Growing Chillies

Growing Chillies In Your Backyard

Many beginner gardeners think that growing chillies is not possible in cooler climates. But this isn’t true. You can successfully start growing chillies – but you will need to start the chilli plants indoors or in a propagator.

Growing Chillies – Sowing Seeds

Fill a tray or a multi-cell seed tray with multi-purpose compost, firm the compost down and water. Either scatter the seeds thinly out in the tray or if you are using a multi-cell tray sow one or two seeds in each cell, lightly cover the seeds with compost. Label the seed trays so that you know what you have sowed.

Place the seed trays either in a propagator or place it inside a clear plastic bag or place the tray somewhere warm (a windowsill or an airing cupboard). Keep an eye on the compost don’t let it dry out to much but you don’t want it over wet either because otherwise the seeds will rot.

Once the seeds start coming up (14 to 21 days) move the trays out of the propagator or airing cupboard and place by a windowsill. Keep out of strong direct sunlight.

When your chilli plants start producing a second set of leaves you can transplant to 3” pots which are filled with multi-purpose compost.

Tip: Different chilli varieties take different times to germinate. Some can take one to three weeks to germinate and other can take up to three to five weeks to germinate.

Growing Chillies – Planting Out

One the chillies are about four to five inches tall you need to plant them on. Either you can plant them in a greenhouse, tunnel or in a larger pot in a warm corner of the garden. If you are planting in a greenhouse or tunnel you can plant them either straight into the soil or in a grow-bag.

growing chilliesIf you have decided to start growing your chillies outside then you need to make sure there is no risk of frost. Harden off the chilli plants before planting them in a 8 or 10” pot. Fill the pot with either with a mixture of garden soil and multi-purpose compost mixed together or just fill the pot up with compost and plant you chilli plant into it.

Water regularly and don’t let the soil dry out, this is especially important when you are growing chillies in pots, as the pots can dry out very quickly.

Once the chilli plant starts flowering, you can feed it with some liquid feed either tomato or seaweed feed will do the job nicely. Feeding will encourage the fruit to develop and also to keep producing more chillies over the summer months.

If chillies are a favourite vegetable of yours then you should definitely start growing chillies in your vegetable garden.

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