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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 T T T

(Best months for growing Capsicum in Australia - temperate regions)

S = Plant undercover in seed trays. T = Plant out (transplant) seedlings.

August: Sow in pots

  • 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 in same bed): 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

28 May 16, Di (Australia - tropical climate)
I have one capsicum plant (came up from scraps thrown out), but grew beautifully and gave us two lovely sized capsicums. Will it refruit? or is that it's lifespan over?
29 May 16, Kevin OBryan (Australia - temperate climate)
Hello Di, Like chillies, if you cut it back gently it will refruit if you are in a frost free area, But you are far better to plant new seedlings every year in spring. I am still picking lots of capsicums from bushes planted last October but they are now much smaller and take a long time to turn red. I should have pruned the flowers from January on wards . I will pick all the remaining green fruit and pickle them. They grow very easily from seed treat just like you would tomatoes. Happy vegy gardening.
25 May 16, kim (Australia - tropical climate)
hi i am having trouble with my capsicum being eaten by bugs what should i do
08 May 16, Mohd (Australia - temperate climate)
Can I transplant capsicum at this season that is May ?
05 May 16, Helen (Australia - temperate climate)
Hi all. I was given a capsicum plant that had one large fruit. It ripened on the vine and was delicious. Now (6/5/16) the is producing more buds and flowers. Do I encourage the plant to produce more fruit or should I remove the bubs? Grateful for any tips. I am in the Hills district of Sydney nsw. Thanks.
21 Apr 16, Jessica (Australia - temperate climate)
Hi I've been growing this capsicum plant for ages and the first season the fruit was big, it grew even bigger then it got way too big for the pot it was in so we carefully transplanted it to a bigger one. Since the massive growth spurt it hasn't put on any big fruit, the biggest was maybe slightly bigger then one of those little bouncy balls. It gets food and stuff but still nothing, i encourage new fruit by constantly harvesting it which usually just gets thrown away as they're far too small to cut up (the entire thing is just seeds inside). Please help I don't know what else to do and I miss the fresh capsicum lol
03 Apr 16, Phil (Australia - temperate climate)
Will Capsicum fruit go on ripening when picked as tomatoes do?
30 Mar 16, Alex Clifton (Australia - temperate climate)
Hi, I am having trouble with a crop of capsicum. Despite fertilizing with Nitram several times as my crop gets older their leaves and stems are becoming floppy. Can anyone help me?
31 Mar 16, Lorna (Australia - temperate climate)
Hi Alex and in the same climate zone as you. As your capsicums plants get bigger we stake them up by putting a stake at each end of the row and run string between them, run a small loop around the plant near the top and tie to the string ties, as the capsicums tend to weigh down the stems. If you are experiencing a lot of heat as we are with 30oc plus heats they may need more water too. We fertilize with Seasol once a fortnight and give them a side dressing of AG lime at the same time. Capsicums are a huge lover of calcium so their vegetables grow with lovely thick walls or alternatively put some washed crushed egg shells around the base will work too. Hope they perk up for you.
18 Mar 16, Doug adams (Australia - temperate climate)
Why are my capsicum falling off when small
Showing 1 - 10 of 299 comments

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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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