If you are growing pepper plants from seeds, then it’s crucial to transplant them early so that the little seedlings have enough space and nutrients to grow and thrive. More room for roots leads to bigger leaves for photosynthesis, which ultimately leads to larger fruits for harvest!
Pepper plants should be transplanted once their seedlings produce a third set of true leaves, which is around 3 or 4 weeks after sprouting.
The first set of leaves that you see are called seed leaves, and true leaves come right after. Once these fall off, wait for the third set of true leaves before transplanting.
In this article, we are going to walk you through the best practices for moving your pepper plants to their new home. Let’s get started!
How To Do It Properly
Before you start, get some clean 3 1⁄2 inch plastic pots that have drainage holes in the bottom. You should use high-quality growing compost that doesn’t have ‘damping off’ organisms – these are soil-borne fungi that cause stem rotting.
In another larger container, pre-moisten the soil (you will probably need to use this larger container later on). I would suggest you use filtered water slowly and mix it until the soil sticks together. Add more dry soil if the soil is too soggy.
Then, fill ¾ of the pots with this soil and press it down to make it firm. Use your finger to poke a hole in the center for your seedling. Untangle the roots of the pepper seedlings and place them in the holes.
Carefully cover the edges with more soil, making sure not to bury the stems beneath. Press the soil around the plant and give them some water.
You might also be interested in: Why The Leaves On Your Pepper Plants Are Turning Yellow And How To Fix It
Why You Should Transplant Pepper Plants
If your little peppers don’t have enough space to spread their roots, then they will eventually stop growing. This is because the roots have nowhere to go and they’ve used up most of the nutrients available in the soil, thus preventing your peppers from reaching their full potential.
Pepper plants that are not transplanted in time become rootbound, which increases the risk of transplant shock. If you don’t transplant them, the roots will continue to grow and would only end up suffocating the delicate seedling.
Stunted leaf growth is often a result of stunted root growth. Tall and leggy plants without many leaves are signs that they might be needing a larger home. Large leaves are necessary for photosynthesis, a biological process that is crucial for proper growth and development.
So, don’t forget to transplant your peppers and continue on with proper plant care. Pruning is also a crucial step that will get you more peppers, so you should check out: A Beginner-Friendly Guide To Pruning Pepper Plants