categorized in the vegetable category and it is belonging to the legume family. Which means it is of the same category as beans and peas.
The peanut’s popularity is apparent in its variety of forms. Peanuts are often presented as peanut butter, salted peanuts, peanut butter sandwiches, candy bars, peanut brittle, and shelled peanuts. Their high nutritional content and affordability over other nuts have also made peanuts a popular choice.
Planting your own peanuts for selling, for making peanut butter, or simply for eating can be quite fun and delightful. Here are a few basic steps when planting peanuts.
Required Materials to Plant
- raw peanuts with the red skin still intact
Steps to Grow Peanuts
Planting and Fertilizing the Peanuts
Do you know when is the best time for you to plant peanuts?
Peanut is a warming crop, so the temperature cannot be too low. The most suitable and stable temperature for peanut seeding is around 12 °C, and its optimum flowering temperature is 23-28 ° C, the lowest temperature is 19 ° C. By taking this into consideration, the best climate to grow peanuts would be after the last frost of the spring.
Here are the steps for you to plant and fertilize the peanuts:
- Choose a planting site with light and sandy soil.
- Prepare the site by plowing the ground at least 7 inches or more. Sow in manure or compost.
- Soak the peanuts overnight before planting for quicker germination.
- Plant the peanuts less than 2 inches deep with at least 7 inches spacing between them. Take care that the kernels are kept whole.
- Water the peanuts well after covering with soil. Avoid watering again until the emergence of new sprouts. It takes about 10 to 15 days for new sprouts to grow. Do not overwater when you begin to water them regularly.
- Keep the plantation site free of weeds that may hinder peanut growth.
- Add more compost or fertilizers with extra calcium to enrich the soil.
After the planting process, do you know how long do peanuts take to grow and when peanuts can be harvested? Well, it generally takes about 4 to 5 months for the plants to mature. It is nearly time to harvest the peanuts when the leaves turn yellow.
Here the harvesting process:
- Dig up a few peanuts to check if they are mature when the leaves start turning yellow. Continue checking periodically until the peanuts are ready for harvest.
- Harvest the peanuts by pulling the entire plant out. Each plant yields about 40 peanuts.
- Harvest the peanuts before a hard freeze.
Storing the Peanuts
After the peanuts have been harvested, you need to keep them in good storage.
Here are the steps for you to store them properly:
- Dry the peanuts thoroughly after harvesting. You may leave them by the windows to dry if the weather is good or find a place with good air circulation indoors.
- You may use the oven to dry peanuts in small quantities. Place the peanuts in a tray and bake them in a preheated oven at 130′ F. The peanuts should be dry, but still soft.
- Throw away rancid or moldy peanuts as they may contain a fungus called Aflatoxin. The said fungus can cause serious illness to humans when ingested.
- Store shelled and unshelled peanuts in a sealed container. Shelled peanuts can last for 3 months in the refrigerator. Unshelled peanuts can last for 4 to 6 months in the refrigerator.
- Store peanuts in freezer-safe containers for long-term storage.
What soil Do peanuts grow best in?
The requirement of soil texture to grow peanuts is not very high. Except for soils that are too sticky, the soil of the general texture can be planted with peanuts.
The most suitable soil for growing peanut is the sandy soil with medium fertility, loose and breathable. If the peanut is planted in the clay soil, you can keep the soil to be loosened and the yield can be higher.
Peanuts are acid-resistant, so they are suitable for growth in slightly acidic soil with a pH of 6.0-6.5. Peanuts can still grow in acidic soils, but lime must be applied to improve the soil and increase yield.
However, peanuts are not salt-tolerant. Planting in saline-alkali soils will make it easy to get germinated and death, the growing plants are short and the yield is low.
Since tea is also suitable for growth in slightly acidic soils, peanuts are particularly suitable for tea plantation or tea tree interplanting.
Peanuts are calcium-loving crops, which grow well in high-calcium soils with high yields.
Besides, peanuts are suitable for growth in soils with deep plow layers (about 30 cm in thickness) and medium organic matter (about 1%). If the soil organic matter content is too high (more than 2%), the pods are susceptible to contamination and resulting in lower quality.
How big the size of the plant can be?
Mature plants can have a size of about 36 inches for its diameter and with a height of 18 inches.
How many peanuts can you get from one plant?
On average, each plant can produce about 25 to 50 peanuts.
Is it easy to grow peanuts?
As long as you are having the right soil, and fertilize the soil in the right way, then it is actually not so hard for you to grow them. Once everything is set, you just need to water them every day. But do remember to not overwatering the plants.
Can I grow peanuts at home?
Yes, you can grow them at home. You can plant them in a container or in a pot.
Peanut seeds are easy to root and sprout, and the planting process is rather simple.
You need to make sure the plant is receiving enough sunlight, and the soil in the pot or container is breathable.
Before planting the seed, you need to apply compound fertilizer in the early stage. After that, you need to apply phosphate fertilizer and potash fertilizer in the medium stage.
You only need to prepare seeds for potted peanuts. Plant the seeds about 3 cm under shallow soil. Before planting, you must remove the shell so that it is better to germinate and root.
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