Bell pepper or sweet pepper is a kind of pepper that is different compared to other varieties because it is not spicy. Commonly peppers are spicy but bell peppers are not and they are sweet.
This plant grows from a seed and continues to grow in many stages of growth. Knowing the bell pepper growth stages will give an idea of how this plant grows and how to care for it.
Bell Pepper Growth Stages
Stage 1. Seed
A single bell pepper fruit can have a lot of seeds inside. The seeds of bell pepper are small, thin, flat, rounded in shape, and white to brown in color. Commonly bell peppers are propagated through seeds.
When seeds are high quality they have higher chances to germinate. It is good to buy bell pepper seeds at nurseries or garden centers to get high-quality seeds. Or if you save seeds from your garden you can use them. Those too young bell pepper seeds have a lower chance of germination.
Stage 2. Germination
It will take about 5 to 10 days to germinate bell pepper seeds. Usually, plants with small seeds just bell pepper germinate fast. Making the soil moist will make the seeds sprout quickly. Whether the seeds are planted in the container, or in a seedling tray they will still germinate fast.
The quality of seeds can also affect the rate of germination. Poor seeds will not germinate and sometimes only a few of them emerge. When seeds start to germinate, a tiny root will come out from the seed then the leaves will grow next. After a few days, more roots and leaves will grow.
Stage 3. Seedling
The germinated seeds will turn into bell pepper seedlings. When the seedlings have enough size they can be transplanted in the garden soil or in a container especially if they are grown first on a seedling tray. The seedlings have few leaves, a thin stem, and shorter roots.
During this stage, the plants still don’t produce flowers and fruits. They need more sunlight, water, and nutrients to increase the speed and size of bell pepper plants. At least 6 hours of sunlight will be good for the plant and at least 1-1.5 inches of water per week will make them hydrated. Adding fertilizer like compost will also be beneficial to them.
Stage 4. Vegetative Growth
After a few weeks of growing the bell peppers will grow much bigger and taller. In this phase, they will have more leaves, longer roots, a thicker stem, and a few branches. The plants are getting more mature.
They must receive their needs consistently to help them become prepared and ready. Once they are mature enough they are able to grow flowers and fruits.
Stage 5. Flowering
After around 40 to 50 days the flowers will grow on the plant. For other varieties, it can take earlier or longer for flowers to grow. In the early stage, the flowers are just small but they will eventually become bell pepper after a few weeks.
The bell pepper flowers are small, soft, and commonly white in color. There will be a lot of flowers growing on the plant. Some of the flowers will drop and other flowers will become bell peppers. It is normal for some plants to drop a few of their flowers.
Stage 6. Pollination
Bell peppers are self-pollinating and they can pollinate themselves. The plant has the male and female parts on a single flower. It can be pollinated with the help of the wind or with the help of pollinators like bees.
Even though the bell pepper plants are self-pollinating you can still do hand pollination to increase fruit yield. There are some ways to do hand pollinating like shaking the plants to move the pollen from another to the flower’s stigma, using a small, dry brush, or getting a flower from the plant and transferring the pollen on many flowers.
Stage 7. Fruiting
Once the flowers are pollinated, the bell peppers will appear on the plant. At first, the fruits are just small but after a few weeks, the bell peppers are developing and increasing in size.
It will take about 60 to 90 days to harvest bell peppers from seeds. Some varieties will take about 100+ days before they can be harvested. The unripe fruits will ripen in a few weeks.
Depending on the varieties of bell pepper, some will produce orange fruits, some varieties will grow yellow, red, green, or purple one.
The bell pepper fruits will have a lot of seeds inside. Those seeds can be used to grow new plants in the next growing season.
Bell Pepper Growth Stages: Conclusion
The bell pepper life cycle starts from a seed, it germinates, becomes a seedling, matures, grows flowers, and grows fruits. It will take the plant around 60 to 90 days to grow this plant from seed up to harvest but on some varieties, it can take shorter or longer to be harvested.