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Old September 6, 2019   #1
GrowingCoastal
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Default Pepper fruit rotting

Asking for a friend who grows lots of peppers in pots and usually has no problems. This year she is having a repeat issue with her bell types which are rotting before ripening. We have looked at images online and they only show BER problems. She says hers do not look like that. The fruits start turning brown on a spot on the surface (side) (not sunscald) and then later are found to be full of water and mushy, rotten.

Friend wonders if perhaps she is watering too much? Nothing came up in a search for that.
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Old September 6, 2019   #2
brownrexx
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Google pepper maggots and see if that may be the problem. It's a small fly that lays its eggs on peppers.
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Old September 7, 2019   #3
AlittleSalt
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I had never heard of peppers having water in them (Besides most peppers are made up of 50% or more water - especially bell peppers).

A few questions you might ask your friend about the outside of the peppers:

Do the peppers have a slimy feel to them?
Are there any visual insect puncture marks?
Are the peppers wrinkly?

Besides the peppers being watery/mushy/rotten inside, are the seeds discolored?

Your answers may help me or others figure out what is going on.
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Old September 7, 2019   #4
GrowingCoastal
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Thanks Salt. I'll have to ask about the seeds.
Friend said that a large pepper turns into a bag of water/mush then rots. Slime was not mentioned but they do mold after being affected. There is an area of brown, only on the skin, before it goes bad. Sure sounds like BER but she says not. Her hot peppers are all fine, no issues. It is just the bells. No insects visible. I do think that overwatering is a possiblity but don't know if it causes this kind of result. The greenhouse is also very crowded.

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Old September 7, 2019   #5
PNW_D
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perhaps Sunscald or Anthracnose .....

https://www.canr.msu.edu/news/mushy_...se_or_disorder
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Old September 7, 2019   #6
GrowingCoastal
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Thanks D. We looked at those on google and she says not like that.
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Old September 8, 2019   #7
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I've had that happen to me; Sometimes you don't notice it, and then the bag of mush falls off the stem. It usually just happens here and there and not on all of them. I never noticed the color but it is gross and stinks too.

I always thought a bug punctured it near the top.

ETA - I've had it happen on tomatoes too although more infrequently and I don't think it ever happened on a hybrid.
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Old September 8, 2019   #8
GrowingCoastal
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Thanks Barb. I had one mushy pepper that had started with a hole in it too. Had to pick up that pot as peppers were hanging out over the sides, tempting any passing rat and noticed then, a bag of mush on a stem. Friend says she has never had that happen before in the many years she has grown pepppers.
I have one pepper I have been watching that has been sunscalded and it is ripening normally around the scald.
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Old September 8, 2019   #9
Worth1
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Bought some perfectly good peppers blemish free from the store that rotted from the inside real fast.
The ones that didn't had brown areas inside the meat when I cut them in half.
That was this year and they were poblano.
Normally I can set them out and let them dry on the counter.
That brown spot was where the rot started and not from any kind of outside damage.
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Old September 14, 2019   #10
b54red
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I see that once in a while and it really is yucky when you reach out and grab one that is rotting like that. It seems to me it is similar or the same as what sometimes happens with tomatoes that is called sour rot.

Brown spots could be stink bug stings or leaf footed bug stings. That is a major problem at times here. I had to spray all my peppers a week ago because of stink bug and leaf footed bugs starting to multiply and mess up too many of the fruits. I have never associated those stings with the water filled stinking bell peppers but maybe that is how the bacteria gets started in some fruits.

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Old September 14, 2019   #11
GrowingCoastal
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Thank-you for the replies. After reading and considering the conditions, friend and I think that it is too tight in the greenhouse, humidity and over watering that are doing it. I found a couple of those water bags among mine this week on a Red Marconi that has had soil too wet. It has cooled off and is rainy now.
I keep the hots drier and thought that to have nice big juicy peppers they need more water. I guess not!
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