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
  • 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. 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 and white flesh 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.

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 21, Solomon Mareme Seepe (South Africa - Humid sub-tropical climate)
Where should I get capsicum chemical in South Africa around Johannesburg?
23 Jan 21, Vickie (Australia - temperate climate)
First time growing mini yellow capsicum. There are heaps on the Bush mainly green going to orange. When do I pick them
25 Jan 21, (Australia - temperate climate)
You can pick, green, orange or wait until yellow.
14 Jan 21, nesane (South Africa - Humid sub-tropical climate)
right time to plant green pepper and its fertilizer program limpopo wambath
18 Jan 21, (South Africa - Humid sub-tropical climate)
Check the planting guide here and just start with good rich free draining soil.
21 Oct 20, Elliot Vardis (Australia - temperate climate)
Sweet baby capsicums, can they be grown in pots? If so, what would be the most suitable size pot considering they grow to 40 cm tall. I thank you in anticipation. Elliot.
21 Oct 20, (Australia - sub-tropical climate)
Try a pot as wide as the plant grows.
05 Sep 20, Vic Earle (Australia - temperate climate)
A couple of capsicum plants against a northeast faceing wall have survived the winter. Almost all the leaves have survived but are now curling up should I remove them?
07 Sep 20, Corinna Wildenauer (Australia - temperate climate)
Ive had capsicums and chillies over winter and they usually come good once it warms up. I prune them back and when it gets warmer you should find new leaves starting to emerge. Give it a good feed. The old leaves will eventually drop off. I had a chilli plant live for several years in a pot.
25 Jul 20, Jack (Australia - temperate climate)
My capsicums have been stripped bare just the stem left about 14 to 16 cm high mind you it hasn't happened to the bigger one's. any advice especially on pesticides?
Showing 1 - 10 of 500 comments

If this happened suddenly, it was probably hornworm caterpillars--they can strip a plant almost overnight. I placed a bird feeder near my peppers and tomatoes, and birds are kindly taking care of the problem for me...but in the short run you might want to dust with Bt (Bacillus thuringiensis). It's organic, considered highly safe, and will stop the caterpillars from feeding.

- colleen

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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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