Pepper plants not growing well.

cobra1713June 19, 2012

Hello,

this is my first time planting peppers and some of them are not doing well. They are mostly hot and sweet banana papers. They are in containers (12" black nursery pots), half of them are growing well (very thick plants and bearing frut) the other half are not growing many leaves and loosing the leaves on the bottom half of the plant. I heard this could be due to over watering the plants but I water them all the same

and half are doing great.

I think the issue could be the soil. I used organic choice MG for some and left over bulk cheap soil on the rest. I am fertilizing with organic fish fertilizers and a 6-10-10 mix at different times of coarse.

Any ideas as to how to get them to grow stronger and fuller leaves? I ask because they are only producing about one fruit each, I think because there are only leaves on the top 1/4 of the plant.

Thanks

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DMForcier(8 DFW)

Don't guess on the watering. Let the plant tell you that it needs water by drooping leaves. (Observed when it's cool, not in the heat of the day.) It could be that one type of soil is retaining more water than the other type, causing you to over-water some even when you "water them all the same".

Get to the point where you *know* that they're getting the right amount of water. Then we can talk about other steps.

Also, moisture probes are really inexpensive. You might pick one up next time you're at the store.

Dennis

    Bookmark   June 19, 2012 at 4:55PM
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greenman28 NorCal 7b/8a

I agree.
You could also put a wooden kabob skewer into the pot to determine if the soil is drying.

I would use a higher Nitrogen fertilizer. No plant that I know of uses NPK in a 6-10-10 ratio.

In the garden, I'm using standard Fish Emulsion, 5-1-1 ratio.

Josh

    Bookmark   June 19, 2012 at 5:55PM
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cobra1713

I will take your suggestions and report back.
The fish fertilizers I am using is 5-1-1. I am mixing up a gallon worth to water 10 containers about every three weeks, does that seem enough?

    Bookmark   June 19, 2012 at 8:35PM
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habjolokia

First 1/2 your plants are doing well, I am guessing that those are in the MG soil and the ones doing poorly are in the other soil. MG usually has slow release feed for 3 mo and this generic may not have enough and the three week wait for the fish 5-1-1 is not cutting it. What was stated above about watering follow, not all pepper plants even same variety need water at the same time though it would be easier if they did. Pot size also plays a factor in how much you water.

I would also recommend using something like foliage pro 9-3-6 for those not in the MG soil and after 3 mo from when you first used the MG soil add this to them also.

    Bookmark   June 19, 2012 at 9:30PM
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cobra1713

https://picasaweb.google.com/113828927180649827900/PepperPlants#5756184410168994866

https://picasaweb.google.com/113828927180649827900/PepperPlants#576184556813996434

here are some pics just for reference, am going to pick up the moisture meter tonight after work

    Bookmark   June 20, 2012 at 2:32PM
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cobra1713

Sorry could not figure out how to post them from my phone but the links work

    Bookmark   June 20, 2012 at 2:54PM
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DMForcier(8 DFW)

They do look pretty wet. How much sun are they getting?

    Bookmark   June 20, 2012 at 9:05PM
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habjolokia

Agree with DMForcier they do look wet. Also noticed the ones that do not look like they are doing well have what looks to be mulch on the top layer of the pots. Did you add mulch or is that the way the soil came with wood in it? If you added or the soil came with wood chips that could be the problem.

    Bookmark   June 20, 2012 at 10:26PM
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cobra1713

That is the basic Kellogg brand potting soil that looks like mulch

    Bookmark   June 21, 2012 at 12:31AM
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habjolokia

Is it a possibility to nix those ones and repot to a better soil? If not they may be better off cleaned and placed into the ground. I think that the cause of the leaf drop and growth is that woody soil.

    Bookmark   June 21, 2012 at 7:51AM
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bjdurham(z7a GA)

The woodchips breaking down steal nitrogen from the plant. If you can't repot, adding nitrogen to the soil would probably help.

    Bookmark   June 25, 2012 at 1:14AM
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bjdurham(z7a GA)

The woodchips breaking down steal nitrogen from the plant. If you can't repot, adding nitrogen to the soil would probably help.

    Bookmark   June 25, 2012 at 1:15AM
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