The Q&A Archives: Unproductive peppers

Question: Last year my peppers were small and they grew late,they got off to a bad start. I put grass clippings in the holes the year before. I read it helped to keep the roots moist. I got alot of nice size peppers. I forgot to do this last season. Is this whyI had a late start and a small crop? Should I do the grass clippings trick? Or was it just luck that year? Also,I get little green worms on my broccoli.I think they are baby catapillers I hand pick them but they keep coming back. Can I make my own spray? And what can I use? Would mouth wash do the trick? I do not like putting anything on my vegies if I don`t have to. Mary Lanza Edison, New Jersey

Answer: I am not sure if the grass clippings were a factor in the great harvest of peppers you got the one year. I do know that peppers are picky about temperature. If it's not warm enough (70F), peppers! They like a steady supply of water and warm soil temperatures(above 60F) as well and warm air temperatures. If it's cool, they won't flower. The worms on your broccoli can be controled with BT, a substance that makes them sick to their stomachs. It is absoltely safe to use since its effects are specific only to the worms! It's a dust or spray. Great stuff!

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