Features

July 18, 2013

Consumer Q’s

Question: I’m looking for “cabbage peas.” My grandparents used to purchase them at feed & seed stores in south Georgia. They were plentiful in the 40s, 50s and 60s, but now I cannot find them. People I ask remember them, but no one knows where to get any. They are a type of field pea/Southern pea that is very tasty, green with a darker green eye and small like a Lady pea. The plants grew about waist high. Can you help me?

Answer: We are unfamiliar with cabbage peas but did some checking. You are not the only person looking for them. We found others online also looking but not having any luck.

We could not find any articles about them in the Farmers and Consumers Market Bulletin. We could not find them listed in any seed catalogs, including ones that specialize in old vegetable varieties. We contacted our friends at Southern Exposure Seed Exchange, a company that offers a lot of old and “heirloom” vegetable varieties and is dedicated to preserving them. They hadn’t heard of cabbage peas but checked the Seed Savers Exchange's yearbook archives for the last 30 years and could not find them there, at least under that name. Cabbage peas also were not on the list of USDA Southern pea introductions, but that could be because they probably are an old variety that was not developed by a university or commercial breeder.

So, I am afraid we have struck out. If anyone knows a source of cabbage peas or more information about them, please write Arty Schronce, 19 Martin Luther King Jr. Drive, Room 128, Georgia Dept. of Agriculture, Atlanta, GA 30334 or e-mail me at arty.schronce@agr.georgia.gov. Other gardeners want to grow and preserve this variety, and perhaps some seed companies and farmers do as well.   

Q: Will there be another Georgia Grown Farmers Showcase at the Atlanta Farmers Market this year?

A: Georgia Grown Farmers Showcase returns to the Atlanta State Farmers Market July 27th from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Bring your family and friends to buy Georgia Grown fruits and vegetables, meet Georgia farmers and have fun.

Approximately 36 vendors will be taking part. There will be antique tractors on display, a Big Green Egg cooking demonstration, a watermelon seed spitting contest, a visit from the Georgia Watermelon Queen, peach and watermelon samples and more.

Shopping carts will be provided for your convenience so you can load up on a wide range of locally produced fruits and vegetables, pork, beef, poultry, seafood products, flowers and other nursery items, olive oil (some innovative Georgia farmers are growing and processing olives now), jams, jellies, barbecue sauces, different varieties of honey, baked goods and other prepared foods. Early holiday shoppers will find Georgia made soaps, candles, beeswax lip gloss, candy and more.

Located off I-75 in Forest Park, the 150-acre Atlanta State Farmers Market is one of the largest of its kind in the world. Georgia Farmers Sheds 13 and 14 will be closed to cars so visitors can mingle with vendors from across the state as they shop. If you get hungry for a meal, you can eat lunch at one of the restaurants at the market.

The event is a good way to get some Georgia Grown produce and to support Georgia farmers.

If you have questions about services or products regulated by the Georgia Department of Agriculture, visit our website at www.agr.georgia.gov, write us at 19 MLK Jr. Drive, Room 128, Atlanta, GA 30334 or email us at arty.schronce@agr.georgia.gov.

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