The black-eyed pea, also known as Vigna unguiculata unguiculata, is a type of legume native to Africa. It is a small, annual plant that grows to be about 1-2 feet tall and has hairy leaves and stems. The plant has small, white or purple flowers, and produces pods containing black-eyed peas.
The plant prefers warm, sunny growing conditions and well-draining soil. It is sensitive to frost and should be planted after the danger of frost has passed. In order to cultivate the plant successfully, a grower may need to provide support for the vines to climb and protect them from pests and diseases.
It is often used as a cover crop and for soil improvement, as it can fix nitrogen in the soil. The plant is also edible and the peas can be harvested and cooked for use in a variety of dishes. The edible parts of the plant can be stored after harvest by drying or freezing.
In addition to its use as a food crop, the black-eyed pea has a number of other uses. The plant can be used as a source of livestock feed and its leaves can be used as mulch. It is also valued for its ability to attract and provide food for a variety of wildlife species.