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Old April 2, 2015   #31
drew51
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I think i saw on a thread where someone mentioned removing the peppers near the first "V" split. And you know there are some there.
Yeah energy shifts towards production and not growth. But again I found they just produced more flowers. I may take them out anyway. Or as you suggested just removing some. I will at least remove those near the "V".
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Old April 20, 2015   #32
jmsieglaff
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Moved the peppers to the cold frame yesterday, taking advantage of a couple cloudy days. They are doing well and branching out of all crotches. I'm hoping not to need to pot them up again. Here they were before going outside.
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Old April 20, 2015   #33
tnkrer
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a question about topping .. Does this work well for sweet peppers as well? So by topping off, we are not allowing the main stem to grow, but then the side shoots take over?
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Old April 20, 2015   #34
Worth1
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tnkrer View Post
a question about topping .. Does this work well for sweet peppers as well? So by topping off, we are not allowing the main stem to grow, but then the side shoots take over?
There is no such thing as a main stem on a pepper plant other than the trunk.
They are more like a hardwood tree they just start making branches.

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Old April 21, 2015   #35
jmsieglaff
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tnkrer View Post
a question about topping .. Does this work well for sweet peppers as well? So by topping off, we are not allowing the main stem to grow, but then the side shoots take over?
I did it with a sweet bell last year and it worked great. I think what Worth's comments are true, but I still think it is worth (hehehe) trying. Here is why I'm trying it this year (based on that one plant last year).

So that bell could have just been super productive because it was started early or grown in a pot on the deck that it really liked or whatever. But that bell plant produced more peppers than probably 3 of my other plants combined. So this year I'm topping a lot of my peppers (bells, yummies, hots), but leaving a few others as controls.

My thoughts on topping are this. In northern climates with shorter seasons, starting plants earlier and getting more foliage points (and flowering points) I think gives you an advantage. If you pinch the main stem early you force the plant to begin to produce side growth at all main stem/leaf crotches. More photosynthesis, more flowers, more peppers?! You end up with a pepper shrub more than a pepper tree like Worth mentioned. For people with long growing seasons it may not matter because the plants will branch and grow out on their own. But I think an earlier jump and more vegetative matter for us with short seasons makes sense--at least in theory.

We'll see how this year goes, it may be that there isn't really much of a difference, but the one plant last year is at least making me try this year!
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Old April 21, 2015   #36
drew51
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Comparisons don't tell me much. I usually only grow two of each type of pepper. I have yet for any two plants to be anywhere similar. Some grow well, others do not. If I top the more vigorous plant it does well, if I don't top the more vigorous plant it does well. So I go the path of least work. I started mine too early. Next year I'll wait some. I still have at least 2 weeks before plant out. Here are some (untopped) plants. Setting fruit already! They got beat up a little yesterday by 40mph winds, that should thicken them up!


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Old June 3, 2015   #37
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I unintentionally ended up with topped peppers this year.

When I moved them out to the mini greenhouse, I put most of the peppers on the top shelf. What I didn't realize was that a couple of weeks later, they had grown so tall that they were up against the plastic and all the growing tips got fried. The lower leaves were still healthy so I cut off the dead tops and planted them. None of them are sweet peppers. A couple are struggling, especially Red Cayenne, but for the most part they're putting out a ton of side shoots all up and down the stems.

I had the same thing happen with two eggplant plants and they are doing the same.
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