The Q&A Archives: Tips for Growing Habaneros

Question: My class was growing petunias under the GrowLab lights this past winter and we experienced some problems getting them going. We turned to you for some advice and your suggestions turned them into monsters and they are still growing and flowering afterabout 4 months. Thanks. Now we are wondering what to do with the habanero plant we started about the same time. It has 3 peppers on it which haven't grown in about 3 weeks.(Time to pick?) The plant is about 50 cm tall and has about 100 flowers on it but they are all falling off the plant and we have had no new peppers now for about 4 weeks. What can we do to stop the flowers from falling off so they can fruit? We have not found much information on this type of pepper except for all of the salsa recipes on the internet. The plant, by the way, seems very healthy otherwise. We need information. Hope you can help. Howard at Alternative HS Flint,MI

Answer: I'm glad we could help get your petunias to grow like monsters! Now for the habaneros. These are EXTREMELY HOT peppers and care should be used in handling the fruits, expecially with the kids. They can literally burn you on contact with the flesh and seeds. They like hot conditions to grow. You probably should pick the three fruits you have and cut back on a bit on nitrogen fertilizing, so the plant will stop producing so much growth and perhaps those flowers will start setting. Keep them wateredtoo.

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