Can't grow bell peppers

Discussion and tips for growing all types of peppers
Tallylassie
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Re: Can't grow bell peppers

#21

Post: # 54250Unread post Tallylassie
Mon Sep 20, 2021 4:48 pm

For years, I grew Cal Wonder and Yolo. Just grew a few little peppers. Then I tried Italian frying peppers. Wow! A couple of years ago, I gave away large bags of peppers to friends. Cubanelle also produce well for me through the heat. The rain and humidity spoil the paprika types which I am going to try to grow this fall before freezing weather and after the rains end.

I think hot peppers are probably the most productive for my climate and the healthiest plants, but I still want sweet peppers. I don't think I will ever try to grow another Cal Wonder. There are so many sweet non bell varieties with better taste, in my opinion.
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mama_lor
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Re: Can't grow bell peppers

#22

Post: # 54288Unread post mama_lor
Tue Sep 21, 2021 4:27 am

Also, I think bell peppers are a fairly new addition, they don't have that much history, so old varieties are really not that impressive, investing in some hybrids will get much better results.
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JRinPA
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Re: Can't grow bell peppers

#23

Post: # 54346Unread post JRinPA
Tue Sep 21, 2021 3:42 pm

Not much history? It was bell peppers that were known as mangoes when imported as pickled peppers. I know the my old ball book (1972) had instructions for canning mangoes.
https://12tomatoes.com/midwesterners-ca ... s-mangoes/
04.JPG
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Edit: I totally agree though about maybe growing hybrids. I was shocked by the difference in output between "early jalapeno" heirloom peppers and the "jalafuego F1" I grew later.
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JRinPA
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Re: Can't grow bell peppers

#24

Post: # 54381Unread post JRinPA
Tue Sep 21, 2021 10:37 pm

Here's the one I want to try. I remember something like this as a kid, from a family get together.
mangoes.jpg
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OhioGardener
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Re: Can't grow bell peppers

#25

Post: # 54420Unread post OhioGardener
Wed Sep 22, 2021 5:23 pm

I tried something for the first time this year and have been having a bumper crop of heirloom bells for the first time ever. Last year's harvest wasn't that great, but I read that peppers are perennials and decided to dig my mature plants at the end of the season, pot them up, and over-winter them in a bright sunny window. They continued producing indoors almost all winter for me, took a short break when they got neglected a bit in the early part of 2021, and then were already blooming again as mature plants by the time I set them outside. Varieties were CA Wonder, King of the North, Blot, Amprius, Georgescue Chocolate, and Gold Scythian. Giant Marconi, Sireneviy, Biquinho, and Jigsaw also did well over-wintering indoors. I didn't even plant them in the ground this year and just kept them in their 3 and 5 gallon pots and will probably be bringing them in again to see if they'll repeat the performance. The plants I started from seed in January 2021 are just now starting to set a decent amount of fruit and probably won't get many ripe before the end of the season.
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JRinPA
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Re: Can't grow bell peppers

#26

Post: # 54440Unread post JRinPA
Wed Sep 22, 2021 9:19 pm

I'd like to try that some year...
My brother tried that with an eggplant....his wife got very angry when the bugs started hatching in the living room. Here, there are zero bright sunny windows over winter, due to the house and neighborhood layout.
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OhioGardener
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Re: Can't grow bell peppers

#27

Post: # 54452Unread post OhioGardener
Thu Sep 23, 2021 2:02 am

JRinPA wrote: Wed Sep 22, 2021 9:19 pm I'd like to try that some year...
My brother tried that with an eggplant....his wife got very angry when the bugs started hatching in the living room. Here, there are zero bright sunny windows over winter, due to the house and neighborhood layout.
Fortunately we didn't have any problems. Maybe it was because I washed much of the garden soil off and used fresh potting mix. That's probably a good tip for the ones I overwinter this year since they're already potted.
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Shule
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Re: Can't grow bell peppers

#28

Post: # 55266Unread post Shule
Fri Oct 08, 2021 12:03 am

Cole_Robbie wrote: Thu Sep 16, 2021 10:11 am I did a lot better with expensive hybrid seeds, compared to open pollinated bells.
Did you happen to grow Big Bertha F1? That one seemed pretty easy for me. I haven't tried many other F1 hybrid peppers.
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Cole_Robbie
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Re: Can't grow bell peppers

#29

Post: # 55288Unread post Cole_Robbie
Fri Oct 08, 2021 11:48 am

Shule wrote: Fri Oct 08, 2021 12:03 am
Cole_Robbie wrote: Thu Sep 16, 2021 10:11 am I did a lot better with expensive hybrid seeds, compared to open pollinated bells.
Did you happen to grow Big Bertha F1? That one seemed pretty easy for me. I haven't tried many other F1 hybrid peppers.
I think so. Red knight and early sunsation come to mind as well.
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zeedman
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Re: Can't grow bell peppers

#30

Post: # 58077Unread post zeedman
Wed Nov 24, 2021 10:42 pm

I'm in the 'bells don't work for me' camp as well. I've tried orange, yellow, brown, and several red; few peppers set, and most of those rotted before they could mature. The year that I got one pepper total from 6 plants - and all other peppers produced well - I gave up on them. IMO large bell peppers have been over-bred, and in the process become temperamental. It may be that with some of the measures listed here I could get a few (they sound logical)... but I have a large garden, and don't have time to expend that much effort on individual plants.

I usually tent my peppers for seed saving though, and that has the added benefit of reducing or eliminating sun scald. Pimento peppers and large conical peppers are far less temperamental, and really thrive in the tents. "Greygo" (large pimento) and "Elephants Ear" (large conical) are both large, thick walled, and have been very reliable. So have several of the cream-to-orange-to-red European peppers, such as "Taltos" and "Bacskia", although those tend to ripen late. These all thrive with no extra care other than the leaves, grass clippings, and wood ashes turned under in the Fall, and a light fertilizer application when flowering starts. But I often pinch off the first flowers or fruit if I'm late getting the tents up, and that lets the plants get larger before fruit set & allows them to support more peppers.

Regardless of the peppers grown (at least for sweets) I heartily recommend tenting or caging, under light material. For all the peppers I've grown, the caged peppers vastly out-performed those grown unprotected. Besides reducing sun scald, the environment within the tent/cage seems to increase blossom set. The only problem I've encountered with the tented peppers is if the cover is closed too long, aphids can get out of control. Once enough peppers have set (usually about 3 weeks) I open the downwind side of the cage, and predators quickly take care of the aphids. Growing cowpeas or yardlong beans near the peppers is helpful to attract those predators.
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peebee
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Re: Can't grow bell peppers

#31

Post: # 58129Unread post peebee
Thu Nov 25, 2021 6:58 pm

The only way I can grow bells is in an Earthbox or any self watering container. I tried for years, different varieties, in ground & pots. Nothing worked till this way. I grew Yolos this past summer, had quite a nice harvest. Same holds true for eggplants.
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Bower
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Re: Can't grow bell peppers

#32

Post: # 58329Unread post Bower
Mon Nov 29, 2021 4:27 pm

Add me to the list of people who got not enough bells to make it worth the effort. I agree 100% that smaller peppers, somewhat thinner walled, are way better tasting as well as producing far more. That being said, I also get way higher yields of hot peppers - more than you can eat, while I never seem to have a surplus of sweet peppers.
I agree with mama_lor that pruning for long season production is probably the way to grow big bells. I thought I read about this - growing bell peppers as a tall greenhouse crop - from omafra in ontario but google gave me this similar page from alberta:
https://www.alberta.ca/production-of-sw ... ppers.aspx
Training them vertical in a controlled environment for a long season... well I guess it works, but you know the bells in the supermarket are probably grown this way and I have nothing good to say about em. So watery, it might as well be a cuke. I really think the bell has been produced at the expense of flavor but perhaps that's because I didn't manage to make any home grown.
Meanwhile the incredibly dense sweet flesh of a pimento or cheese type OP is really worth the taste, even if they are small.
There are also some thinner walled and tastier peppers close to or bell shaped but smaller, and good producers for a short season, like Petit Marseillais and Frank's which did quite well for us here.
I like the long shaped peppers best for yield, which are generally thin walled fryers, Jimmy Nardello is a favorite, Italian Pepperoncini from west coast seeds is probably my top favorite for being very tasty and producing lots.
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Shule
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Re: Can't grow bell peppers

#33

Post: # 58332Unread post Shule
Mon Nov 29, 2021 4:53 pm

@Bower
All the green bell peppers I had in the 80s and 90s (garden or grocery store) were pretty flavorful. It's extremely difficult to find any like that now. Maybe it's just my tongue, but I think there's a difference.
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