How to Grow Peppers

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How to Grow Peppers

You’ll be glad to know that you can start growing peppers from inside your home with ease. Even if you live in an apartment, you can grow peppers on a windowsill. In this tutorial, we will discuss growing peppers outside in the garden.

Pepper Varieties

There are many different varieties of pepper, and the most popular by far is the sweet tasting green bell pepper. In addition, there are spicier banana peppers, cherry peppers and paprika.

Selecting the Site for Peppers

Peppers like to grow in a warm spot in rich well-drained soil.

Start to plant the seeds and prepare the growing area only after all frost has passed. Peppers grow well on raised beds as they like the soil and air to be warm. If you can test the soil, it should ideally be around 6.6 – 7.0 in its pH value.

Preparing the Site

Peppers like to have magnesium in the soil where they grow so when preparing the area work some salts into the soil as well as a moderate amount of manure or compost. This will help them develop at their best.

Planting the Seeds

Plant the seeds in the area you have prepared after around 2 weeks of noticing the last frost. The soil temperature should be at least 60 degrees F.

You should space the seeds about 14 inches apart. This is just a guideline, since the spacing will depend on the type of pepper you are growing. Smaller varieties should be brought an inch or two closer.

If your peppers grow tall, you will need to provide a support for them to grow against. A bamboo stick works great for this.

Watering

Peppers need to be given about an inch of water every week. Keep the soil moist; this is even more important when the fruits are developing. You can mulch the area with organic matter to help keep moisture present and discourage weeds.

Organic Fertilizer

Ensure that you spread organic fertilizer around the plants after they flower. This should be repeated three weeks later.

Harvesting and Consumption

You should harvest the peppers early and as many times as you can, since the more you pick the more plants will be produced. Peppers usually take about 70 – 90 days to mature but this depends on the variety of pepper. It will be mentioned on the seed packet how long that particular pepper will take to grow.

Peppers taste the best when they are big enough to eat. Note that the amount of vitamins A and C are at their highest only when the peppers have reached their full ripeness and color.

Inside spicy hot peppers there is an ingredient called ‘Capsaicin’. This is what makes them hot; the more of this ingredient the hotter the pepper. Green peppers are devoid of this, which makes them taste sweet.

Storing Peppers

Storing your peppers is easy. The best way to store them is inside an airtight container in the fridge. You can freeze them if they have to be stored for longer. For obtaining the best results from freezing, you should first slice up the pepper into quarters and put them in a pot of water on the stove to simmer for 5 minutes. Pour into a sieve to remove the water and then allow them to cool down at room temperature before placing them in a container in the freezer. Frozen vegetables can be left frozen for up to one year.

 

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