Sweet Pepper Crispy Burpee

Growing peppers from seed is the most cost-effective way to achieve a tasty harvest and, given good conditions for germination, we are confident that you will be delighted with the results. To help you achieve success we have put together some hints and tips for growing!

1: Sow your pepper seeds in pots

Sow your pepper seeds on top of moist compost in small pots or trays. Place them in a propagator for faster germination.

Don’t worry if you haven’t got a propagator – just put a clear plastic bag over the pot and secure it with a rubber band. Place on a sunny windowsill. Peppers like a temperature of 18-21 degrees Celsius but chillies prefer hotter 21-24 degrees Celsius.

Hand sowing pepper seeds tray
Start your pepper seeds off in trays or small pots
Image: Shutterstock

2: Repot your germinated pepper seeds

Once the seed has germinated, remove it from the propagator or remove the plastic bag. Please on a light windowsill or bench in a heated greenhouse. When plants are large enough to handle, pot them on into 10cm pots. Keep the soil moist and warm.

Pepper seedlings germinating on windowsill
When your pepper seedlings have germinated, move them onto a windowsill.
Image: Shutterstock

3: Add plant supports for your growing plants

When plants reach 20cm tall, add a stake or small cane to support them as they grow. This will stop them leaning. At this stage, chilli plants can have their tips pinched out to encourage them to branch and produce more fruit.

Sweet Pepper Liberty Belle Vegetalis staked up to support
Plant supports, such as canes or stakes, help support the plant as they grow.
Image: Sweet Pepper Liberty Belle Vegetalis

4: Plant out your pepper plants

After the chance of frost has passed, plant in the greenhouse border, in growbags or in 22cm diameter containers. Add small canes for support as these will help to support the weight of the fruit. Feed with tomato food every two weeks when the flowers begin to form.

Peppers 'Orange Kiss' from Dobies
After the last frost has passed, plant out your pepper plants.
Image: Peppers ‘Orange Kiss’ from Dobies

5: Harvest your ripe peppers

Once ripe, pick fruit regularly to encourage more to set. Harvest when green or red depending on the taste you would like to achieve. Chillies become hotter and sweet peppers sweeter as the red colour increases. Simply take some secateurs and cut just above the green stem leaving approx. 2.5cm (1″) at the top.. 

Multi-coloured Chilli Pepper 'Hot Banana' from Dobies
Peppers change colour as they ripen. 
Image: Chilli Pepper ‘Hot Banana’ from Dobies

Top tip on growing peppers

As the plants begin to fruit, gradually remove more leaves to allow the light to reach the ripening fruit.

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