Trimming blossoms from plants

AiliDeSpain(6a - Utah)April 27, 2014

Once again my peppers are flowering in their pots, it is still too early to plant them out. Yes I started them too early.
Last year I didn't trim the blossoms and they went on to do just fine when I planted them out after Mother's Day.
I am wondering if anyone that practices trimming early blossoms has noticed a significant benefit in doing so.

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digdirt2(6b-7a No.Cent. AR HZ8 Sun-35)

Frequent question so if you want to read all the previous discussions the search will pull them up.

The odds heavily favor blossom drop and aborted fruit if they even set fruit. They are young, stressed transplants anyway and should be focused on leaf growth and root development right now, not production. And that stress is only compounded when you transplant them to the garden.

So IMO there is nothing to gain by leaving them and a benefit to the plant if you remove them.


    Bookmark   April 27, 2014 at 3:39PM
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Mark(Oregon, Zone 8)

I agree with Dave. From experience i've seen significantly better production overall when peppers do not set fruit while their still small. I'd pick as many blossoms as you can and feed with fish emulsion or another nitrogen rich fertilizer.


    Bookmark   April 27, 2014 at 7:08PM
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I live in zone 5, and I only remove the very first middle bloom, that is on the first branching point. In our climate, you HAVE to have peppers flowering in pots and even producing fruit before you can plant them out, otherwise, you may not get enough peppers due to the short season. And the plants I transplant are what ever but small young plants - I grow them in half-gallon pots from the beginning, and they are about a foot and half tall and branching when I plant them out. The trick is to wait until their roots fill the whole pot, but before they start roll around it... This way they almost do not have transplanting shock as root ball is strong and do not fell apart, peppers just continue to grow in a new environment. I tried once to remove all blooms from several "test" plants. Only difference I found, first peppers from them were picked at least 3 weeks later.

    Bookmark   April 27, 2014 at 9:04PM
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AiliDeSpain(6a - Utah)

Hmm well I just took the blossoms off about three out of 16 pepper plants, I don't think I'll bother with the rest and just see how they do.
Galinas, what do you mean by branching?

    Bookmark   April 27, 2014 at 10:32PM
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seysonn(8a WA/HZ 1)

Blossom drop ? maybe, maybe not; I harvested 3 pods of about 1.5" from my Hungarian Hot Wax, before plant out. BUT if you are going to plant out with new flowers, the chances are that those flowers will be aborted. You don't have to pinch them off. The might even abort small pods if they cannot support it.

For you is an opportunity to find out. Take a few from same variety. Pinch off some and let the other ones to do whatever they want.

    Bookmark   April 28, 2014 at 2:35AM
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When peppers just start to grow they have a simple structure - one stem and opposite pairs of leaves. As they grow they first create two-three branches on the top of the plant. In the same place usually first flower formed. This one needs to be removed, to let the new branches to develop well. Later, each new branch create additional two-three branches and also new branches start in the leaf axils. This whole process I call branching)

    Bookmark   April 28, 2014 at 5:37AM
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Mark(Oregon, Zone 8)

When offering advice I try to avoid terms like "needs to be". Mostly because there are lots and lots of opinions out there, but they are just that, opinions.

For example, I have never taken the time to remove the center flower/fruit from any of my pepper plants. The biggest problem i've seen is that on very rare occasions, it's a little harder to pick this pepper because it's tight to the stem. Plant development has never, ever been an issue for me by leaving this fruit, and i've been growing peppers for market for 19 years now.

No offense to anyone, but this is just my experience.


    Bookmark   April 28, 2014 at 11:32AM
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seysonn(8a WA/HZ 1)

Yes Mark. One thing to recognize that what we say here is our "opinion" even when we skip saying it ( IMO, probably, I think, , I would do it this way, that way ..). The reader should sift thru the comments and decide what to do or what not to do. I, personally, give more weight to the comments of those who (in my judgement) are knowledgeable (like you) but I think that nothing should be automatic and taken on the face value. That is how I look at it.

    Bookmark   April 28, 2014 at 9:20PM
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Mark(Oregon, Zone 8)

I certainly agree that that's the way things should be taken. It's just i've seen many times when questionable advice is given and the OP runs out in the backyard and does something rash. One example is when a new gardener was given the advice to snap off the top of their onions to promote a larger bulb. They went out and did this to all their onions and damaged the entire crop before someone pointed out the error.

My suggestion was definitely not to rub anyone wrong, just to be careful to remember that there are many different ways to do things, besides those we think are right.


    Bookmark   April 29, 2014 at 12:44AM
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I do not agree with with you, Mark. No offense as well) What we post here - is opinion, that's correct. And everybody has it's own way to do things based on their experience and knowledge. But, when we describe "our way" to do it - every step is important, so IF you wanna go the way I go, then there are "needs to be". Because technique depends on your climate, living situation, and every step is important and tested. Unfortunately, many people give just one or two steps from a whole program they follow and other people are surprised, why it works for authors, and not for them. Usually it is just because important steps are missing in description. So I never tell people - do as I do. But I always give as much details as possible based on my experience for easier following and mark important steps as "needs to be". and I ONLY tell about things I did for many years and have satisfying and (what is more important) improving results.
Also, I have to apologize, if my language is not all that shiny and soft toned) I came from a cold climate with different language and summer there is just 2 and half month long and growing peppers there was ... hm.. challenging) (normally I would swear here )LOL)

    Bookmark   April 29, 2014 at 5:30AM
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