Anyone who has ever tried to grow hot peppers knows it is not an easy task, which is why I am breaking down exactly how to grow ghost pepper seeds in 6 steps! The steps are simple and easy to follow, even for beginner gardeners. If you are a beginner gardener, don’t expect ghost pepper seeds to emerge quickly!
Hot peppers are notoriously hard to grow because they require a lot o direct sunlight, heat, and humidity. It is best to grow ghost peppers outside and in hardiness zones above 8 where temperatures reach 90 degrees Fahrenheit with ease. Keep on reading to learn how to grow ghost pepper seeds.
What Are Ghost Peppers?
So, what are ghost peppers? For our lovely readers who dislike spice, it is normal to be unfamiliar with this delicious pepper. Ghost peppers pack a lot of heat and is one of the hottest peppers in the world. Actually, ghost peppers have heat levels between 855,000 Scoville heat units to 1,041,427 SHU.
Ghost peppers are a vibrant red and are small. These peppers rarely grow larger than three inches long and yet still are one of the hottest peppers in the world! While many people attribute hot peppers like ghost peppers to Mexico, ghost peppers actually originate in India.
Ghost peppers are actually about 400 times hotter than jalapenos! If eating a jalapeno slice makes you cough and cry, maybe ghost peppers are not right for you. They are super fun to grow as ghost pepper flowers have beautiful white flowers that bloom quickly.
Where Do Ghost Peppers Grow Best?
Ghost peppers are originally from India and are also known as Bhut Jolokia. These very hot chili peppers are a fan favorite amongst spice lovers and grow best in hot and humid locations that can offer direct sunlight. Tropical states like Florida, Texas, and Hawaii has the right temperature and humidity for growing ghost pepper seeds.
When looking at how to grow ghost pepper seeds, you also need to consider space. These pepper plants can grow like bushes if you purchase seeds that are not a small or container-friendly variety. If you choose to grow ghost peppers in a container, ensure that the soil is well-draining and there are drainage holes at the bottom of the pot.
How To Grow Ghost Pepper Seeds In 6 Quick And Easy Steps
Listed below are 6 steps on how to grow ghost pepper seeds. You can always buy a ghost pepper plant, but it is not as satisfying! There is just something so amazing about picking a harvest, no matter how small or large the harvest is.
Step 1: Germinate the Seeds in Water
During the beginning of how to grow ghost pepper seeds, you will start by germinating the seeds. You can immediately place the seed into moist soil, but germinating the seeds with water can help weed out seeds that are old and dormant.
Grab a paper towel and wet it well. Make sure the paper towel is soaked. Fold the paper towel in half and in the center place 5-10 ghost pepper seeds. Fold again and store in a ziplock bag. For the best results, tape the bag to your window so the seeds get direct sunlight. Do not poke holes into the bag as this will release humidity.
Step 2: Care for Seedlings in Greenhouse
Once the seeds have small roots, plant the seed into a pot of nutrient-rich soil in a pot that has great drainage at the bottom. It is best to grow and care for ghost pepper seedlings in a greenhouse environment. You can buy a small window side greenhouse that attaches to your window.
If you have more space, there are affordable walk-in greenhouses that can increase humidity and temperatures. Ghost peppers like heat between 80 and 90 degrees Fahrenheit.
Step 3: Change Container or Transplant Pepper Plant Outside
During the third step on how to grow ghost pepper seeds, you will need to transplant your pepper plant once it reaches a minimum of six inches tall. As long as your ghost pepper plant has its true leaves, it is ready for a new container or for direct planting in-ground and outside.
Step 4: Water and Fertilize
The fourth step in how to grow ghost pepper seeds is the most important step. If you do not water your pepper plant well, it will dry out and die. However, ghost peppers require high levels of heat and sunlight so that the heat levels of the pepper increase.
This plant is also sensitive to over-fertilizing. Unless the plant does not have enough nitrogen, potassium, or phosphate evident by a test, you do not need to add fertilizer.
Step 5: Pollinate Flowers
It is so exciting when flowers start to pop up from your ghost pepper plant! Usually, if the plant is outside, the wind helps pollinate the flowers. However, if you are growing ghost peppers inside, it does not hurt to help pollinate flowers. Take a small paintbrush and swirl the pollen inside the flowers.
Step 6: Harvest Peppers
Last, but not least, when learning how to grow ghost pepper seeds, you should also learn how to pick ghost peppers and harvest them carefully. These hot and red peppers secrete oils that can burn your skin. Always wear gloves when harvesting ghost peppers and keep your hands away from your face until you can wash your hands.
What do you think about our guide on how to grow ghost pepper seeds? In just six steps and about 150 days, you can have your first homemade harvest of ghost peppers! If you are not a fan of the heat, you can always give away the peppers to spice loving friends and family. Let us know your questions and thoughts in the comments below!
Ghost peppers are difficult to grow, though. I recommend growing at least 3-4 ghost peppers from seeds to increase your chances of harvest. These temperamental plants have specific needs and are known to die or slowdown in growth without the right heat, humidity, or soil.
How long does it take for ghost pepper seeds to sprout?
It can take between 2 to 3 weeks for ghost pepper seeds to sprout, but the average is 35 days. Be patient!
Are ghost peppers easy to grow?
Ghost peppers are a lot harder to grow compared to other hot and sweet peppers. These peppers also take longer to sprout and require more care, fertilization, and sunlight/humidity.
Do ghost peppers need full sun?
Ghost peppers require full and direct sunlight for up to 6 hours each day.
Is a ghost pepper a fruit or vegetable?
Although some people refer to peppers as a vegetable in salads, they are actually a fruit since the seeds are inside and they grow from a flower.