Bell Pepper

{ Capsicum Annum }


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About Petra

Though Petra shares a name with her spicy cousin, Anthony, they are very different in nature. This sweet and colourful gal is loved by just about everyone, and can really liven up a dinner party - from Romesco sauce to paprikas to brightening up a garden salad, Petra is somebody you want to have around. She was originally brought to Europe when Columbus mixed her up with chilli peppers - that must have caused quite a bit of confusion when he first took a bite and got sugar rather than spice.

Petra can grow nicely on a kitchen windowsill or garden, so she'll always be on hand when you need her - no more last-minute dashes to Sainsbos. Plus, she's as rich in Vitamin C as an orange.

Quick Facts

Botanical name: Capsicum annum

Nicknames: Red pepper; Yellow pepper

Plant type: Evergreen perennial nightshade / Outdoor

Toxic?: Non-toxic

Current height: 30-40cm

Nursery pot: 14cm

Pro level: Medium

How to care for Petra (Red pepper; Yellow pepper)

The Basics:

Being South American, Petra likes her sun. If you keep her outside, she'll do best in temps above 13degC. So once the weather gets too cold, bring her inside and keep her in the windowsill, mini greenhouse or conservatory where she'll get plenty of sun.

Keep her soil well-drained, and fertilise her after you've picked her first crop of peppers.

You can begin harvesting and eating her peppers when they're about four inches long and their colour turns red or yellow.

Going the extra mile:

Pluck off some of the earlier flowers to encourage a fuller harvest later on in the growing season - down worry, you won't hurt her!

If you're planting her in your garden, try placing her 18 to 24 inches apart from other pepper plants for maximum growth and yield.

She gets along well with tomatoes in the garden bed as well as on your plate, so place them next to each other and they'll encourage each other to grow.