There is a chance that the bell pepper you plant does not grow to the size you expect it to be. Stunted growth in bell peppers is a common problem for people who plant them. But don’t worry, some solutions can put an end to this problem.
If you are here to find out why are my bell peppers so small, then keep on reading because you are at the right place.
All the things that need to be done to increase the size of bell peppers are related to the usual care of a bell pepper plant. You might be missing out on some important factors that are resulting in small-sized bell peppers.
From this article, you’ll get to know more about peppers: how to grow them perfectly and the answer to your question why are my bell peppers so small.
Bell peppers are a warm-season crop that produces different color fruits. Red, yellow, and green peppers are commonly used all over the world due to their low-calorie level and high nutritional value. They are available for use as fresh, frozen, or canned.
The best way to grow bell peppers in your home is by starting indoors, followed by hardening off the plant and then shifting the plant outdoors. Water, mulch, sunlight, and well-fertilized soil are all they need to produce juicy and colorful bell peppers.
Why Are My Bell Peppers So Small?
You might be only one step away from increasing the size of your bell peppers. It is not very difficult to identify which factor is stopping you from growing full-size bell peppers. All the factors that might be the reason for your problem are discussed below in detail:
1. Lack Of Sunlight
Bell peppers are a warm-season plant. They need a lot of direct sunlight to grow. In the case of planting indoors, try using a grow light for better and improved results. Young pepper plants require about 14 to 16 hours of light per day.
Leggy plants, thin stems, and slowed or stunted growth rate are the symptoms that need to be checked in case of lack of light. If such symptoms are present in your plant, there are high chances that the small size results from poor lighting.
If a grow light is already being used, try using a stronger one. If peppers are already being produced in the presence of enough light, then some other factor might be affecting your plant.
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2. Irregular Fertilization
The pepper seeds requires nutrients when they began to sprout. In the beginning, they don’t use many nutrients but when they start to grow, they start absorbing them from the soil.
The type of fertilizer your plant needs depends upon the kind of bell peppers, the stage of growth, and the soil in which it is initially planted.
For younger bell pepper plants, it is suggested to use nitrogen-rich fertilizers. It is not required if the plants are already planted in nutrient-rich potting soil.
For plants that are already grown and are now close to producing flowers and fruits, switching to phosphorus-rich fertilizers would be a better option.
If your plant shows symptoms such as yellowing of leaves, wilting or falling of leaves, or flower dropping, then start using a suitable fertilizer.
3. Excessive Watering
Even though you love your pepper plants, don’t start overwatering them. It is the most unforgivable form of showing love to your pepper plants.
Although under watering or no watering at all could be dangerous for your plant, overwatering imposes a life-threatening situation.
Stunted pepper growth is the most common problem in bell peppers which can be caused by watering a plant more than it requires. Symptoms that show you are overwatering the bell pepper plants include curling of leaves, dropping of leaves, root rot, falling of flowers, and poor fruit development.
4. Transplant Shock
Transplanting is an important step in growing plants from their seeds. It is normal for plants to have slow growth for some days after being transplanted. But if this continues after some days, the plant might be suffering from transplant shock.
There is not much you can do if your plant is suffering from transplant shock. You just have to wait for the plant to adjust to the new surroundings. Also, avoid fertilizing the plant for a week after it is transplanted.
5. Unnecessary Compression Of Soil
Well-aerated soil is liked by the roots of a pepper plant. A porous medium is preferred for good growth. So if the potting mix of the plant is packed too tightly, there is an extra amount of pressure on the roots which makes them unable to expand or absorb water.
Symptoms of compressed soil include root rot, the death of plant leaves, poor drainage, and oversaturated plant soil.
The use of a garden fork is the best way to loosen up your soil. Also, the use of compost can encourage drainage in plants.
6. Growth Of Weeds
The growing of weeds in between plants is normal. These weeds need to be pulled out regularly as they can reduce the growth of the plant. Weeds also come with uninvited pests and diseases which can easily travel to your plants.
Pull weeds regularly to avoid nutrients from being stolen. Also, lay a layer of mulch if possible so the growth of weeds is prevented.
If your bell pepper plants started producing small-sized fruit, don’t worry. Get all the possible information if you are new to gardening to resolve this issue. Listen to the plant carefully about what it is trying to tell you and act accordingly.
If you still did not get the answer to the question of why are my bell peppers so small, then feel free to contact us.