Besides tomatoes, peppers are one of the most commonly grown garden crops during the summer.
Gardeners are just crazy about peppers! So, with that in mind, here are several tips to help you grow, healthy, robust, and flavorful peppers this summer.
1. Peppers like evenly moist and evenly warm soil. If moisture levels or temperature levels fluctuate too much you will have problems with root rot and low fruit production. Use a good layer of mulch to help solve this problem.
2. Peppers like well drained soil. If they sit in thick wet soil, their roots will rot. If needed, plant them in containers or raised beds.
3. If you buy pepper seedlings in the nursery to transplant, make sure to look for strong stems and healthy, dark green leaves. Also don’t buy any plants that already have flowers or fruit on them because they won’t produce well for you after you have planted them out.
4. Not to beat the point to death, but as soon as you have planted your peppers, spread a thick mulch around the base of the plants, making sure the mulch does not touch any of the plant’s stem. For more about mulch read: The Wonders Of Mulch – A Complete Guide To Mulching
5. Water deeply during dry spells to encourage deep root development, and help with better tasting peppers. Lack of water can produce bitter-tasting fruit.
6. If any weeds pop up, carefully pull them by hand. Don’t heavily cultivate peppers because you can damage their roots and they won’t produce or grow as well.
7. Very hot days with temperatures over 90Â° F (32Â° C), can often cause pepper flowers to drop off and the plants to wilt. To avoid this, plant peppers so that taller garden crops, such as corn, will shade the peppers during the hottest part of the day. If that isn’t possible, putting shade cloth over them can help.
8. Peppers grow best when the soil temperatures are at least 60Â° F (16Â° C)
9. Most sweet and hot peppers are at their best when fully mature. That said, in order to keep plants bearing fruit longer, you will have to harvest some peppers before they are fully ripened. That’s OK, they will still taste super.
10. Always cut peppers from the plant, don’t pull them off. You can damage the stem and plant and slow fruit production.
11. Late in the season, at the end of summer, if frost is forecasted pick all the fruit. In fact the entire plant can be pulled up by the roots and hung to dry in a cool place indoors until the fruit ripens.
Have great week!