If you love peppers, something you might have considered after eating one is if you can grow them yourself.
When eating a pepper, you have probably noticed all of the seeds that are in them, so can you just plant these and have your own peppers?
Turns out yes! Peppers are actually one of the easiest vegetables to grow straight from a seed, however, there are some factors that you will want to keep in mind if you want the best chances of success!
You can grow peppers from the seeds, even if you buy the pepper that the seeds are from at a supermarket. But what you should note is that you will ideally want the seeds to be from a pepper that is ripe.
If you are getting seeds from a pepper that is green or unripe, these will not have fully developed seeds, and because of this they have a relatively low germination rate.
This is why you want to let your pepper ripen when it is off the plant, like on the counter, which will increase the quality of the seeds.
The seeds from a pepper can be put straight into soil, or just any potting mix or growing medium you have. You will not need to dry out the seeds first either.
However, if you do want to store the seeds, it is recommended that you dry them first. You can dry these seeds for at least a few days, and this will prevent them from getting moldy later down the line.
If you want to plant your own peppers, there is some advice to follow that will drastically improve your results, so we have put this guide together so you know what you are doing when planting your own peppers, so keep reading!
Can You Plant Pepper Seeds Store Bought?
Yes! It is completely possible to plant your own peppers using peppers that you have bought from a store.
However, as mentioned in the introduction, you will want to ensure that the pepper is ripe before using its seeds.
If your pepper is not ripe, the viability of the seed to actually be able to sprout is quite low. Because of this, we strongly recommend using seeds from a pepper that is nice and ripe.
If the pepper was picked when it was not ripe, you can still let it ripen on your countertop before you get the seeds from it.
So, if you have a ripe bell pepper, or a cayenne pepper, or a habanero, can you really just plant them normally and get good results?
Turns out you can, however, you might not get the exact same pepper from the one that you plant.
For example, your peppers can actually quite easily cross pollinate if they have been grown close together, and the peppers you find in a store are not isolated, so there is a chance that there could be some cross pollination.
However, this will not affect the peppers that you have harvested, however it will create crossed seeds and these could grow into a hybrid plant when grown.
Because of this, planting a pepper seed from the store can actually be pretty fun since you do not always know what you are going to get as a result (see also: Knowing How And When To Thin Radishes For Best Results).
The cross pollinated pepper can often end up tasting amazing, and then you can save the seeds from this and then replant them.
If you do this, the peppers will eventually stabilize over the generations of planting seeds. This means you could end up with your own unique variety of pepper!
Can You Plant Pepper Seeds From Green Peppers
Technically you can grow peppers from seeds from green peppers, however, because these peppers are not fully ripe, there is a much lower germination rate, so growing peppers from these is a lot more difficult.
For example, a green bell pepper or a jalapeño have a much lower germination rate from a riper variety. But this does not mean that you should not try.
You can just plant a lot more and see what you end up with. This means that even if only 5% of the peppers end up sprouting, you will still end up with a good amount of peppers!
Can I Grow Peppers Using Fresh Seeds?
There are actually quite a few misconceptions about preparing the seeds from peppers for planting.
For example, some people think that pepper seeds need to be fermented like the seeds from tomatoes, however, this is not the case.
You can simply take pepper seeds straight from a pepper and then plant them in a potting mix, or whatever soil you have. But, this is not the same if you want to save your pepper seeds to save in the next season.
If you do want to save your pepper seeds, you will need to dry them first, if you dry them first, this will stop them from getting moldy, or from sprouting early, and then getting moldy.
The best way to dry your pepper seeds so you can keep them from getting moldy is to dry them in a paper towel for at least a few days, but preferably around a week, and then you can transfer them to a plastic bag that you keep in a dry and cool environment where it will not be exposed to any light either.
These seeds can be stored for around 2 to 5 years if you have dried them properly, however, do not keep them much longer after this window!
How Long Will It Take To Grow Peppers From Seed?
Now you know where and how you can grow peppers using the seeds from peppers, you probably want to know how long it will take to grow them.
It is worth noting that depending on how you are growing your peppers,(see also: Can I Grow My Jalapeno Peppers In A Pot? A Handy Guide) the time it will take for them to grow will change, so keep this in mind.
You can actually find that if you grow peppers in good conditions, you can find them sprouting in just a few days after they have been planted, however, this can sometimes take a few weeks as well, but this all depends on conditions and the types of peppers you are working with.
For example, some peppers can take about 3 months to spout.
After the pepper has sprouted, then of course you have to wait longer for the pepper itself to develop.
This will of course depend on the variety and the species of the pepper, for example, it can take about 3 months for the sprout to develop into a green pepper you can eat, and then it can take anywhere between 1 and 3 more months to develop into a ripe pepper that you can harvest seeds from.
With some smaller types of peppers like Cayenne or Thai peppers, these will ripen pretty quickly, and if you choose to pick them while they are green to eat or cook with, then you will be able to have a pretty continual harvest on a 3 month rotation.
Of course, if you are working with larger peppers, this will not be as simple and they will take a lot longer to get ripe.
For example, the variety of pepper that takes the longest time to grow (see also: The 7 Best And Biggest Jalapeño Varieties To Grow (Getting The Seeds)) is the Capsicum chinense type of pepper. These are some of the hottest peppers out there like ghost peppers, Carolina Reapers, or habaneros.
Is It Possible To Make Peppers Grow Faster?
If you are tired of having to wait so long for your peppers to grow, then you probably want to know if there are any methods to try that will increase the speed at which your peppers are growing.
One of the most popular methods for this is growing your peppers using hydroponics.
This will make your peppers grow and produce quite rapidly, however this will not increase the speed of the ripening process, so keep this in mind.
There are many different ways to grow plants hydroponically, but we recommend checking to see if doing this indoors or outdoors is better in your location.
Now, if you want your peppers to ripen quicker, there are some different methods you could try.
The most common method for this is to constrain the space to grow your pepper, with a common example of this being planting it in a pot that has less room to grow.
If a plant is able to realize that it does not have that much space left to grow, even if it is relatively small, it will start to prematurely produce its flowers, and then produce ripe fruit.
However, keep in mind that this method might have some drawbacks as well depending on circumstances.
Hopefully this guide has given you all the information you need on how to properly grow peppers. There are lots of tips and tricks to keep in mind.
However, we recommend ensuring that you are getting pepper seeds from a pepper that is properly ripe, this will increase the germination rate as high as possible and this will ensure that your failure rate is much lower.
We also recommend further researching how to grow peppers in your climate since this will impact the quality of your harvest quite heavily.
Frequently Asked Questions
No, you can use any peppers that you have access to.
No, cooking the peppers will unfortunately kill the seeds that are used.
Yes, but the quality of these seeds vary wildly.
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