Growing Pepper Indoors
Harvesting peppers year round can be fun and challenging at times. There are two main ways to grow and harvest year round.
One is to have a heated glass greenhouse or hoop house with two layers or even three layers inflated.
Two is to grow them in you house in a window or dedicated space with high intensity lighting like (HID halides or high pressure sodium) or LED lighting.
You will likely have to supplement some light if you grow in windows or greenhouse or hoop house. Now if you are planning to have fresh peppers year round. You first need to have an idea of what you would like to have and how much. If you want to keep yourself in Bell type peppers that can be hard. Seeing how the bigger pod varieties have a hard time making lots of pods in the summer. So you need to think about varieties that don't have such large pods.
For sweet peppers we would recommend the Mini Bells or Sweet Cayennes or Hot Cayenne. You can keep harvesting very good yields from these type of varieties and almost all of the smaller pod type varieties.
In the near future, we will be making a list of the varieties we have had good luck with at the bottom of the page from superHot to sweet.
There is a quick list of Varieties we have had good yields from inside. We will start with sweet Varieties first.
Atlantic Mini Red
Atlantic Mini Orange
Sweet Cayenne and hot Cayennes
Most Ornamental Varieties can do well
Most Dwarf Varieties also do pritty good
We have had good yields indoor with Bishops Crown and AJi Fantasy White and With Lemon Drop. These Capsicum Baccatum do well indoors along with others Capsicum Baccatums. But Capsicum Baccatum are tall Varieties and need to be trimmed a lot and keep as short as possible.
Most Habaneros grow very good inside with pritty good yields. You have to learn to only let the plants grow what they can and in most cases you need to remove pods so not to over load the plant or you will end up with pods falling off or flowers dropping. This is good practise for all indoor plants you intend to keep harvesting from. It’s best to control plant size by growing in smaller containers this will limit the plants.
when growing indoors you need to deside if you are going to grow in soil or water the biggest difference is cost. Growing in water has it benifits and it down falls first is cost of nutrients and the grow medium and tables and or buckets. This is the most expensive way to grow indoors and there is a learning curve with growing this way.
if you grow in soil you will need to use slow release nutrients we use bone meal it is a must. And plants can get buy with just bone meal for two to three months. If you are ok with using fertilizer the best to use would be time release fertilizer. There are many on the market we would recommend osmocote you can get this in 3 month to 15 month. This is a greenhouse or nursery Secret most if not all use one or more forms of this fertilizer. We have used this in the past and it works excellently. You can find smaller container of osmocote at stores like Canadian tire Home Depot but most or these are 2-3 month formula.
Light and how much you plants need
In today's market its very hard to understand the power of lights. in the old days when all they was was HID lights. All you needed to know was watts pre square footage. But now we are looking at terms like PPFD or PAR and uMOL-m-2-s-1.
Here is what you need to know peppers and other flowering plants need 25-40 MOL-m-2-d-1 which is the amount of light needed to grow a plant in a day.
So the only light measurement that you need to use is uMOL-m2-s-1 this is the light that a light puts out every Second.
so what you do is take this uMol measurement that a light puts out. Let’s say that’s have a light with 400 uMol-m2-s-1 to get how much light this light can output in a day we take 400 times that by 60 for 60 seconds and than times that by 60 for 60 minutes than time that by 24 for 24 hours in a day
so 400 *60= 24,000 and
24,000*60=1,440,000 so now we have the amount of light that this light can put out in a hour. So now we divide
1,440,000/1,000,000 the 1,000,000 is the amount of light that makes one MOL-m2-h1. So 1,440,000/1,000,000=1.44 Mol
so how we can times 1.44 MOL-m2-h1 by 24 hours 1.44*24=34.56 so if we have this us light on for 24 hours it can give plants 34.56 Mols a day if on for 24 hours but plants need some night or darkness. so let’s say the light is on for 18 hours that would give plants under it 25.92MOL a day
so when looking for a led light you need to look at it’s umol output. And you also need to look at the lights radiation pattern is it 2 feet by 2 feet or 3 by 3 and so on but most are around 3 by 3. So one light that can cover a 3 by 3 with 400 umol or 200 umol in a 4 by 4 space.
For more on this see this link