Chickpeas are a nourishing food that adds protein, fibre and calcium to the diet. They are a staple in many countries, such as India, and can be grown easily in the home garden. Chickpeas thrive in cooler conditions and are grown in the winter in very warm climates. These legumes are used in dishes like hummus and curry. They are also known as garbanzo beans and Bengal gram.
Prepare a sunny location for planting chickpeas by mixing compost into the soil. Add phosphorus and potassium if the soil is lacking in it. Chickpeas don't need extra nitrogen. Ensure the soil is loose and well-draining by removing any sticks or rocks.
Sow chickpeas early, three weeks before the last frost. They grow in cooler weather and take 100 days to mature. Ideal growing temperatures are 21.1 to 26.7 degrees Celsius. Place each seed 2 inches into the soil and 6 inches apart.
Water the chickpeas to keep the soil continuously moist but not soggy. Water the bottom of the plants so the leaves and stems don't get too wet. Add extra compost around the soil halfway through the growth period.
Allow the pods to turn brown before picking chickpeas. Spread the pods out on a flat, warm surface to dry. They are dry enough when the pods start to split.