hot peppers as perennials - Knowledgebase Question

Name: Linda Gordon
Miramar, Fl
Avatar for lkg7432
Question by lkg7432
July 28, 2009
In a previous question I asked about my hot pepper plant which is some relative of a cayenne pepper. The reply called it an annual - however in Florida I know it will grow as a perennial. Do I prune it back ever and if so, at what time and to what extent? It is in a container, big and bushy and still producing currently. Gets larger constantly.

Answer from NGA
July 28, 2009
Sweet peppers are typically annuals, but under the right growing conditions hot pepper plants can be perennial - if they are protected from frost. I know some do grow in Florida as perennials. They can be pinched back to encourage a bushy growth habit and to keep their size under control. Do this on a regular basis - don't wait until they are overgrown or they will become bare in the center and leggy with just a few leaves. Just cut them back gently on a regular basis (every 2-3 weeks while they are actively growing) or pinch out the growing tips to encourage two new stems where one once was. Enjoy!

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