The Q&A Archives: Pruning Green Bell Peppers

Question: I am growing green bell peppers for the first time, and would like to know how to prune them. They seem to be very bushy around the center stem. Should they be? Also, some have begun to split shortly after starting to grow. Why?

Answer: Bell peppers need no pruning. Once they start setting fruit make sure and keep them well watered and fertilized and they will really grow and produce for you.

The split fruit may be due to an uneven supply of water. Sandy soils are especially bad about this. If the plant grows slowly due to limited moisture for a time and then receives a good rain or irrigation the fruit may grow very rapidly causing the skin to crack. This problem will probably not continue as a mature plant seldom does this, but you should make sure and keep the soil adequately moist (but not soggy). Organic mulch, such as newspaper covered with straw, helps equalize and maintain soil moisture, so give that a try.

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