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Will sweet peppers ripen after picking?

Posted by wild_forager 6b (My Page) on
Fri, May 30, 08 at 9:48

I am growing a variety of sweet peppers and I've read that I should harvest some of the first peppers to appear before they ripen to increase overall plant yield. My question is whether or not those green peppers will continue to ripen once picked?


Follow-Up Postings:

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RE: Will sweet peppers ripen after picking?

No, once picked, unlike tomatoes, peppers will not ripen any further. For ripe colors leave the best on the vine but pick some of the less-perfect ones while green for production to continue.

Dave


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RE: Will sweet peppers ripen after picking?

A couple years ago I had to pick lots of small and medium hard green sweet banana peppers before freeze up. I put them in a box in the window. Over the next couple months they did turn orange and red, and got sweet.


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RE: Will sweet peppers ripen after picking?

Pepper plants like many other vegetables (cukes, zucc, eggplant) will stop/slow down producing if the fruit is left on the vine to mature (ripen).

You should use the early peppers as green peppers, and when you get tired of them let the rest start to ripen. If you don't pick the early ones those will be all you get.


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RE: Will sweet peppers ripen after picking?

I have seen banana peppers turn red by just sitting out too. Perhaps this is only for banana peppers?

So lets say I don't pick the early peppers green, about how many red peppers might I end up with ultimately?


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RE: Will sweet peppers ripen after picking?

Yes, some of the small peppers will "turn" on the kitchen counter but it is only because they had already started to change while still on the vine - the so-called "blush" had begun. Many times they just rot first but you can speed them up a bit by putting them in a brown paper sack with an apple in it.

Ripening all depends on the point in time when the plant grows the membrane between the stem of the fruit and the fruit itself. That membrane seals the pepper off from the rest of the plant - the blush point. Bananas, pimentos, chilis, habs, etc. are sealed off early. But most all bells (aka mangoes), giant bananas, anchos, etc. don't do that until after the fruit has changed color. There are a few improved hybrid bells bred for early color change that are exceptions.

So lets say I don't pick the early peppers green, about how many red peppers might I end up with ultimately?

That all depends on your garden situation, weather, soil, fertilizer, watering, sun exposure, etc. so you can't just say you'll get 6 or 4 or 9. ;) But a good guess would be that you'd get about 1/2 the number of peppers that you would if you grew the same plant for greens. Again, the reason why they are so much more expensive in the store.

If you have more than one plant, why not experiment with them for comparison in production.

Dave


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