shaefins
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Why Bring Pepper Plants Indoors for Winter?

Before I go through the trouble of trying to salvage my bell pepper plants that have had 2 nights of frost, what's the benefit to trimming, potting and bringing them indoors for the winter? I guess I'm trying to figure out cost effectiveness, for lack of a better term. What's my gain on the investment of my time and window/light shelf space? LOL!

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applestar
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I do it because I want to see if I can 8)
In all fairness, what I've read indicated that it's mostly very slow germination and maturing hot peppers that people want to overwinter, and not so much bell peppers.

But last year, I brought in an yellow bell pepper in a large pot and it yielded a few small peppers in the middle of the winter. The Jalapeno, which is a much smaller plant and was not cut back at all flowered and fruited all winter. Picture the dark green foliage, white flowers, green and red peppers -- very decorative :wink: And there's nothing like plucking fresh Jalapenos to chop up and add to pasta sauce, to top delivery pizza, or add to store-bought jar of salsa -- in the middle of the winter. :()

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i only save slow growing/special/unique peppers to overwinter. for example this year i have a thai pepper plant out of a group of 30 that stands out in terms of flavor, heat and growth habit. a plant worth saving in both seed and the parent. it just grows a little slow from seed to flower.
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So you've done this before right, soil? When do you expect to be able to start harvesting from the pepper plants in the 2nd -- or later -- year? Will they keep up the production for the rest of the season?

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soil wrote:i only save slow growing/special/unique peppers to overwinter. for example this year i have a thai pepper plant out of a group of 30 that stands out in terms of flavor, heat and growth habit. a plant worth saving in both seed and the parent. it just grows a little slow from seed to flower.
I agree with this. I am bringing a pepper plant indoors for the first time this winter. I wouldn't do it if I weren't determined to give it a chance to produce next summer. I say that if you have a special pepper, maybe one that is an excellent producer or rare or one like Soil's that takes a long time to mature, you should bring it indoors. I am also hoping the pepper I brought indoors eventually flowers and self-pollinates. Then, with no other pepper plant to mess things up, I can be sure the seeds from the pepper will produce a genuine second generation.

Whoops. Had to pause in my typing to dodge that little black bug that just strafed me. They have moved indoors with the pepper I brought in, and I suspect I will be living with them for a long, long time :lol:
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soil
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applestar wrote:So you've done this before right, soil? When do you expect to be able to start harvesting from the pepper plants in the 2nd -- or later -- year? Will they keep up the production for the rest of the season?
i do it every year. i find peppers produce best the second and third year. specially the second. you get a huge jump start on growth because it all comes from old wood. imo it yields more fruit of higher quality too. i cant say it flowers earlier because some people start seeds really early indoors. but you if they do bloom at the same time, the overwintered plant will have much more blooms.

in warmer climates you don't even have to pot up the plants, just leave them in a perennial pepper bed. they can handle down to freezing from my experiences and can maintain growth into the low 40s.

i leave mine in a greenhouse now over winter in 1 gallon pots and plant in spring.

that being said i also start plants from seeds every year. so i always have some 1st year plants, some 2nd and possibly some 3 and older. and i love searching the vast varieties my own seed produces.
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Up north, a lot of peppers are long season and don't have enough time to produce very well the first year if planted from seed, so if you can get them through the winter you get a big boost in productivity the second year from the early start.

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I second what Apps and TZ have said. I brought mine in because because the seed are expense, tough to germinate, and because the plant only put on 2 pepper this year that aren't even ripe yet.

It's also an interesting variety (one of the hottest in the world, but that's another thread :wink: ) that I'd like to carry over for a few years; or at least until I can grow out some seeds from it and see if they bred true. Also, I'd like to try to clone it from some cuttings as well.

However, this is all dependent on them living. They were under buckets when a frost hit and so far, they aren't looking too great. Hopefully they will perk up soon.
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Try giving them some bottom heat, garden5.

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I mainly brought mine in be cause I started late, also the sun tends to disappear around end of october, doesn't come back until about march/april...

I looked into a heatpad for my table, was going to cost me 100 bucks.. plus cost of running it.

I have harvested 3 red sweet peppers, and I have 4 more turning (all from 1 plant) and will have 2 more shortly after those ripen. I had to bring in my 5 cayenne plants, otherwise i would've only harvested about 15 green cayennes, chocolate beauties were unripe, and my sweet cayenne has nothing but yellows on it, needs more time for the 30 or so pods to mature. I have also started a couple plants from seed last weekend, to see if I can get them to grow and produce over winter (2 varieties I got from ajijoe, Fidalga Vermelha, and Piri Piri) The Piri Piri is poking up just today :) Actually I brought in my deep 5 gal bucket full of carrots too. If I get around to it, i will post a picture of my setup for overwintering of my plants, during the day its about 65 degrees or so, unsure of overnight, i will check tonight.

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Do "search the forum" for seed starting and bottom heat. There are other options to the rather expensive commercial heating pads sold for gardening. We go through all the recommendations every seed starting season. :wink:

Inserting the link to this discussion for sidebar reference here:
[url=https://www.helpfulgardener.com/forum/viewtopic.php?p=170508#p170508]Subject: Perennial hot peppers - natural seasonal lifecycle?[/url]
applestar wrote:Where hot peppers grow as perennials, what kind of natural seasonal transition do they go through? Do they drop leaves in fall and stay dormant and bare through the winter? How cold would it get? Or does it never get cold enough for them to deteriorate and do they stay green and productive throughout the year?

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Thanks for the tip, Apps. I'm keeping them over a heating vent in the large bin that the pots are in.

I think the peppers got hit by frost because they are turning soft. Hopefully I'll get some seed from them.
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Winter Pepper Pruning

I just ran across this... bonzai-ing peppers


https://www.fatalii.net/growing/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=95&Itemid=105


I'm posting it here for a couple of reasons

1) I generally don't go to the bonzai forum :shock:

2) The severe pruning looks like what I do to the peppers I over winter. Pull them up by their roots and hack them to stumps. But I put them in bigger pots to recover than the poor things in the pictures.


Anyway, it looks like an artsy craftsy option for plants normaly headed to the compost pile each fall. I have a not-yet-tossed frost killed Bolivian Rainbow on the back porch that might still have some life left in the stump.

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I've potted up a few of my hot peppers with severe top trim like this, but put them in 1/2 gal pots. (when I say 1/2 gal I mean approx. actual volume -- I can't remember the funky industry standard :roll: :wink:)

When you do this, what kind of environment do you keep them? (light, temp, moisture level?) Also, when do you start seeing signs of recovery and new shoots and do you keep those new growth -- which if substantial, I would assume to be pretty wimpy unless you can give them a lot of light -- in late spring/early summer when you plant them out? I'm envisioning a pruning session some time in early spring just before the plants may start growing significant new growth. Is that about right?

Since I'm still working on making room for them in the house, I've had mine in the unheated garage with a shop light on them 16 hrs a day, but the light is nowhere close enough to maintain them. It's starting to get constantly cold outside -- it's 40ºF at floor level in the garage where they are right now and I expect the average temp in the garage to keep going down from here on. So I've started moving some of them inside. ... of course, now I'm second guessing myself that maybe it's better to keep them out there a while longer. Some others are still in their "temporary" plastic grocery bags, unpruned, so I have to get working on that as well. :roll: (If the kids will just get better from their rather bad colds, and I can manage NOT to come down with it!)
Last edited by applestar on Sat Nov 13, 2010 2:35 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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TZ, that's pretty neat.

Apps, how have the plants been doing so far? How long have you had them inside?

Unfortunately, my bhut jolokia plants did not make it, so there will no overwintering of pepper for me this year. At least I can still read about how you all are doing with it :).
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garden5 wrote:TZ, that's pretty neat.

Apps, how have the plants been doing so far? How long have you had them inside?

Unfortunately, my bhut jolokia plants did not make it, so there will no overwintering of pepper for me this year. At least I can still read about how you all are doing with it :).
Garden5, I am so sorry to hear the bhut jolokia plants didn't make it! I know you were really looking forward to keeping them over the winter :cry:

My Frankenchile is doing fine. I seriously cut it way down, like in TZ's thread, and now it's putting out new growth. If it survives another month or so, I'll be thinking about actually dividing it into two plants. I'm crossing my fingers, though. Five more months before it can enjoy a brief stint outside in the sun it craves :shock:
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For overwintering you just want to keep them alive, so houseplant light and temps will do that. They may get leggy, and if they do you can prune them before you put them back in the garden. One post on it a couple of years ago on another forum,.. the guy tried to keep them dormant as long as possible in a cool room with low light...mainly because it was the out of the way space he had available.

I lost most of mine last year because I didn't keep them evenly watered. They would sprout, and then the sprouts would die from lack of water (with the pruned roots they can't pull water from the soil very well and new roots die off in the dry soil). I would water again, get more sprouts etc, but finally they gave up. The ones that lived were in smaller pots and I had better access to them. Hauling 2-5 gallon pots around the house to water was prohibited by laziness and holiday visitors with dogs.

They resprout pretty soon at room temperature (like within a week or two), but I have a commercial small sweet pepper (saved seed from the super market) that seems to be determinant in that it has not shown any sprouts yet, while my habanero and others are already putting out little leaves.

No guarantees. I have two small Cumari plants (habanero relative) that are dropping leaves like crazy and all I did was bring them inside without repotting. It may be a tropical plant thing (cold) or I over watered. I killed the same thing last year.

For the bonzai you would want brighter light and baby them to get roots growing in those little pots.

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OK, thanks, TZ! :D

My 2 minimally pruned (meaning not too severely) and potted in reasonably sized pots and still fruiting Jalapenos in the kitchen window that were brought inside earlier to keep going are doing fairly well. Only issue being that ants have found them and have been bringing aphids to pasture on them. Luckily, several house spiders have hatched and came down from the ceiling to spin tiny webs on them, so I'm letting them do some of the work while I squish any aphids that are where I can reach. I did give these Jalapeno plants an additional pruning since the aphid infestation, trimming any inward growing branches, so I can get in to take care of them better. One has 10 and the other has 5 fruits. I expect them to keep fruiting through the winter the way I saw the other one do last winter, though the extra pruning may or may not have sabotaged that plan.

I have a wimpy looking Fish pepper that were in smallish container through the summer that is also getting hit by aphids. My first bunch of cuttings mostly died due to lack of attention, but I've started some more cuttings and they're under the seed starting lights in the Indoor Seed Starting area used to grow the pepper seedlings in the spring, sitting on the heating mat, and getting regularly misted. Some of their leaves look wilted, but that's better than the last batch that ended up moldy and rotten from overwatering as well as from sitting in their plastic bag covers in direct sunlight (ALL the wrong things you can do to cuttings :roll:) Aphids there again. So they have been soap sprayed and dusted with diatomaceous earth. No fun dealing with all these pests so early in the overwintering garden, but if I get a good handle on them now, maybe I'll have less problems with them later on.

Out of the ones still in garage and in grocery bags, the largest Aji Dulce pepper is starting to yellow and wilt -- too cold? Same with a Cubanell Banana. Others are looking pretty good and a couple that were already potted and that I've brought inside have pretty healthy looking remaining leaves.

I guess I'll just keep going, leave the ones I brought inside to sprout and recover/resume growing, and get around to pruning and potting up the ones out in the garage as I can.

The Aji Dulce had a lot of green fruits that have slowly colored up over the last couple of weeks in the garage. My initial plan was to let them color then harvest, then prune the heck out of the plant, pot up and bring in.

I also have a large Anaheim out there that I definitely want to save. So far, it's looking good despite the temporary bagged roots (i.e. severe root pruning) and only having been pruned to 1/3 of the original top growth (i.e. still 2+' tall). This one doesn't have any fruits, and my vague idea was that if I let it keep the foliage while being out in the cold garage, it might go through the pre-dormancy process of transferring nutrients and energy from the foliage to the roots before I cut away the top branches....

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Stella, thanks for your condolences. I really did want to save the plants until next year. However, I do have some good new regarding the bhut jolokia.

I got seed!

The 3 peppers on the plants that I brought in started to go soft and mushy after a few days, that means they got hit by the frost as well. I took the peppers and harvested the seed.

Two of them were deep orange and each gave up about 50 seeds, almost all of which sunk in water after a few minuets. The third one was green and the seeds did not float, so I don't have very high hopes for them.

There's just one problem, though. I have no idea if they cross pollinated with any other peppers. I'll be making a thread on this subject later. I guess I'll just have to try and see what happens. At 5 seeds for $15, I couldn't afford not to.
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Garden5, that is great news about your seeds! I had no idea that the original seeds cost that much. Man, that seems like a lot of money to spend for seeds. May as well trade a cow for 'em :shock:

I didn't think to sink my seeds. Darn. I did start two of them a week ago. If they're not up in a week, I guess I will know whether or not I got viable ones, right? I will try again, though. It's hard to start seeds at this time of the year in my drafty house!
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Not every seed will be viable stella, I once planted 6 white habanero seeds and all 6 sprouted, but later I started 2 and got nothing. Some seeds are a pain and can take up to 4 weeks to germinate.

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make sure there nice and warm, peppers LOVE heat. i try and keep mine in the high 80s at all times when i start seeds in late winter.
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I think I over-heated one of them last night. Its soil was dry this morning. I am fighting my heating pad situation. I had bought a new pad, but it turned out I bought one of those safety pads that shut off automatically after an hour. After a week of turning it back on every hour after hour, I gave up and dug out my old heating pad from the basement.

Now it stays on all of the time, but I can't get even heat from it. I turned it up yesterday because I thought the pots were a tad cool, and I suspect I turned it up too high. Oh well. One of them stayed moist, and I have plenty of seeds and plenty of time to keep experimenting, just in case I killed the dry one :roll:

Next spring, I am going to buy one of those pads make exclusively for plants!
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One way to compensate for overeager heating device is to insulate the pots with heavier or extra trays, or metal (distributes/dissipates the heat) drip trays, or by raising the pots a little bit higher -- I usually reuse shallow plastic food trays or old slitted broiler pan tray for this (the main broiler pan tray works well as the metal drip tray as do reused aluminum food trays). :wink:

The one pot that dried could be sitting on a hotspot or it may have had less moisture in the soil. For smaller containers of same/similar potting soil mix with similarly sized plants, "hefting" and judging the weight by feel is a good way to get an idea of moisture level of the soil. I do that with seedlings in spring.

Oh, if you DO use aluminum food trays for drip tray, be aware that they sometimes develop pin holes in them -- assuming acid eating away at the thin metal -- so either double the tray with second aluminum or use a secondary back up tray underneath.

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I have them on a cute plastic Christmas tree tray. Normally I use cookie sheets, but this tray made me feel much more festive, walking past and listening to the little guys belt out chorus after chorus of Feliz Navidad :lol:

The one that dried out is on a hot spot on the coil beneath. I should have noticed it sooner. The one in front of it, off the coil, stayed moist, but this one was in the shadow cast by a potted cutting, so I misread its condition.

It may be fine. I doubt it, but it's possible there was moisture underneath. I soaked it as soon as I noticed the problem. Like you, I heft the little pots to check for moisture content. However, I potted these in that Miracle Gro Moisture Control soil, and I think that's skewing my normal ability to assess moisture. The coconut peat seems to make that soil lighter than normal, so a moist plant just doesn't feel as heavy.

I'll know soon enough, I suspect. Generally it takes pepper seeds anywhere from 10 to 16 days to germinate under these conditions. Today is day 7. I shall be watching them both anxiously for the next 3 to 9 days!
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My cuttings lost most of their leaves but I see tiny new growth on about 1/2 dozen of them, and another 1/2 doz. that still look alive, while yet another 1/2doz. cuttings are starting to have yellowed stems which seems like a bad sign. I have been hard spraying with soapy with a few drops of oil home made spray, waiting a while then dilute misting with plain water every day or every other day. I wait until the foliage is dry then put their perforated clear cup plastic covers on them. I think this regular spray/misting routine is helping not only with the aphids which had reached impossible infestation at one point, but with nurturing the cuttings. :D

Some of the inside peppers are showing signs of new growth while most of the garage plants are still doing OK. Aji Dulce is starting to yellow and I'm concerned but hopefully it'll pick up and recover once it's inside. :wink:

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I have four cuttings left out of the six I started. One is losing its leaves but is green in the center; one is hanging in there but may begin losing leaves soon; two look quite promising, with teeny-tiny new growth in the center.

Like you, I've been misting them regularly, once every one to two hours. Late last summer, DigitS mentioned something about a misting propagation tray at a place he used to work. (I think it was DigitS.) It made a lot of sense, so I've been trying that ever since I lost the first two.

What did you use for rooting hormone? The Frankenchile could use a little off the side in a week or two, and I'd like to root anything I remove from it.

What kind of oil are you using in your spray and why? I've been misting mine with a seaweed dilute.

Are the little black bugs aphids? The house has become one big Novemberfest to them now, and I hate the way they buzz me when I am working. You know something? I never, NEVER, see this kind of a bug outside, but the minute I move a plant into the house, they somehow manage to hitch a ride :evil:
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I'm not using rooting hormone. I wanted to see if they would root without. If I were to use any, I would go with willow tea/aspirin water or honey (though I'm avoiding honey right now because of the ants that are trying to pasture their aphids on my plants). There's one other natural rooting promoter that I can't recall right now.

Seaweed spray is a good idea. I recently sprayed them with 10% milk solution because there was a sudden mold outbreak on the soil and some of the dead/decayed leaves. Right now, the soil mix contains compost so I don't think mine needs supplemental nourishment. I *am* including them in the rotation of watering with used coffee grounds soaked filtered water, and they'll get a turn with diluted worm leachate water. I'll probably make small batch AACT later on -- late Jan/early Feb or so when my indoor plants seem to want to start growing new shoots.

Little black bugs.... fungus gnats? My standard attack is vacuuming the flying ones and dusting the soil with cinnamon and watering with chamomile tea. The soapy/oil spray I'm using right now should help as well since they soak into the soil and will kill the adult gnats. I just use few drops of canola oil in my little sprayer bottle or a "dribble" in the quart sized bottle. Shake well before spraying. I know at least in two areas, there are small centipedes living in the pots so they should be eating the gnat larvae.

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applestar wrote: Little black bugs.... fungus gnats? My standard attack is vacuuming the flying ones and dusting the soil with cinnamon and watering with chamomile tea. The soapy/oil spray I'm using right now should help as well since they soak into the soil and will kill the adult gnats. I just use few drops of canola oil in my little sprayer bottle or a "dribble" in the quart sized bottle. Shake well before spraying. I know at least in two areas, there are small centipedes living in the pots so they should be eating the gnat larvae.
Ah ha! I have long wondered what these little black bugs are! Thanks!

I looked them up online. They lay larvae that devour roots; nothing could be worse. No wonder the Habaneros bit the dust that time I tried to over-winter them.

The literature offers many ideas for getting rid of them. The one I do believe I will try first is the potato trick. It says to cut chunks of potatoes into 1.5" chunks and lay them on the surface of the soil. After three days, you chuck the potatoes and, hopefully, the new larvae laid in them by the adults.

Thanks again! I now know what they are, and I have many ideas to rid my house of them :twisted:
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Update: not all peppers act the same.

I am over wintering three differnt species of peppers (C anuum, C. baccatum, and C. chinense). For the most part they respond very quickly to "jump starting". The Bolivian Rainbow that had died back from lack of water before frost, is sprouting after only a week or so. The top looked completely dead when I pulled the plant out of the bucket. I shook all of the dirt off of the roots, cut the stem to 4-5 inches (to what looked like living tissue), set the roots in water for about 2 days and potted it. on the other hand I had a mini sweet pepper (seed saved from a super market pepper) that was pruned and repotted just after frost while it still had live leaves (just like the rest of the peppers I am winterizing). All of the other plants are leafing out out now (a month after pruning), but this sweet pepper has only put out one little leaf and a small sprout from dirt level.

I think that this may be due to some sort of determinant growth characteristic bred into it for commercial harvesting purposes. It may take a while for the hormones to switch off and/or the plant doesn't retain dormant lateral buds.

So what I have learned in the past month is that you may be able to reanimate a "dead" pepper plant well after the top dies off (before a hard freeze), and don't expect modern peppers to act the same way that wilder types do.

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my peppers just took a nice cold night of mid 20's last night in the greenhouse, still alive and kicking.
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Stella, I'm kind of concerned about my ghost pepper seeds, now. I dried them between paper towels for two weeks, but when I went to put them away the other day into envelopes, they looked slightly larger than other pepper seeds, a light brown (instead of yellow) and had tiny open slits in the sides. I can't say all had the slits, and I'm not about to tear open my sealed envelopes to find out :lol:.

I did take five of these seeds (all of which had sank right after being removed by the peppers) and put them in water and none of them sank. I hope some of them are still viable.

In contrast, I took some Chile pepper seeds I'd been drying (that had previously sank) and put them in water. They sank instantly.

I'll just have to wait until seed-starting time and see what happens.
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I have had good germination from floating seeds out of seed packs so don't toss them befor trying. It's hard to tell about the discolored seeds. Discoloration of the seeds within the fruit is often due to Alternaria infection that enters throught the flower end of the plant (follows the pollen in). The inside of the pod may or may not be moldy from this, but it can be passed on through the infected seed. I have a big problem with Alternaria infecting the pods of my habanero-types, not so much with the other peppers.

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i go by color and health of the seed rather than if it floats or not. slightly light and white-ish or a little to dark. they just get tossed into the forest garden as a last chance. i usually get about 90-95% germination.
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garden5
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Thanks for the tips, guys. I'm definitely going to give them a try....for the price of them I can't afford not to :shock:!

Good to know that floaters still sprout. I'm not sure about alternaria, but I do know that the peppers were starting to rot (get mushy) on the plant since they were frost-bitten, so that may have something to do with it.

I'll have to let you all know in about two months how things sprout up :wink:.

Getting them to sprout is only half the battle......once they're up I'll have to wait and hope that at least one of the peppers was not cross-pollinated and still breeds true. Well, one thing at a time.
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applestar
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I lost a few more cuttings but I have at least one (or more) survivor per pot in 7 pots. I somehow lost track of which is which :roll: Don't you hate that? I'd labeled the first set of cuttings very carefully, but when they died and I took additional cuttings, I was pressed for time and got my cuttings and pots mixed up. :oops: The surviving cuttings all have tiny leaves growing on them now. :D The cuttings without bottom heat and seed starting lights are mostly dead -- there's one that is still barely alive. So I'd say bottom heat and 70+°F day time ambient temp (as well as misting and ventilated humidity covers until healthy re-growth) are required for pepper cuttings. I probably would have had higher success rate using rooting agent though I'm satisfied with how these are turning out. 8)

The stub pruned potted peppers are also leafing out. :clap:

The ones in the garage are STILL out in the garage (along with pineapple sages and tropical milkweeds, pomegranates... a seed grown heliotrope and seedling Japanese maple, too). :roll: Still alive, but after todays unseasonable 60°F weather, I'm sure we're going back to normal Dec weather. I did bring in the pots to pot them up in, but didn't get the chance to bring in the compost, garden soil, and sand to make my container mix with.... :? I also have an email query out to an ag co-op to see if they still have organic potting soil and am waiting on their reply. I'll use whichever turns out to be simpler. If the ag co-op has the bagged soil, I'll drive out and will have the chance to get some good quality holiday plants for gifts, and maybe Espoma Citrus-tone for my citruses and avocados... Maybe for the mango and pineapples(?) as well.

The garage plants have 16 hours of single T-12 shop light on them (sideways due to the "temporary" nature of the set up) -- reflected with a couple of windshield sun reflectors behind them :wink: -- and they're not too far from the chest freezer so maybe they're getting a tiny bit of compensating heat from that.
Last edited by applestar on Sun Dec 05, 2010 2:42 pm, edited 1 time in total.

csvd87
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Location: Vancouver Island, Canada

I harvested the final peppers off my Red Beauty, and all but 1 from a "Long Slim Cayenne" which tastes way too much like Doritos Sweet Chili Heat chips... which is awesome. But anyways, I hacked them down to nothing, they should survive the winter however, they do have enough new growth down low. Now to wait a few more days to harvest my Sweet Cayenne, and prune that way back so I can fit more plants on the top shelf. Yay for winter "Gardening"

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applestar
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It IS a lot of fun, isn't it? :D

I was just tending the cuttings and wanted to add that under the same set up as the pepper cuttings, about 50% of Pineapple Sage cuttings and 2 out of 6 Lemon Verbena cuttings have survived and are showing new growth. :-()

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stella1751
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I'm now at a 33% survival rate on my cuttings. Two did not survive the rooting process; I over-watered one :oops: ; another just cocked up its roots and died. Of the two cuttings left, I have high hopes for only one, the other has begun to fade.

Interesting thought: Every last one wanted to put on buds rather than new leaves. I pinched off the buds on the first two rooted cuttings, thinking that would make them concentrate on root growth. They never did put on leaves. I am letting the last one, the one that looks the best, do its own thing. The blossoms are about to open. I will have to pinch them off if they bloom, but I think peppers want to set fruit and become depressed when thwarted.
TZ-OH6 wrote:Discoloration of the seeds within the fruit is often due to Alternaria infection that enters throught the flower end of the plant (follows the pollen in).
I have always wondered what caused that. Thanks!
"Imagination is more important than knowledge." -- Albert Einstein

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applestar
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Stella, you reminded me -- I stuck a couple of cuttings in the same pot as the Quadrato d'Asti Giallo in a big pot. This is the same plant I overwintered last year in the kitchen window. This one's going to be my experimental perennial bell pepper.

The cuttings were another experiment based on the notion that cuttings rooted in the same living soil foodweb community as the mother plant will have an advantage.

Because the large container of soil supplies elevated humidity around them, I didn't use anything to cover the cuttings, though they did get misted almost every morning, especially on days when the container wasn't watered. This container also has my ginger fingers growing in it so it gets watered a bit more frequently than is my usual practice for peppers. I have the container in an upstairs SE facing bedroom which gets pretty warm during the day and is used for no bottom heat/room temp (70~72°F) seed starting in spring.

ANYWAY, enough background! :lol: The two cuttings are still alive with tiny leaves on them that were on the original cuttings (not new growth). One of them flowered but the flower has browned and shriveled.

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