I have for many years been growing chillies in pots at home. The seeds or young plants can be planted in spring. Spring is September here in South Africa.
Care should be taken with the young seedlings to protect them from any frost that can still appear in the early spring months.
Soil mixture for growing chillis
As mentioned before – I have always grown the chilli plants in pots as I like to move them around.
The soil mixture I use is always half good grade potting soil and half compost. Mix the two well and fill the pots.
When I grow the chillies from seed I plant the seed directly in the pots. I find this less stressful. Replanting the plants, I feel puts a strain on the young plants. I make small holes with my finger about 30 mm in depth, drop the seed in and cover.
Growing Chillies Plant Care
As the plants grow they get thirstier and thirstier as the weather hots up.
During the hot days give them a good watering at least once a day or when the leaves start to droop.
In a few weeks you will notice the white flowers appearing and your chilli bush is in business 🙂
Aphids taking over the plant
Unfortunately Aphids are a curse that hits most chillie bushes. They are small little soft bodied green insects that cover the leaves. No reason to panic, they are easy to get rid of.
In a spray bottle filled with water and a few drops of dish washing soap gently spray the leaves on the top and bottom. Do this every day for about a week and the little guys will be gone.
Harvesting the Chillies
Once the chillies turn a lovely dark shade of green you can start picking and using them. They are hot but lack the sweet taste of the matured red fruit.
Your plant will keep producing the white flowers that eventually grow into a chillie – the more you pick, the more they will make.
End of the growing season
Unfortunately, as hot as what the summers are here in SA, just as cold the winter gets in Gauteng. The plants will start loosing their leaves as the cold settles in. If you are able to protect the plant during the winter and keep it out of the frost it will come back to life the following spring.
I prefer growing new chilli plants each season.
My secret ingredient in Growing Chillies
A few years ago the friendly people and Hecker Nursery introduced “Multisol K” to me. I use it, diluted in the water, once a week to water the chilli plants.
It makes the plant green and lush and helps with the fruit growth. Definitely a product to use.
Growing Chillies as easy as that
Its as easy as that to grown your own chilli plants in pots at home. If you are an enthusiast like me please leave comments below and we can share ideas and tips.