Chilli peppers are fun to grow from seed with the many shapes and varieties available but seedlings can sometimes be tricky to get off to a good start. You may often ask yourself “why aren’t my peppers growing?” » and be tempted to throw the whole bin into the compost.

I’ve been starting chili peppers indoors for a few years and have finally figured out the best ways to avoid the biggest problem growing chili peppers and get the results everyone wants – good lateral growth and strong stems and thick.

First of all, be aware that peppers can take a long time to germinate. Don’t expect to see green until about 2 weeks after sowing the seeds.

Discover 5 secrets to growing chili peppers from seeds below.

1. Sow two pepper plants per pot

Peppers grow well on their own but are more productive if you plant two together. I started the peppers separately in pots and then grouped them together when it was time to move them to larger pots.

Stem growth is not affected and the plants will be very healthy.
Growing chili peppers from seeds is not an impossible task! Even a beginner can grow a lot of peppers in his vegetable garden, put the odds in your favor with seeds and good quality soil.

2. Start chili peppers from seed indoors 8 to 10 weeks before the last frost date.

When is the best time to start chili peppers? Ideally, you’ll start seeds indoors 8 to 10 weeks before your last frost date, harden them off to survive outdoors the week after your last frost date, then plant them in the ground the following week.

Chili peppers have a longer growing season, so if you garden in areas with fairly short warm spells, you should start them within that time frame. This often means starting mid-February early March, hardening them off mid-May, then putting them in the garden in late May or even early June.

Of course, they will get quite large and you will have to maintain them but you will be able to harvest peppers throughout the season, as opposed to one pepper at the end of summer.

3. Maintain Good Grow Light (or Use a South-Facing Window)

Nobody likes seedlings with long, thin stems! (Seedlings with long thin stems are when your plants are stretched out because they are trying to reach the light source). You can avoid this fate for your plants by keeping a grow light just 2 to 5 cm away.

If you grow your peppers on a south-facing window, you won’t have to move the light but you will need to move the plant. Reposition your pepper plants every few days so they don’t lean to one side. You’ll probably turn them every day after they first germinate, then every few days once they get a little more established.

4. Pinch (cut) the chili peppers at the 8 to 10 leaf stage

Want strong stems and lots of lateral growth? So, you need to prune your pepper plants! When the plant reaches the 8 or 10 leaf stage, cut off the last 2 to 4 leaves on the top of the plant.

Yes, you’ll probably feel like a plant killer for pruning your plants like this. But I promise you’ll be rewarded with thick stems, a bushy chili plant, and lots of fruit!

5. Plant in the right place in the vegetable garden

Once you’ve grown that perfect chili plant from seed, your work isn’t done! Chili peppers don’t grow very tall and like as much sun and heat as possible. Plant them in a container or area of ​​the garden that receives 6 or more hours of sun per day, in the warmest location possible. (Unless you live somewhere really hot.)

If you have access to a greenhouse or tunnel, giving your peppers some of this valuable tool will help you grow much better peppers. The peppers benefit from the extra heat and have a much better chance of getting bigger.