imafan26
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Need some help Growing Bell Peppers

I know a few of you said that bell peppers were very productive until frost killed them. I don't grow bell peppers much because if I get 5 peppers the first round and maybe if I am lucky, I get 3 on the second round, that would be the best I have ever done. If I get three period, sometimes that is the best I can do.

I know I have to have disease resistant peppers. So I can only grow Yellow Bell, California wonder, Keystone, Yolo Wonder, Bell Boy, and I have successfully gotten peppers from Chinese Giant.

Bell peppers a goners when it rains too much-they get fungal diseases and they don't produce any peppers when the temperature is 90.

So at what temperature can you plant bell peppers (max and min)?

I keep them in pots (nematodes). What would be the best size pot?

Fertilizer is not really an issue, just getting them to produce longer. Would growing them in more shade help? My sun intensity is a lot more than in most of North America so only Miami and the West Indies would really know how intense the sun gets. Humidity averages 80%.
Happy gardening in Hawaii. Gardens are where people grow.

catgrass
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Re: Need some help Growing Bell Peppers

I always have good success with bell peppers. I have grown California Wonder, and though they did not get as big as I would have liked, I still made plenty. I used the same fertilizer I use for my tomatoes (the kind with extra calcium added). I am in zone 9 and we have pretty intense heat during the summer. I pretty much neglect them, watering only when I am sure they are dry. I plant mine in the ground about now (mid-March) daytime temps are reaching 70ish and nighttimes are in the 50's. I always plant some flowers nearby to bring in the pollinaters. Mid summer, I'll make some sort of shade cover for them, and they usually make it throught the summer, and then produce again in fall. If your rainfall in the summer is too much, maybe planting in pots where they can drain well will help.
zone 9 Southwest La.

imafan26
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Re: Need some help Growing Bell Peppers

I live in zone 12a. Most of my peppers hot and not are in pots. Maybe I should try to put some peppers in the ground. I have grown all of my bell peppers in pots because of root knot nematodes. My temperatures are also hot in summer, mostly high 80's and up to 91 in Kona weather. Lots of humidity but not much rain in summer unless it is an El nino year. My soil is high in everything and has a pH of 6.4. The hot peppers have no problem in one and two gallon pots and the older peppers are in larger pots. Most of the bell peppers never made it out of the gallon pot alive. I might have better luck in the ground. Thanks I think I will try that and see if the ground gets me more peppers.
Happy gardening in Hawaii. Gardens are where people grow.

catgrass
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Re: Need some help Growing Bell Peppers

Everything that I grow in pots are in 10 gallon containers or bigger. The smaller pots don't have enough root room (In my opinion), and nutrients disappear quick. Our summers see temps close to 100 and above sometimes. Plant some marigolds close to your peppers-supposedly they help control root nematodes. That is a problem I don't have, but I always plant marigolds everywhere in my garden. Does it work? I don't know-but I plant the marigolds cause I like them. Our humidity is up there, too -My plants are about 1-2 feet apart. I have never had a mold/fungus problem with them, but I think that's just luck!
zone 9 Southwest La.

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ElizabethB
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Re: Need some help Growing Bell Peppers

Imafan - Each year I plant bell peppers (red, yellow, orange, green), jalapeno peppers, sweet bananas, pablanos and 1 cayenne. For years they have been stellar producers. For the last 2 seasons I have gotten very little production. The bell peppers, pablanos and cayenne did nothing. The Jalapenos and Sweet Bananas produced only half of what I expected.

IDK what the problem is. The peppers and other vegetables are al region specific. I refresh the soil 2x annually with compost. The soil is tested for pH, nutrients and pathogens at least every 2 years. I have soaker hoses for watering when we don't get enough rain. Go figure.

Honestly my over all gardening experience over the last 2 years has been so depressing that I was ready to just hang it up.

Yesterday G, my sweet man, went out and bought boards to make 3 new boxes. 2 for veggies and 1 for herbs. I called my friend in the appliance department at Lowe's this a.m. and will meet him early tomorrow to gather appliance boxes to serve as a base of my raised beds.

I used my compost in the sawdust berm left from the stump grinding of a huge oak. I will have to use Parish compost in my boxes.

Of course I am late getting started but what the heck.

Happy gardening all.
Elizabeth - or Your Majesty

Living and growing in Lafayette, La.

When weeding, the best way to make sure you are removing a weed and not a valuable plant is to pull on it. If it comes out of the ground easily, it is a valuable plant. ~Author Unknown

catgrass
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Re: Need some help Growing Bell Peppers

Elizabeth, last year I did ok with bell peppers, though I have done better-but I had an outstanding year for jalapenoes. Never made the first cucumber, and the stink bugs got my tomatoes before I did. Hoping this year is better.
zone 9 Southwest La.

imafan26
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Re: Need some help Growing Bell Peppers

Last year the hot peppers did o.k. I even now have a couple of jalapeno's that have lived over, but they are a local cultivar, the mainland ones do not live past a year. I do grow a bunch of nectar plants for pollinators and beneficial insects and I rarely use insecticides unless, I have no other alternative.

I keep most of my hot peppers in 1-3 gallon pots for the first couple of years and then pot them up. I just lost an 8 year old super chili to peach scale. Peach scale is resistant to pesticides so I use soap and a brush to scrub them off. The plant just got worse over three years, so it was time for it to go. It actually started as a seedling (from the birds) in my eggplant pot, so that was the only one in a 20 inch pot.

I do have hot spots for nematodes and I do plant crackerjack marigolds, sun hemp and mustard to kill them. In one of the spots, that I had nematodes, I also had a lot of nut sedge, so I dug all of the soil out a couple of feet down and put in all new soil. Most of my plants in the ground do have to be nematode resistant, so that keeps the nematode counts down.

The real pain, is that I have to work those areas last and when I am done I have to clean my tools, and boots with bleach.

My bell peppers never live long enough to outgrow the 1 gallon pot, but I might try a few in bigger pots to start with and see if that helps. I don't usually lime anything anymore, but I will try giving the peppers some dolomite and see if that improves it as well. I get dolomite from my orchid club and I may have a bottle of it lying around somewhere. I gave a bag of it away a few months ago.

Thanks this gives me a couple of things I can try to do to get more production.

I have been having problems with some of the other plants too. Last year, I only got a few tomatoes, 4 zucchini from two plants that just could not get the flowering to sync., and this year my cucumber is petering out after one cucumber. I thought it was probably due to the weather moving the seasons later. The cold weather persisted until June and it rained later than usual. This year it is again staying cold longer and although because of the storms that came by earlier this year, we got the usual inches of rain, it has been drier than usual the rest of the time. I have very crunchy and dying grass now, because there hasn't been enough rain and I have my sprinklers turned off at this time of the year.
Happy gardening in Hawaii. Gardens are where people grow.

Bobberman
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Re: Need some help Growing Bell Peppers

Peppers need hot nights. Put peppers near a white north side fence or wall or place some white sand or perlite on the ground below the peppers and they will grow better.
I enjoy fishing ,gardening and a solar greenhouse! carpet installation repair and sales for over 45 years! I am the inventor of the Bobber With A Brain - Fishing Bobber!

imafan26
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Re: Need some help Growing Bell Peppers

In summer not a problem. My average day temperature is 88 and the night temps are 71. It is only cold now with day temps in the 70's or 80 and night temps in the upper 50's and 60's. Bell peppers actually do not like it much at 90, so I might have to provide some shade in summer.
Happy gardening in Hawaii. Gardens are where people grow.

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jal_ut
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Re: Need some help Growing Bell Peppers

Seems many of you grow in pots or raised beds. I don't. I grow out on the garden plot in the back yard in the soil that was laid there by the creator. So, can't offer much help on container growing. I just plant, started plants with 3 or 4 true leaves, out about June 1, which is usually past frost, and in full sun. They get watered once a seek. I usually get some peppers, but they are gone with the first frost, usually around the first week of September. Its a summer crop.
Gardening at 5000 feet elevation, zone 4/5 Northern Utah, Frost free from May 25 to September 8 +/- Plant a Garden

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brooksms
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Re: Need some help Growing Bell Peppers

Great advice here. Now if only I could get pepper seeds to germinate! I know they say pepper seeds take more time but I am getting so impatient waiting on them.

imafan26
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Re: Need some help Growing Bell Peppers

Soak the seeds overnight first in lukewarm water. They germinate best when the night temperatures are 70-80 degrees. So a warm spot, heat mat or waiting until it is warm enough helps. Make sure your seeds are fresh. Pepper seeds are good for about 3 years if they are kept cool and dry.

My sweeter peppers are starting to germinate better now, but the temperatures have been crazy, down in the 50's one week and up to 68 the next. Sometimes it is hit or miss. I got two yellow bells to germinate (the seeds were 5 years old so that may be the reason). I also got nearly all of my Anaheim seeds to germinate on a warm week.

Germinating them is not my problem, it is keeping them alive to produce more than 3-5 peppers.

I put one of my surviving yellow bells in the garden bed instead of a pot, so far it is doing fine. The yellow bell is one that is recommended for my area.
Happy gardening in Hawaii. Gardens are where people grow.

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