Do you have to dry sweet pepper seeds before planting them?
That's a good question. I'm assuming yes. Many seeds have a mechanism in them to not sprout until after being dry. I would assume that is because the inside of the fruit would be moist and humid, conditions conducive to germination, but a seed sprouting then would not be a good idea. So the seed knows that once it is dry, it must be out of the fruit and somewhere suitable to grow.
Also, an FYI for anyone reading this, peppers must be fully ripe to harvest seed. Meaning if you take seeds from a green pepper, they are not mature, and will be no good.
Yes, peppers must be very ripe and almost rotten before taking out the seeds. And yes they must be dried. To do this, I place the seeds on paper towels on a cookie sheet and let it sit in a sunny window sill for a few days. Some people suggest putting them in the oven at low temps for a bit but I don't like the sound of that.
A good test to know if the seeds will sprout is to place a few in a wet paper towel in a sunny window sill and see if they sprout. If they do then you are all set for next season. Remember to store them in a dry, cool, dark place so they aren't tempted to sprout.
Here is a link that might be useful: Home Gardening
I would not dry pepper or any seeds in the sun or the oven. Heat reduces fertility. Dry in the shade or inside at room temps. It might take longer but you're dealing with seeds- they're ALIVE.
You don't have to dry pepper seeds before planting.
My brother sometimes places an entire ripe pepper in the ground and tons of seedlings sprout from it.
You do want to make sure the pepper is fully ripe, not a green pepper when you take out the seeds.
A pepper requires a fair amount of heat (warmth) before germination. A trick I use to germinate pepper seeds is :
I take the seeds I want to germinate and put them in a damp paper towel, I then take this paper towel and place it in a zip lock baggie. I take the zip lock baggie and put it on top of the oven while baking something for about 1 1/2 to 2 hours.
The plastic doesnt melt on top of the stove and it provides the heat needed to start the germination. Most of the peppers that I've germinated this way usually germinate in about 7-10 days. This is even with the superhots (peppers that are said to take 90 days to germinate)
This method is great if you are baking chicken.
Not sure what that last sentence is about but I don't know anyone who bakes chicken for 7-10 days?? The ziplok over the pilot works great though. Instead of using a paper towel, I use toilet paper. It tears much easier when roots grow through it.