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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 64°F and 95°F. (Show °C/cm)
  • Space plants: 8 - 20 inches 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

22 Jan 18, zeta (Australia - temperate climate)
just learned about male and female capsicum my question is do I need both seeds or will they grow from either?
26 Dec 17, (Australia - temperate climate)
hi why is my capsicums flowers but not fruiting?
28 Dec 17, Mike (Australia - sub-tropical climate)
Check on the internet about capsicum pollination time. I have read that they require a certain temperature to pollinate. Something like 18-23 degrees, not say 15. I have just finished my crop - not the best because the plants were shaded by egg plants a lot. Try watering down at the root zone and not the bush.
06 Dec 17, Bob (New Zealand - sub-tropical climate)
Do i need to stake capsicum
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.
23 Nov 17, Mike (Australia - sub-tropical climate)
"Do I need bees for pollination? No, bees are not important for pollination. Although you may see plenty of bees in the patch, capsicumĀ is self-pollinated. Bush movement due to wind is sufficient for pollination". You probably have no wind inside the house. Also I have read caps need the temp above a certain temperature to pollinate. I wouldn't recommend growing anything inside - plants need sun - some more than others. Plants like caps and tomatoes need wind to pollinate. Others need bees.
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.
Showing 1 - 10 of 412 comments

Anything from the allium family, onions, garlic, leeks, chives, or beans (legume family) is recommended to follow fruiting crops.

- Darren

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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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