Main menu



How to grow Chili Pepper plants from seeds at home 2022

How do you take care of a chilli plant - Are Chili Peppers easy to grow - How long do chillies take to grow - What is the best way to grow chilli plants.

How to grow Chili Pepper plants from seeds

Growing chillies at home is simple, and there are numerous varieties to pick from. There's a chilli pepper seed for every occasion, whether you want flavour, heat, or colour. Chilies grown at home might be beautifully mild or scorching fiery. They're extremely adaptable, as they can be grown on sunny windowsills, in a greenhouse, or straight in the ground. They're also fantastic for pots, and the brightly coloured fruits add a splash of colour to conservatories and patios.

How to choose the best chilli pepper

Capsaicin, a substance found in chilli peppers, stimulates nerve endings in your mucous membranes, which is why they feel hot when you bite into one. The amount of heat produced is determined by the plant's variety, maturity, and growing conditions.

The Scoville Scale is used to determine how hot each chilli is. Mike Smith, a Welsh fruit producer, accidently grew the world's hottest specimen in 2017. Experts estimate that only one of his 'Dragon's Breath' chillies, with a Scoville rating of 2.48 million, is enough to cause anaphylactic shock!

- Medium-hot jalapeno, great for salsas and pizza toppings.

- Padron - select small and green for a medium heat or leave to mature to a lot hotter red for a much hotter heat. Stir fry are a fantastic way to use this tapas pepper.
Heatwave Improved Mix is both hot and gorgeous.

Demon Red is a fiery dwarf cultivar intended for windowsills and containers.

Tropical Heat - a fiery mix of red and orange 'Habenero' peppers from the Caribbean, as well as yellow and red 'Scotch Bonnets'.

How to grow chillies from seed

The months of January and February are ideal for starting your chilli pepper seeds inside. Although you can spread the seeds till the end of March, sowing them early provides your chilies plenty of time to ripen before the summer ends.

The hottest types require the most time to grow. Don't worry if you didn't give yourself enough time to start from seed this year; you may also buy chilli plants. Here's how to start growing chillies from scratch:

- Start your seeds indoors because they require a lot of heat to germinate.

- Fill a seed tray or 10cm pots halfway with damp seed compost and flatten them out.

- Cover with a fine sprinkling of vermiculite or compost and sow a few seeds on top.

- Place in a propagator at 18-25 degrees Celsius (64-77F). Use polythene to cover your seed trays and place them on a sunny windowsill or in a warm airing closet if you don't have a propagator.

- After 7-10 days of germination, you can transplant your seedlings to a warm, sunny windowsill (or heated greenhouse).

Maintain an equal moisture level in the compost, but don't allow it become soggy.


How to transplant chilli pepper plants

When your chilli seedlings are large enough to handle without breaking, gently transplant them from seed trays to individual compost pots and continue to grow them until all danger of frost has passed. You can transfer them to their final location once they've grown large enough, which is normally in May.

Chilies can be grown singly in 2 litre containers or in three-plant grow bags. In a warm greenhouse, conservatory, or polytunnel, place the pots or growbags undercover.

Alternatively, place your chiles in a sunny, sheltered location outside. Allow your plants to gradually acclimate to outdoor conditions for 7 to 10 days before transplanting them into well-prepared beds of fertile, moist, and well-drained soil. In the ground, position your chilli pepper plants 50cm (20") apart.

During the growing season, water your chilli plants often, and once the first fruits have set, feed them weekly with a high-potash tomato fertiliser. Also, keep in mind:

- To encourage greater branching and a better yield, pinch out the growing tip of the initial flowering shoots.

- Water on a regular basis but in moderation. It's better to keep your soil somewhat dry because straining your chilli plants encourages them to produce hotter peppers. Staking may be required for taller chilli pepper types.

- Mulch around the base of the plants with a thick layer of organic matter to help preserve moisture and prevent weed growth.

Is it possible to grow chillies indoors? Remember to leave windows and doors open to allow insects access to the blooms for proper pollination. Hand-pollinate the chilies by going from flower to flower and poking the centre of each with a fine artist's paint brush.

When to harvest chillies

To ripen correctly, chilies demand warmth and lengthy sunny days. This shouldn't be an issue with an early sowing, but later sowings in the UK may leave your peppers feeling the chill as the summer days shorten.

Around July, the chillies are ready to be harvested. The more chilies you pick, the more your plant will produce. You may want to leave chillies on the plant a little longer at the end of the season, allowing them to grow until they have a deep red colour and a strong flavour. Wait until you're ready to slow down before doing this, as it will tell the plant to produce less fruit.

Bring your plants indoors and let them ripen on a warm sunny windowsill if the weather starts to cool before your crop has fully ripened. Harvest the chilies one at a time using secateurs to snip them from the plant. Outdoor chilli peppers must be collected before the first frost.

How do you store chillies?

You may either dry or freeze your chillies to keep them fresh over the winter:

- To dry chilli peppers, tie the stems together on some string with a needle to form a "daisy chain." Allow them to air dry for 4 to 5 weeks in a warm, well-ventilated area.

- How to Freeze Chilli Peppers: Freeze chillies in freezer bags as soon as possible after collecting them. The flesh of your chillies will soften slightly after defrosting, but don't panic; they'll taste just as excellent as when you plucked them.


table of contents title