Peppers are one of those plants with which, in addition to enjoying their easy cultivation, we can enrich our dishes and menus thanks to much tastier fruits than those we can get in any large area.
You do not need a large plot or a garden, with a good size pot you can grow your own pepper plant on a balcony, terrace or by the window. If you want to learn how to sow pepper seeds, join us in this AgroCorrn article in which we tell you how to germinate pepper seeds and their care .
When to germinate pepper seeds
The best time to germinate your pepper seeds is when the temperatures are warm, but not excessively, around 26 ºC . Depending on the type of climate you live in, this will mean doing it in spring or midsummer, and you may even have to resort to heated germinators in very cold climates.
How to germinate pepper seeds in a hotbed
The most common method of germinating peppers is by means of a seedbed, which you can prepare yourself in a polyexpan tray, in coffee glasses, leaky yogurt containers or in simple purchased seedlings. Follow these steps to germinate pepper seeds in a hotbed :
- To begin with, it will be necessary to get the seeds, which you can buy at any nursery or directly extract them yourself from a pepper of the variety you are looking for. Choose a good fruit from the best bush or plant that you have at your disposal, waiting for it to fully mature before picking it up, when it is totally red. It is also convenient that it is a fruit that gives the first flowers.
- Cut the crown or head of the pepper and, carefully and with your hands, extract the seeds and deposit them on kitchen paper.
- Let the seeds dry in the sun for about 72 hours before germinating or storing them.
- Once the seeds have been selected, prepare your substrate for seedlings. We recommend using the usual mixture, with a part of peat , another of worm castings and a third of coconut fiber , along with a few handfuls of perlite and vermiculite . Fill the seedbed with the mixture, without weighing down the substrate too much, and spread the seeds, then covering them with no more than 1 cm of substrate again.
- abundantly after this, spraying so as not to drag the seed.
- If you live in a cold climate you may need to use a hot bed seedbed, but in warm or temperate conditions it will not be necessary and it will be enough to place it in a warm and illuminated area, but protected from direct sun.
How to pre-germinate peppers on absorbent paper
Germinating pepper seeds in water and absorbent paper is entirely possible and can help ensure that the process is successful.
- Obtain the seeds in the way described above and, if it is dried seeds from another season, leave them submerged for 24 hours before starting the process. When you go to collect them, get rid of the floating ones, which will not germinate.
- Prepare a tupper or similar container and add a layer of absorbent paper, on which you must deposit the seeds to germinate.
- Dampen it and add another layer of absorbent paper, until it is completely moistened but without dripping or soaking.
- Wrap them in aluminum foil to protect them from light, and place the container on top of a mild heat source, such as your router, without resting on it completely.
- Open the container once a day to oxygenate or leave it slightly open and re-moisten as needed.
- In a very short time the roots will have appeared and your seeds will be ready to go to the ground or pot.
How long does it take for pepper seeds to germinate?
Depending on the variety and the method used the times can vary widely. The pregerminated method or with a warm bed germinator, in less than a week the seedlings of peppers will begin to appear.
Without them, however, the pepper can take several weeks to sprout , so do not rush to get rid of your seeds thinking that they will not grow if you have used other methods.
Caring for sprouted pepper seeds
Follow these simple cares for sprouted pepper seeds :
- Once the seeds have germinated, the ideal is to transplant them to the seedbed if they were not already.
- Keep them constantly moist, always without flooding.
- Move them to a warm location and with as much light as possible to prevent them from fuming, but always with indirect light.
How to plant peppers in pot and soil
Follow these tips for planting peppers :
- When your pepper seedlings measure about 15 cm, they will be ready to be transplanted to their final location, either outdoors or in a pot.
- Peppers need rich soil, so use potted seedling mix, or add humus or compost to the soil if you plant outdoors.
- Use pots that are at least 12 inches deep, with drainage holes.
- Transplant with care not to damage the plant, keeping the substrate of the seedbed if you do not look safe by removing the small root ball.
Here you can learn much more about how to plant peppers step by step .
These are the main care that your pepper plant needs:
- Light: at least 6 hours of sun, direct incidence.
- Water: they need a lot of humidity, padding is recommended to retain it better. We also recommend reading this other post on When to water the plants .
- Temperature: warm, around 25 ºC.
- Trained: from 20 cm of plant.
- Fertilizer: organic if possible, every 15 days in the warm months.