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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

30 Jan 16, Lil (Australia - temperate climate)
I have a capsicum plant about 25cm tall with lots of flowers forming. Should I remove some of the flowers so the plant will grow bigger or not??? Thanks ahead for your comments :)
28 Jan 16, Noel Eustace (Australia - temperate climate)
Why does my capsicum fall off when half grown?
16 Jan 16, Betty (Australia - temperate climate)
The leaves of capsicum plants have lots of holes. I caught some green worms. Are there any non-chemical ways to kill or prevent the further destroy? Many thanks.
21 Jan 16, Louise (Australia - temperate climate)
Look into companion planting, usually marigolds will do the trick but sure there are others.
28 Dec 15, Bob (Australia - temperate climate)
Planted 2 capsicum plants about 3 weeks ago 30 cms apart Seasolled twice a week . Initially grew from 150 cms to about 250 quickly and developed glowers but flowers withered and dropped off. Plants still looking healthy. Any suggestions
30 Dec 15, Tony (Australia - sub-tropical climate)
Check out an American site ...'Why A Pepper Drops The Flower Bud - Gardening Know How'. They say temperature, lack of pollination or fertiliser/water practices are usually the culprits
06 Jan 16, Hafeez Rehman (USA - Zone 6a climate)
You can polinate them by yourself. normaly it is bees who do it.. have a stick and wrap cotton on it....and touch this to all the flowers. when you done wait.... if the flowers has started becoming is now ok.
16 Dec 15, (Australia - sub-tropical climate)
I also have problem with my capsicums healthy plants fruit rots before mature. any advice to fix the problem
26 Dec 15, Louise (Australia - temperate climate)
peppers rot due to lack of calcium and/or to much nitrogen. Calcium is needed to build the cell wall of the fruit. Calcium up take can be prohibited due to nutriant inballance. NTS have a great product called "Total Cover" good for correcting inballances. Adding boron to the soil can help unlock calcum so needed for nutriiant uptake of plants.
28 Nov 15, Colin Varney (Australia - sub-tropical climate)
growing capsicums this year from seed and they seem to get to about 30mm and while still green they then go soft and fall off the plant. there is nothing eating on the inside and the fruit looks good but next day they have gone real soft as if cooked and fall off the plant
Showing 1 - 10 of 281 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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