Chillies and Peppers

Chillies and peppers actually seem to prefer growing in pots instead of the open soil, and can make a very attractive feature in your kitchen, conservatory, or against a sunny wall. If you do put them outside, be careful of strong winds and heavy rain. Use a general-purpose fertiliser during the initial growing period.

Sowing time

Sow seed in March. Plant out in June.

How to grow

All chillies and peppers need fertile, well-drained soil, and you can plant them in a 9” pot in John Innes No3 compost, or 3 plants to a growbag. Pot-grown plants will need to be repotted in several stages until they’re are ready to be moved to their permanent containers. Mist the plants regularly to control red spider mite: the plants may also need support if they become top heavy or unstable. Water them regularly, but don’t allow the soil to become too wet, and add a potassium feed with each watering once the fruits have begun to swell.

Harvest the fruits as you need them. Peppers can be picked green, or you can wait for them to turn yellow or red. Chillies can also be picked green, or wait until they ripen – just remember, the riper the fruit, the hotter they become!  You can also dry them for future use, adding dried chillies straight into your cooking, or rehydrating them in water first.