How to Germinate Green Pepper Seeds

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Plant your green peppers from seed.
Plant your green peppers from seed. (Image: green peppers image by cherie from Fotolia.com)

Peppers are warm-season vegetables that thrive in many home vegetable gardens. The green bell pepper is the immature fruit of a red pepper. Starting green peppers from seed requires planning, as pepper seeds require very specific conditions to germinate successfully. Start green pepper seeds indoors six to eight weeks before the last spring frost in your area so the plants can be transplanted outdoors once the temperatures become warm enough in late spring or early summer.

Things You'll Need

  • Seed pots
  • Potting mix
  • Plastic bag
  • Heat mat

Fill individual seedling pots with a moist potting mix. Use a potting mix formulated for seed-starting or use a soil-less mix.

Sow one to two pepper seeds per pot. Plant the seeds at a ¼-inch depth then mist the soil surface with water to re-moisten it.

Place the seedling pots inside a plastic bag and seal the bag closed. This preserves the moisture in the potting media during germination.

Place the pots on top of a seed germination mat, available at garden centers and from seed suppliers. Set the mat at a temperature between 76 and 80 degrees F.

Remove the plastic bag once sprouts appear, which takes about seven to 10 days after sowing the seeds. Move the pepper seedlings to a warm, sunny window until you are ready to transplant them outside.

Tips & Warnings

  • Transplant pepper seedlings to the permanent garden bed once all danger of frost has passed and when nighttime temperatures are steadily above 50 degrees F.
  • There are many green pepper varieties on the market. Verify the germination time as written on the seed packet, as some varieties take longer to germinate. Adjust your planting time accordingly.
  • Pepper seedlings need light to thrive. If you don't have a suitably sunny windowsill, place the seedlings under grow lights during the daytime.

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