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Plant Diseases/Chili care

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Question
Hello Melissa,

I just read an interesting Q-A on this website about chili plants.
Its the second year that im growing chilis. Last year I harvested some nice chilis, but unfortunately all my plant got weak and dropped their leaves somewhere in July.
My new chili plant are about 20cm high now and they are growing nicely.
I have 2 fertilizers at home now: 1 for geraniums (8-6-6) and pink little ball fertilizer for fruit and veg (16-9-20). Is one of these suitable for my (still healthy) chili plants?

Thank you for your answer.


Have a great day,


Martina

Answer
Dear Martina, Sorry for this late reply, but I had a short vacation this week.  For chili peppers, and with other peppers, the best fertilizer would be one that is in a 1-2-2 ratio.  For example, a fertilizer that is 5-10-10 would be best.  The first number is nitrogen which will make the plant grow, but not the fruit.  The second number - phosphorus is good for the fruit production.  The third number - potassium helps with good fruit development and general plant regulation.  Anyway, the general rule for fertilizing peppers (and tomatoes) is to apply fertilizer when the plant first blooms, and then the second application when the plant first sets fruit (peppers).  After that you can apply some every few weeks or so as long as the plant keeps making more peppers.  The other fertilizers you mention are too high in nitrogen for good peppers.  I hope this information helps, but be sure to write back if you have more questions.  Good luck, Melissa

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Melissa Johnston

Expertise

Plant diseases, landscaping, tropical plants, roses, herbs, plant care, grafting, horticulture, plant identification, anything about plants I can likely answer.

Experience

35 years experience in various plant businesses, 1984 Certified Texas Master Gardener.

Organizations
Master Gardener Association of Texas charter member

Publications
none as of yet, but I have a plant q&a book I am in process of submitting.

Education/Credentials
Magna cum laude graduate of Texas A&M, 1978

Awards and Honors
Plant growing awards, highest grade for Texas Master Gardener graduates.

Past/Present Clients
Past member of Allexperts.com and was very highly rated. Owned landscape company in the past, Almost Paradise, and was very successful despite little equipment, no help, and no advertising. Lived well for two years until 9/11.

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