Some common mistakes new gardeners make is not having the bell pepper plant spacing correct or planting too soon. Try out this bell pepper plant spacing for higher yields.
Why Does Bell Pepper Plant Spacing Matter?
Bell pepper plants need to be planted at the right distance so they can grow properly. Plant them too far apart and you are wasting valuable real estate in your garden beds. Planted too close together and there won’t be enough room to allow air circulation, which in turn will cause the young plants to get diseases. However, when the bell peppers are planted at a good distance, semi-close together, they act as a wind break and allow shade for each other to protect the peppers from sun scalding.
Before planting pepper seedlings, you need to make sure they will be planted in a good location in home gardens. The soil temperature needs to be at 70 degrees F during the day before being placed in well-drained soil. A sandy loam soil is perfect . Both hot peppers and sweet peppers need full sun. Do not plant hot peppers next to sweet peppers or the sweet will have some spice to them when you harvest.
Good companion plants for sweet bell peppers are basil and okra.
When to Plant Bell Peppers
If you want to grow bell peppers from seed, start 8 to 10 weeks before your average last frost date. However, to transplant bell pepper seedlings, wait 2 to 3 weeks after any threat of frost has passed. Cold temperatures will kill pepper plants really fast so planting peppers should be waited to do until you can guarantee the planting time is safe. Don’t forget to harden off plants before transplanting to avoid transplant shock.
Bell Pepper Plant Spacing
After pepper seeds have grown into transplants and the nighttime temperatures won’t kill off your peppers, you can plant the transplants into your home garden. It is best to transplant on a cloudy day.
A seed packet spacing guidelines will tell you bell pepper plant spacing is 12 to 18 inches apart in each row. Space the rows 2 to 3 feet apart.
However, I have had better luck with bell pepper plant spacing being closer together. About 10 inches apart is what I find to be the right spacing.
Planting pepper transplants that close provides better windbreaks, giving the fruit production the best chance to succeed.
Dig a hole 3 to 4 inches deep.
Gently squeeze the container holding the pepper plants. All in one motion, flip the container upside down and remove plant.
Take the root space and fluff very lightly. Be gentle as they are very delicate.
Place pepper plant into the hole. Push soil down firmly but not too hard around pepper plant. Pushing too hard will push all the air out of the soil.The base of the plant should come up to the soil surface.
Pepper Plant Support
Using a store bought tomato cage is perfect to help keep the pepper plant strong and upright. However, tying the pepper plant to a stake works as well.
Growing Pepper Plants
Here are some tips to grow productive plants.
- Water regularly. Pepper plants need at least an inch of water per week. Water in the evening for best results. Soaker hoses are great for uniform soil moisture.
- A row cover or black plastic mulch can be used to increase warmth.
- Check the temperature of the soil before transplanting. It should not be below 70℉.
- If the roots are any color other than white when you pull them out of their seed container, that means they’re not fully developed yet. Let them stay in the container another week or so before planting.
There are a bunch of different pepper varieties to try growing in your own garden. Make sure there is proper spacing in between each variety so they don’t affect each other. Green bell peppers should not be planted next to jalapeño peppers. The green peppers won’t be sweet anymore. That is why it is crucial there is enough space between varieties in your vegetable garden. New gardeners may make the mistake of planting spicy next to sweet. Even planting cayenne peppers next to jalapeno peppers can affect taste.
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