Growing peppers - when to germinate the seeds?

Discussion in 'Fruit and Veg Gardening' started by crystalblueatmosphere, Feb 16, 2010.

  1. crystalblueatmosphere

    crystalblueatmosphere New Seed

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    I bought several types of hot pepper seeds today and am excited to try growing them. I've never grown peppers before so I was wondering whether it works better with them to germinate the seeds before or after putting them in soil. With most of my herbs I tend to germinate them in soil, but with veggies I tend more toward germinating in wet paper towels and plastic baggies. Which will work best in your opinion?

    moderator's note: added a more descriptive title to topic
     
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  3. cajunbelle

    cajunbelle Daylily Diva

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    I use peat pellets for my peppers and tomatoes, they work great. WalMart carries them and they are inexpensive, I think I got 36 for $2.00.
     
  4. Sjoerd

    Sjoerd Mighty Oak

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    Well CBA, I have never germinated pepper seeds before planting them. I use this pre-planting germination technique for seed types that are especially difficult for me to germinate. Peppers are easy for me.

    I just plant the seeds in seeding soil (in little pots), then put them in an incubator that is sitting on a heating pad. They are usually above ground within a week-week and a half.

    Well that was alot of waffling, wasn't it? :)
    The direct answer to your question is: I believe that it is not necessary to germinate pepper seeds prior to planting them.
     
  5. weeds n seeds

    weeds n seeds Seedling

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    I fully agree with Sjoerd about not needing to germinate the seeds before planting, but please don't despair when they don't "pop" up right away: depending on the pepper strain, germination takes 10-21 days! They do need bottom heat for best results: containers may be placed on top of a fridge, hot water heater or a heat mat til germination occurs (I start mine on top of a 24 inch Gro Lite set up in dining room..bottom heat's just right). To insure plants, do plant your seed a bit on the heavy side (4-5 seeds per pot or cell); cover with 1/4 inch seed starting medium; mist this well to dampen the mix and "settle" the seeds; then cover with a plastic dome or clear plastic bag til germination occurs. Keep soil moist but not soggy. Til seedlings emerge, it isn't necessary to have them in sunlight, but once they're up they WILL need it, a south-facing window is ideal. One other thing: peppers don't appreciate being rootbound, so if started in small cells it may be necessary to transplant them into something larger til it's time to go outside. Large styrofoam cups (inexpensive), with drainage holes punched in the bottoms work beautifully: cups let soil "breath" for root formation, can be easily marked as to what's in them.
    Good luck!!
     
  6. Farmer_Dave

    Farmer_Dave New Seed

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    Peppers how I do it

    I like to plant my peppers in a warm spell in February which in Northern California in my green house is still not warm enough for peppers. So I start them above my wood stove in a pie tin in a paper towel then plant them in a flat and still keep them inside until they are a week or two old depending on the weather. Then I put them in my green house and let them grow until they have their true leaves and are about 2-3 inches tall. I then put them in 4 inch pots which I find sufficient until I transplant them outside in mid to late May. If you have a warm green house or use the heat mats you can get by starting them in pots without the extra step of sprouting the seeds.

    Good luck
    Farmer Dave
     

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