Thai Chile Peppers & Parsley Competing Conditions
Answered by: Ginny
Question from: Casey
Posted on: October 22, 2012

I am a horticulture student. Recently for a project we grew Thai chile peppers and parsley. I was hoping you could give me some basic growing tips for these two crops. Our parsley was a fairly easy crop to grow, required little attention and were able to achieve a quality crop with a basic watering schedule and basic fertilizing after transplanted into 4" pots. The peppers however took almost a month to germinate and were quite small. Our project did not last long enough to see actual pepper production and we treated them fairly similar to the parsley. I was hoping you could just give me some basic facts on what environment or watering or fertilizing techniques could have produced a better crop.

Thai Chile Peppers and Parsley do require quite different circumstances for growing. Your Parsley did well, which indicates to me that the growing conditions were on the cool side. Parsley germinates in about a week to two weeks, when the medium is kept moist and the temperature is about 21 degrees Celsius. Still, the seeds and seedlings will do well at even lower temperatures. You can use a good 20-10-10 fertilizer on this plant, as you want to promote vegetative growth.

Thai Chile Peppers, however, prefer much warmer growing conditions. They also require a longer growing season, as you discovered when your plants did not have time to set fruit. Start the pepper seeds in March/ April with a heat of at least 21 degrees celsius. The seeds will take 2-4 weeks to germinate. If you can provide temperatures of 25-29 degrees Celsius for the seedlings, you will find better growth. A fertilizer with higher in phosphurus, such as 10-15-10 is suitable for fruit set, and added calcium is a true benefit. When planting seedlings outside, it is important to be sure the soil has warmed considerably, and that there is no risk of frost. Peppers will set fruit best when nights are as low as 12 degrees Celsius, and days are 21 degrees and above. This technique can be employed with greenhouse growing, where there is more control over the environment.

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