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Old July 23, 2017   #61
b54red
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A learned lesson for next year from you. Next year I will prune my bells. I got some sweet peppers, but not as many as I hoped. I pulled off the ripe ones, finally got some ripe, and now shaded plants are growing again.

What really made me sad as I didn't notice til too late, that the hornworms made major destruction of the pepper plants. They ate leaves and peppers like crazy. My fault as with the plants being in shade, I didn't have to water them very often and was too busy killing hornworms on the tomatoes and saving them.

I think next year, I might also do a set-up like RedBaron's. Instead of just shade on top, will cover the sides too. Darn pests will be back next year like always and this time maybe I'll be ready for them.

Maybe since the hornworms did some major pruning, I'll have some bigger plants. I can see new leaf growth and more blooms coming on, so hopefully I'll have plenty by the time frost comes.
Are you sure it was hornworms on your bells? There is a foliage worm that gets on almost anything and feeds first from the bottom of the leaves and it can leave bell peppers almost nude if not stopped quickly. The first thing you notice with these worms is a thinned spot on the leaves and usually lower on the plant at first. If you turn the leaf over and look close you can see hundreds of tiny and I do mean tiny worms but in a few days they will grow and eat like goats. They will eventually when they are larger feed on the fruit also. I have had them so far this year on my squash, beans, tomatoes, peppers and cucumbers. Bt if applied when they are small will usually slow them down and sometimes stop them but if they get bad I will use Sevin which will wipe them out in a half hour. They are voracious feeders and you have to keep an eye out for them because they grow so fast and spread like wildfire if you leave them to their business for more than a couple of days.

Bill
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Old August 30, 2017   #62
b54red
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For most of the summer my bell peppers under the shade cloth did slightly better and produced a few more peppers than the ones in full sun. That has now changed dramatically. I think it may be the massive invasion of whiteflies which seem to like it under the shade better and thus are spreading foliage diseases faster under the shade cloth. Up until two weeks ago my plants under shade looked noticeably better and now they look far worse. Both beds have gotten the same treatment all year long and so I must conclude it is the whiteflies which only got bad a few weeks ago and are really bad now.

I used the last of my Vegetable formula from Urban Farms to try and perk them up but it may not help at this stage. I will still get some good peppers off some of the plants but many have less than a quarter of their leaves still on them and the slightest touch sends them to the ground. A good high wind could leave some of them leafless.

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Old August 30, 2017   #63
dmforcier
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Pull the cloth off?

Well-established peps should still have quite bit of vigor, and may come back.
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Old September 1, 2017   #64
b54red
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Pull the cloth off?

Well-established peps should still have quite bit of vigor, and may come back.
I believe that every pepper in my garden is now well infected with Bacterial Leaf Spot and some are in the death throws from it. I have never had a pepper plant get better after getting infected. Sometimes if the weather is dry and cool they will hang on a long time but with all this rain we have been having it is really sad to see how fast they are going downhill.

I already removed the shade cloth in time for three days of steady rain. I went out this morning and they looked like death warmed over. I can't really complain too much since I have had a bumper crop of peppers this year and it had to come to an end one day and that day looks like it is fast approaching. Oh well it is time to get ready for fall gardening anyway.

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