Chiming in on Mini Bell Peppers

comments (1) August 30th, 2011

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WesternGardener Jodi Torpey, contributor
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A container of Red Mini Bell peppers is a sweet addition to small space gardening.
Red Mini Bell peppers are almost too cute to eat.
A container of Red Mini Bell peppers is a sweet addition to small space gardening.Click To Enlarge

A container of Red Mini Bell peppers is a sweet addition to small space gardening.

Photo: Jodi Torpey

I guess you could say peppers are one of my gardening passions. Every year I plant as many kinds of hot peppers as the container garden can hold. However, sweet peppers are a different story.

I’ve just never had good luck growing full-size bell peppers. Sometimes I blamed my lack of success on a short growing season. Other times, I thought it was because the weather was too hot. Sometimes I gave up before the season was over.

But this year I decided on a different strategy. Instead of trying to grow large-size bell peppers, I chose a small variety called Red Mini Bell from Baker Creek Heirloom Seeds for my container garden.

Ah, sweet pepper success!

I grew several of these plants from seed and I’m delighted at the results. Each plant grew several feet tall in containers on my patio and took only 2 months to start producing peppers. Each one is just several inches round, but the flesh is tender and quite flavorful.

I had to resist picking the first green ones because I wanted to watch them ripen to a bright red. It’s fun to pick a few to slice for salads at lunch or to hollow out and fill with a creamy dip for a light snack. I'm sure they could also be chopped and frozen to use in recipes over the winter.

As much as I’m enjoying the peppers now, I have to admit I wasn’t sure I’d have any sweet peppers at all. I started the seeds indoors a little later than usual. Then the weather didn’t warm enough until mid-June to transplant them outside. Rollercoaster temperatures throughout the summer didn't create ideal growing conditions.

But this time I didn’t give up. I made sure the pepper pots got plenty of sun, water, and fertilizer. I don't think this small success will make me want to try growing large bell peppers in the future. I think it's just a reminder that bigger isn't always better. 

posted in: peppers, sweet peppers, mini bell peppers

Comments (1)

growembig66 writes: i had a plant that i purchased at wal-mart that was labeled fajita bell from bonnie plants, could they be the same as what you have? the marker shows fruit size to be 4"x3.5", but all of mine have been more like the size of a golf ball. they start out green and then red, i never waited to see if they would turn brown as some have hinted that they might, but we have had a cpl of freezes already and i didn't want to chance losing them because they have some really great flavor!! i harvested 3 large bell peppers too and a cpl of dozen of who knows what kind of peppers they are. lol i'll have pics up here a lil bit later tonight or tomorrow.
thanks for all your help, your articles are awesome!! cheers
Posted: 8:55 pm on November 19th
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