Life expectancy of pepper plants?

shoontokAugust 25, 2010

Hello all ya hot pepper freaks.

Being that this is my first year growing my own peppers and have about 8 to 10 varieties growing in the yard... i lost track and dont feel have the mental energy to count all of em right now, i was wondering if all pepper plants will survive another season if I treat them accordingly and overwinter them properly inside to plant them again next season.

Im definetly not gonna save the large mutlitude of plants overwinter. maybe just 4 plants i will save being that i will use one windowsill withe best sun and also have a sunlight type flourescent bulbs over head that window.

So far im thinking about saving one carribean red and my only cayenne plant. And possibly 2 more plants of any of the following..... Hungarian Wax, Habanero, Serrano, Hot Cherry pepper, Jalapeno, maybe even one of the Bell varietes i have.

Guess my question is that how many seasons can ya get out of one plant or is really dependent on variety?

Any info on this topic much appreciated.


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greenman28 NorCal 7b/8a

All chiles are perennial, so there's no reason that they can't live many years.
I've heard of peppers regularly growing for five, eight, or even twelve years.

Three years ago, someone posted a link to growing Hot Peppers as Bonsai.
As soon as I learned that chiles could be grown for more than a year, I decided
to see exactly how long I could keep a plant alive. And that's what started my
adventures in hot peppers - not heat, not color, not flavor....just longevity.

My first year, I bought six Hungarian Wax Peppers.
I selected one for over-wintering, and twice now I've been successful. I think that
the harvest is more bountiful and of higher quality on older plants.


    Bookmark   August 25, 2010 at 10:19PM
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Just from reading here, it seems like some folks get about 4-5 years and then they start over. Not sure exactly why, but, it seems that way.

When you get ready to bring them in, be sure to trim back the top and roots and clean the plant/roots as much as possible, and use fresh potting mix. You will (almost guaranteed) have insect problems at some point. By cleaning them up really well (I used a hose to spray the roots as clean as possible), you'll stave that off as much as you can. But, be prepared to fight the invaders at some point in the Winter. :-)

    Bookmark   August 26, 2010 at 10:26AM
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Hi, I had a seven year old Red Savina that I shouldn't have left with my mom to care and she promptly killed. I currently have a 5 year old and also some younger Bhut Jolokia, they are basically trees. I hope to keep the five year old for many more years. I don't do anything special when I bring them in for the winter, but as mentioned Ladybugs are my best friend.

Hope this helps,


    Bookmark   August 26, 2010 at 10:53AM
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Here's the site about bonsai chili.

Here is a link that might be useful: Useful hopefully

    Bookmark   September 4, 2010 at 5:18AM
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jojosplants(9/ Tucson, Az.)

Most of what i've read here says to bring them in. I'm in a "mild winter" climate. Can I just cover them and protect from frost? Do they go dormant?

I'm just learning that they can live for more than one year. ;) I only have one plant at the moment, but are planning on getting more ..
All your fault Josh. ;) (Hello Josh) :)


    Bookmark   September 4, 2010 at 9:55AM
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greenman28 NorCal 7b/8a

Yep, that's the bonsai (bonchi) guide that's been posted many times.
That's what gave me the inspiration.

Hey, JoJo! Peppers go "dormant" (well, radically slow their growth) below about 50°F.
It's the root-zone, rather than the foliage, with which one should be primarily concerned.

Some plants will scrape by at these low temps....but they'll look the worse for wear.


    Bookmark   September 4, 2010 at 12:59PM
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jojosplants(9/ Tucson, Az.)

Josh, Thank you! :)
So do they go in a sunny window when brought in?
I keep my house very warm in the winter. Will they keep growing? and will it hurt them to keep growing? If so, what's the best way/place to winter them?

tsheets~ you suggest triming and repoting. Do you put it in a small container?
Mine is in a large one at the moment outside. Too large to bring in really.


    Bookmark   September 5, 2010 at 2:06PM
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Hi Dastil here, I have been growing Datil Pepper Plants for 30+ years, I am native to St.Augustine, Fl, But now live in N.E. Tn. I have kept Datil Plants for up to 7+ years. I have winterized the Ghost and Scorpion in my basement for 4+ months, They are 10+' tall this year, to large to winterize again, I feed my chili plants rabbit manure when outside, 2 plants gave me several hundred pods, the Scorpion grew faster than the Ghost, The Datil is one of the most tasteful peppers you will ever find, plus they are right below the habaneros with their heat

    Bookmark   September 6, 2010 at 9:44AM
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greenman28 NorCal 7b/8a

Yep, I just set them in a sunny window-sill.

If you keep the root-zone warm, and provide sufficient light, a pepper will grow year-round.


    Bookmark   September 6, 2010 at 11:55AM
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