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Old April 13, 2018   #1
cjp1953
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Default Pruning the tops leaves from tall pepper plants

I have seen this done on you tube but does anyone here do it?I have a few that have grown very tall.Has anyone pruned them back to get a fuller plant?Have you found by doing this you get more production.I talking about taken the top 2 sets of true leaves off.The plants have 4 or 5 sets of leaves.This is on my jalapeno and hot cayenne pepper plants.I have some that are still small and all are still on my heat mat.This is my first year using a mat,when do you take them off the heat?Temps are 75 to 80 degrees.All were started Feb.25th.
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Old April 13, 2018   #2
zipcode
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I think you mean cutting the growing tips off, not just the leaves, right? (done after the plant starts to fork or you risk not having any growing tips at all).
Just cutting leaves will have no effect on the growth pattern of the plant.
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Old April 13, 2018   #3
oakley
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http://www.tomatoville.com/showthread.php?t=46064
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Old April 13, 2018   #4
cjp1953
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Yes that's what I meant.ThanksI took them off the heat mat today.Had it plugged in the last 6 weeks.I'm going to look up more videos before I try this and maybe do 1 or 2 plants.Thanks again.
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Old April 13, 2018   #5
oakley
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I just snipped a half dozen of mine this morning...
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Old April 13, 2018   #6
rhines81
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Side-by-side, the plants will perform about the same during the first year (unless you top them too close to plant-out if you have a short growing season). I have 4 plants started Jan 1st (2 topped, 2 not) ... all have peppers on them, but the topped plants are thicker stemmed and bushier (and shorter). No difference otherwise. If you start your plants early and run out of vertical space for lighting, then topping them could be a viable solution.
I have seen studies done on topping vs not and there isn't much of a difference in the 1st year - topping for overwintering is a different story.

Last edited by rhines81; April 13, 2018 at 07:21 PM.
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Old April 13, 2018   #7
jillian
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I snipped mine a couple weeks ago as well, too tall to get under lights and I can't raise them any higher. They are outside everyday now and hopefully I will plant out Wednesday if the forecast doesn't change.

Zipcode, (or anyone else that snips) all the peppers are doing great and have put on lots of new growth uniformly except for a couple. These two have only put on new leaves at the tip, many of them and in a cluster. Is this what you meant by waiting until it forks? They look odd, I hope I didn't ruin them. Yikes!
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Old April 13, 2018   #8
pmcgrady
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I topped a lot of my peppers at the 4th row of true leaves, they are starting to fill out nicely.
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Old April 13, 2018   #9
pmcgrady
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I've been throwing the tops away, but I'm trying to clone/propigate some now. Tomatoes are easy, not sure about peppers...
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Old April 14, 2018   #10
cjp1953
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Thanks everyone,I just raised my lighting,I might try 2 plants.It's hard to cut these back as they look so healthy and I never tried this before.
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Old April 14, 2018   #11
b54red
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I did an experiment last year with my bells and topped half of them and left the other half alone. I planted them in two rows with every other one being a topped plant. I feel like it was a waste of time and effort because by topping I lost some of the earlier peppers and didn't see any difference in production. However if you want shorter and bushier plants then topping them does that.

Bill
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Old April 14, 2018   #12
oakley
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I would guess it is climate...temp and season length. Co-workers in the city....patio,
rooftop, and backyards grow massive pepper crops with just two or three plants. A cooler
climate up in the mountains I would get one or two peppers per plant, same variety.
Just too cold. I provided the plants and they would bring me bags of peppers to smoke
for them for sauce.

I'm sure variety matters also. My deck grown clipped/topped plants did great last year.
(closer to the city). Those I grew un-clipped did not produce until September. Clipped plants
I had peppers starting in mid June and produced all season. Two of the three survived over
winter and outside now having a few 80º days until tomorrow...

Side-by-side comparison I need to top them for a good harvest.
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Old April 14, 2018   #13
pmcgrady
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I lost a few pepper plants last year (wind), they were lanky and untopped. This year I want a bushier plant.
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Old April 14, 2018   #14
jillian
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It would be nice to not have to stake and tie up peppers for sure. I just took the tip out of mine so it probably won't affect their overall height so much. Here is a lady that really whacks hers, she talks alot so I fast forwarded through it. But I did find it interesting.
https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=syhPPONJDKY
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Old April 14, 2018   #15
zipcode
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jillian View Post
I snipped mine a couple weeks ago as well, too tall to get under lights and I can't raise them any higher. They are outside everyday now and hopefully I will plant out Wednesday if the forecast doesn't change.

Zipcode, (or anyone else that snips) all the peppers are doing great and have put on lots of new growth uniformly except for a couple. These two have only put on new leaves at the tip, many of them and in a cluster. Is this what you meant by waiting until it forks? They look odd, I hope I didn't ruin them. Yikes!
You could do it before it forks, as long as it has a few true leaves it can make new branches, but I normally would wait until it forks for the plant to have a decent amount of energy and have fast vegetative growth.
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