Before two years ago, I had no idea that you could grow peppers in Alberta. I figured they were exclusively a Mexican food or something grown down in Chile. But, lo and behold, Alberta actually grows acres and acres of the things! Who knew? So last spring I tried to grow some seedlings I bought at the grocery store. They were somewhat successful, yielding a handful of hot, skinny yellow peppers.
If the hot peppers grew ok, could the large sweet bell peppers grow here as well? Why not give it a try. So this spring I decided to try my hand at growing some sweet bell peppers from seed.
The three varieties that I decided to try were the Early Prolific, Fat ‘N’ Sassy, and Blushing Beauty. And I must say, I was pleasantly surprised at how well they grew.
I started them in my office (since I don’t have any better indoor growing area) under fluorescent lights that I had bought for that purpose. On April 29th, after several weeks of growing indoors, I transfered them outside to my high tunnel coldframe. I think that was a little too this year – both my peppers and my tomatoes were stunted severally due to the late coldness this spring.
But by and by they grew, and before long there were several large, beautiful bell peppers waiting to be picked. They had a relatively short growing season, but still managed to average about four fruit per plant.
Of the three varieties, I think I liked the Early Prolific the best, though the Fat ‘N’ Sassy weren’t far off. Blushing Beauty was a little small for my liking – but the flavor for all three was great. Next year, I think I may replace Blushing Beauty with Super Heavyweight. But that’s another post for another day.
If you’ve never tried growing bell peppers, give it a try. They’re certainly no more difficult than tomatoes, and they’re sure to taste way better than anything you buy in the grocery store.
4 replies on “Sweet Bell Peppers”
So sorry to find you, 2 YEARS after your success. Have you found a better bell pepper since???
Peopers hate our Seattle weather, so I’m looking for short stature peppers that just grow under fluroescent grow lights. Would you post more detail about how you get Early Prolific peppers to grow?
Do they like wet or dry soil???
What sort of fertilizer and how often???
Thank you so much.
I didn’t end up growing peppers this last year (though I aim to this year), so I haven’t found any better peppers than early prolific. I’ll give you a brief run down on how I grew mine.
I planted my peppers on March 17th under wide spectrum fluorescent lights. They were then transplanted into my cold-frame greenhouse on May 29th. From then on, I treated them exactly the same as my tomatoes. I added no fertilizer (though I had good quality farm dirt) and watered them with a soaker hose on a timer about every two days for two hours. Sometimes I think this was too wet in cooler weather – but they grew fine and produced a crop. Peppers like it hot and will get bitter if the soil dries out too much. Hope that helps you out! Let me know how yours turn out this year!
I am about to grow peppers for the first time, actually everything I am growing is for the first time,lol.
I am using square foot gardening. What is a cold-frame greenhouse? So do you recommend not planting them directly outside into m sfg beds?
Someone told me they needed to be protected from wind otherwise the blooms would blow off? So I was thinking of staking the sides and wrapping plastic around the perimeter to do so. But then someone also told me no need to, just plant them outside and that they like to be really close together.
Cold weather stunted my bell peppers here in the Northeast USA. They neer grew for a month and it still is cool and rainy every day. I pulled the peppers and foound some bugs on the roots. I sprayed them off and replanted them in large black pot. I pured some comfrey tea in the new soil and mix in a good dose of wood ash and some tiny worms came flyng up out of the dirt? After that we finally got warm weather and they grew likw crazy and produce tons of ppeppers.