Whether you’re looking for information on how to grow jalapenos, bell peppers, habaneros, ghost chiles or any other type of pepper, this article will provide a few tips so you can produce the most bountiful harvests possible. Not only are peppers an ornamental addition to your landscaping, but they’re also quite tasty.
The first thing to consider when growing peppers is your local weather. Peppers are not frost tolerant, so it’s important to sow seeds or transplant seedlings after the last chance of frost. Once the possibility of turning your pepper plants into popsicles has passed, start thinking about where exactly you intend to plant them. They require full sun and rich, well-draining soil which makes containers a great idea, especially for beginner gardeners. Containers can be easily moved and require very little when it comes to soil amendments. Simply grab a bag of high quality potting mix (preferably organic) from your local garden center, dump it in a pot, and you’re off to the races.
When transplanting seedlings, your goal is to create a cozy home for newborn pepper plants. Not only will they require consistent watering, they’ll need nutrients to flourish. I suggest using an organic starter fertilizer, such as E.B. Stone’s Sure Start, to ensure plants have what they need to mature and pump out spicy pods like nobody’s business. Sure Start contains a plethora of goodies that plants love, such as: blood meal, feather meal, bone meal, dried chicken manure, bat guano, alfalfa meal, kelp meal, potassium sulfate, humic acids and soil microbes including mycorrhizal fungi.
After planting, you must master the art of controlling your temptations; namely the urge to overwater. Unlike tomatoes and other needy plants, peppers actually do better when they’re not babied. They don’t like to be overwatered and a small amount of stress, such as letting the soil slightly dry before watering, produces more fruit and hotter fruit. Keep in mind peppers grown in containers will require more frequent watering than peppers grown in the ground.
With sun, heat, water and fertilizer, pepper plants will shoot up like crazy and start flowering in no time. After peppers form, you have the choice to pick them right away or wait until they mature and turn color (varies by type).
From a landscaping perspective, pepper plants are an awesome addition to any landscape. They sport a wide variety of colors, are relatively easy to care for, and produce food. (Doesn’t get much better than that.)