The Q&A Archives: Saving Green Pepper Plants

Question: I have heard that green pepper plants are perennials and that you can save them for up to 5 years. I dug 5 of them up this year and put them in pots, placed them in front of a south window. What I'd like to know is do I continue to water through the winter months or do I quit and let them go dormant and move them out of the south window? I live in zone 4 in Central Iowa.

Answer: You may need to experiment and see what works best for you. In my experience the peppers need as much light as we can give them -- a greenhouse is really ideal -- in order to keep growing actively. If the light is insufficient the plants tend to become unhealthy. However, you can try to slow the plants down so they can cope with the reduced light. To do this, give them as much light as you can and keep them fairly cool, say around 50 to 55 degrees. As growth slows, reduce the water and fertilizer accordingly. In the spring when they begin to grow again you can feed and water them a bit more. Acclimate them to the outdoors gradually and eventually move them into full sun again. Good luck with your project!

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