Both hot and sweet peppers grow well in container gardens. Whether you start the plants from seed or purchase seedlings from a nursery, the peppers require repotting into permanent containers. Home-grown seedlings may require two repottings if you start them in flats and must transplant them to seedling pots when they are still young. Proper repotting ensures the peppers aren't damaged in the process and that their new homes provide for all their needs.
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Things you need
- Potting mixture
Choose the proper pot for the pepper plant. Use a 5-inch diameter pot for seedlings that are less than 8 inches high. Use a 3- to 5-gallon pot if you plan to grow the pepper to maturity in the container. Choose a pot with at least one drainage hole in the bottom.
Fill 3/4 of the pot with a lightweight potting mixture. Use a soil-less mixture containing peat moss, compost and perlite to provide a sterile environment and proper drainage.
Water the pepper in its existing pot until the moisture begins draining from the bottom. Thump the side of the pot with your palm to loosen the soil from the sides of the pot.
Place your hand over the top of the pot with the pepper stem emerging from between your fingers. Turn the pot upside down. Slide the plant and root ball out of the pot and into your hand.
Set the pepper into the new pot. Add or remove soil under the root ball to adjust the planting depth of the pepper. Position the plant so the top of the root ball sits 3 to 4 inches below the rim of the pot.
Fill the pot around the pepper with additional soil, until the soil surface is 1 inch below the rim of the pot. The pepper should be planted 1 to 2 inches deeper than it was in its old pot.
Water the soil in the new container until the excess begins to drain from the bottom. Add additional soil to the pot if necessary, as watering collapses any air pockets around the pepper's roots.
Tips and warnings
- Potted peppers require frequent fertilisation. Use a half-strength soluble fertiliser every two weeks.
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