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Growing Chilli peppers, also Hot peppers

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

(Best months for growing Chilli peppers 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: 16 - 20 inches apart
  • Harvest in 9-11 weeks. Wear gloves to pick 'hot' chilies.
  • Compatible with (can grow beside): Best grown in a separate bed as chillis need plenty of light and air circulation.
  • Small, hot, chilli
    Small, hot, chilli

Small bushy plants. Dark green ovate leaves.

Chilli need warm frost free weather, so protect with glass or plastic covers if planting outside in cooler areas.

Most varieties need a long growing period to produce many fruit.

There are many types of chilli. Some are more fiery than others. As a general rule, the smaller the pod the hotter the taste.

Culinary hints - cooking and eating Chilli peppers

Chillis freeze very well. Wash, dry, and free whole. Use them direct from the freezer (no need to defrost).
Wear plastic gloves or wash your hands thoroughly after handling and cutting to avoid accidentally rubbing chilli juice onto your mouth or eyes!

Your comments and tips

19 Apr 18, Adrian (Australia - sub-tropical climate)
My question is I'm in Queensland Brisbane wanting to grow chilli seeds over the winter ready for summer if I use a heat mat will that be sufficient enough to get them ready for summer
22 Apr 18, (Australia - sub-tropical climate)
Think about whether you live in a frost free, then read the above again. Time to plant what temperature you need, time it takes to grow. It is all there.
22 Apr 18, Lina (Australia - temperate climate)
I'm in Melbourne and grew chili seeds over winter successfully just by putting the pot in a sunny window over winter, then planted them outside in late spring. If that works down here it should work up there without a heat mat too... :)
20 Apr 18, John Macmahon (Australia - temperate climate)
G'day Adrian. I tried with the heat mat last year and did not get a very good result and a late crop. Having said that I now have 1.2m tall Carolina Reaper, Moruga Scorpian and Bhut Jolokia from which I will be striking cuttings for next season to increase production. I have previously got from three to five years cropping from well cared for and fed plants.
18 Apr 18, school student (Australia - sub-tropical climate)
thanks, very helpful.
11 Mar 18, Campbell (New Zealand - sub-tropical climate)
Hello. What happens if I leave ripe chilies on the plant. Is there a risk they will start to rot? I have a few that seem to be starting to soften in places and splitting ?
22 Apr 18, Brooke (New Zealand - sub-tropical climate)
Yes they will rot best to pick when ripe and freeze
02 Mar 18, Daniel (Australia - sub-tropical climate)
I have a medium size Chilli plant that has been in the ground now for the summer period but it hasn't produced a single fruit. It is only starting to flower. I have never tried growing Chilli before so I have a few questions 1. When/what month should I expect some chilli's?(Summers finished here) 2. Are the flowers the base of the chilli's pod? 3.What can I use use to stop moths/bugs eating the leaves? TIA
05 Mar 18, Mike (Australia - sub-tropical climate)
Read the notes here. Plant during the summer. Has a long growing season. Take 9-11 weeks to produce fruit. Needs warm and airy space. 1. Flowers will produce chilli I presume. 2. Yes the chilli should come from the flower pod. 3. Look up a spray on the internet for spraying chilli. Or put bird netting over it.
27 Feb 18, Phil (Australia - temperate climate)
I'm not sure the best section to post regarding bitter melon, so have ended up here. Can someone possibly explain what would cause a bitter melon to get a horseshoe shape, in fact one is almost full circle. Stress?
Showing 1 - 10 of 313 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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