How to grow chili peppers from cuttings

Updated February 21, 2017

Most chilli plant varieties originated in South and Central America, according to the website Future Garden. The plants are a common choice for vegetable gardens and even for indoor container gardens. Although most pepper plants, including the chilli, propagate quickly from seed, you can also grow them from plant cuttings. A chilli cutting is a stem cut from an existing plant and planted until it sprouts roots.

Locate an existing chilli pepper plant and cut off one of the stems near the base of the plant, using hand pruners. Look for stems with no peppers but with at least two sets of leaves.

Fill a medium-sized bowl with nutrient solution designed for hydroponic plants. Mix the nutrient solution with distilled water as directed by the instructions.

Cut the rockwool planting cups apart, using scissors, if applicable. Some rockwool cups are sold individually, while others are attached to one other in multiples.

Insert one rockwool planting cup into the bowl and hold it down for five to 10 seconds.

Remove the rockwool planting cup from the water and squeeze the sizes together gently to remove the excess moisture.

Place the rockwool planting cup into a 454 g (16 oz) plastic cup to add stability and catch excess water runoff.

Insert the pepper cutting into the top of the rockwool planter by holding the top slit open with the tip of a knife and sliding down the cut end of the stem as far as it will go.

Insert the entire cup into a 3.8 litre (1 gallon) size plastic storage bag and seal it up to prevent moisture from evaporating.

Place the bag in a location that receives indirect sunlight until you see roots start to grow through the rockwool.

Fill a 10 to 12.5 cm (4 to 5 inch) diameter pot with potting soil until it is three-quarters full. Dig a hole in the centre of the soil approximately the same size as the rockwool. Cut away the exterior of the rockwool cup using scissors and place the chilli pepper cutting into the hole. Fill in the hole so roots of the cutting are completely covered.

Water the soil until it is completely moist.


Rockwool is also available in small, loose cubes that you can place into a plant pot instead of soil. When cutting away the rockwool, be careful not to cut any of the chilli pepper roots. You can plant the pepper seedlings outside when temperatures are above freezing.

Things You'll Need

  • Hand pruners
  • Rockwool planting cups
  • Scissors
  • Medium-size bowl
  • Distilled water
  • Hydroponic nutrient solution
  • 454 g C(16 oz) plastic cup
  • Knife
  • 3.8 litre (1 gallon) size plastic storage bag
  • Plant pot
  • Potting soil
  • Water
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About the Author

Kimberly Johnson is a freelance writer whose articles have appeared in various online publications including eHow, Suite101 and Examiner. She has a degree in journalism from the University of Georgia and began writing professionally in 2001.