Peppers Don't Grow Large - Knowledgebase Question

Avatar for ftolkacz
Question by ftolkacz
April 9, 2000
I've grown green peppers for about 10 years. To date, I've not had much luck with getting them to grow larger than a child's fist. Also, I leave them on the vine to turn red, but most times they only get red on one side, and begin to rot. Can you give me any tips to make them grow larger, and how to get them to ripen to red properly? I've tried epsom salt mixed in with the soil, and setting the plant deeply.

Answer from NGA
April 9, 2000
Peppers need a soil with a pH around 6.0 to 6.5, well prepared with ample amounts of organic matter, and a good supply of phosphorus. Note that an oversupply of nitrogen can reduce yields. You might want to run some basic soil tests and see what amendments, if any, need to be added.

Peppers also need an evenly moist soil that is well drained. If drainage is a problem, the plants won't thrive and fruit will be small. Watering properly is probably the most critical factor in my experience, assuming the soil is adequate.

You may also find that some varieties simply hold better than others to the mature red stage. Also, leaving peppers on the plant to fully ripen will actually reduce the overall yield. Hope this helps!

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