Just a little note on how the experiment between soil and compost is going.
From watching the video on growing your own peas (sown directly outside in both these cases) on the GIY Ireland website, I decided to trial peas sown directly into soil ( which was mixed with a small amount of compost) versus peas sown into a compost row ( where a few inches of the soil is dug out and replaced with compost).
Video on GIY Ireland - Peas direct
I will update the post with photos shortly ( just away with work for a couple of days).
So far the Peas sown in the compost have grown only slightly better than those in the soil (decent soil)- but really the difference in growth is negligible.
The biggest difference is in the weeding. As this is my first year growing in the soil there are a lot of weed seeds loving the attention the peas have been getting. It has been an absolute pain to keep the peas sown directly into the soil weeded compared with the seeds grown in the line of compost. As the compost is sown in a long line - the weeds that do appear either side are easily gotten rid of with the hoe. The weeds in the soil involve a lot of back breaking hand weeding. I tried to delicately hoe around them, but ended up killing more peas than weeds so gave that up! There are only a handful of weeds in total that appeared in the compost over the past few months.
I will definitely be putting all my peas in the compost row next year!
If there is a difference in the cropping I will let you know!