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Growing Capsicum, also Bell peppers, Sweet peppers

Jan F M A M J J A S O N Dec
  S S P P              

(Best months for growing Capsicum in USA - Zone 5a regions)

S = Plant undercover in seed trays P = Sow seed

  • Grow in seed trays, and plant out in 4-6 weeks. Sow seed at a depth approximately three times the diameter of the seed. Best planted at soil temperatures between 18°C and 35°C. (Show °F/in)
  • Space plants: 20 - 50 cm apart
  • Harvest in 10-12 weeks. Cut fruit off with sharp knife.
  • Compatible with (can grow beside): Egg plant (Aubergine), Nasturtiums, Basil, Parsley, Amaranth
  • 'Banana' capsicum
    'Banana' capsicum
  • A yellow capsicum
    A yellow capsicum

Small bushy plant about 40cm high The seeds are reluctant to start germinating if temperatures drop at night. These are best sown in small trays in a warm, sheltered place: a small greenhouse if possible. Then plant out when about 10 -12cm (4-5in) tall.

They are from the same family as chilli but are not hot and spicy. The seeds are bitter.

Capsicums are frost tender and need warmth to ripen the fruit to the brilliant reds and yellows of commercial ones. They can be used green but are not as sweet.

There are a number of colours available, chocolate, black, yellow, orange as well as red. They all start off green and change as they ripen.

In cool, wet weather cover with a cloche or frost fleece.

Culinary hints - cooking and eating Capsicum

Can be sliced and seeded and used raw in salads.
Will freeze successfully without blanching if seeded and sliced.

Or brush with olive oil, roast at a high temperature until the skin changes colour
then put in a covered dish until cool and rub off the skin and remove seeds.

Your comments and tips

23 Nov 17, Colleen Noonan (Australia - sub-tropical climate)
I am growing a couple of plants indoors with good sun. They look good but every time a flower appears it falls off a few days later. Is it that the soil need some enriching ? One plant is about 40 cm tall and looks so healthy but I doubt if it will ever produce.
12 Nov 17, Jack (New Zealand - temperate climate)
Is it to late to grow capsicum
12 Nov 17, Liz (New Zealand - temperate climate)
You might be lucky, capsicum like heat and our summer seems to be very slow starting. It is worth a try.
02 Oct 17, Tash (Australia - temperate climate)
Just pulled out some old unperfoming capsicums (left one in). Anything suggesions on good vegies to follw in their place (will re compost soil etc, but should i follow with any particular types?) Cheers
04 Oct 17, Darren (Australia - temperate climate)
Anything from the allium family, onions, garlic, leeks, chives, or beans (legume family) is recommended to follow fruiting crops.
04 Oct 17, Mike (Australia - sub-tropical climate)
If you are re-composting your soil and it has a good balance of nutrients- NPK and trace elements etc, then you could grow anything. There is an order of growing plants - but I don't follow it. A leafy veg like lettuce will take N out of the soil, then you plant a root veg like carrots (with less N you don't get so much leaf). You can then grow something like tomato and finally something like beans (they put N back in the soil for the lettuce). I may not have the order right here - read up on the internet.
23 Sep 17, Romyna (Australia - cool/mountain climate)
I am always very unssuceful in growing Capsicums in my garden the sun is very strong in summer 38d to 43 or more it kill many plants in the full sun. Do I need to grow the pepers plants in shady areas ?
25 Sep 17, Darren (Australia - temperate climate)
I live in a warm temperate area and found that capsicums can suffer in hot sun, despite what the literature says. Shadecloth, plenty of mulch, and regular deep watering helps.
24 Sep 17, Mike (Australia - sub-tropical climate)
Maybe try planting late summer and grow into the winter.
06 Sep 17, Frank bouwer (South Africa - Summer rainfall climate)
Hi im bussy putting up tunnels for my peppers where can i buy pepper plants that are ready for transfer planting im looking for aboout 2000 plant . Thank you
Showing 1 - 10 of 406 comments

Just pulled out some old unperfoming capsicums (left one in). Anything suggesions on good vegies to follw in their place (will re compost soil etc, but should i follow with any particular types?) Cheers

- Tash

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This planting guide is a general reference intended for home gardeners. We recommend that you take into account your local conditions in making planting decisions. Gardenate is not a farming or commercial advisory service. For specific advice, please contact your local plant suppliers, gardening groups, or agricultural department. The information on this site is presented in good faith, but we take no responsibility as to the accuracy of the information provided.
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