Green & Red Bell Peppers ~ Homegrown by me! For 10 summers now, I have been trying to grow bell peppers in my garden. I want big beautiful bell peppers of many colors! I always plant them. Sometimes the plants do grow well, but the peppers have never really pleased me. I have tried several different seed varieties from many sources. I especially want to grow red and yellow/orange/gold bell peppers. They are sweeter than the typical green ones and they are so expensive in the supermarket. I never buy them in the market. Sometimes our local organic farmer has colorful bell peppers, and then I will buy one or two. This year I did buy a few purple bells from our farmer friends to make my favorite stuffed pepper dinner recipe.
Big Red Bell Pepper ~ a green Cal Wonder turned red in the sun
In years past, I have tried growing bell peppers from seeds and also resorted to buying pepper plants when my seeds wouldn't sprout correctly, or when I couldn't find the seeds I wanted. I have planted and grown green, light yellow, purple, gold and red bell pepper plants. I said, I grew the plants. However, usually the plants only produced a sparse few peppers, mostly green, mostly small and not very tasty.
The purple variety, as I recall, produced many peppers, but they were all the size of a ping pong ball at maturity, (maturity = turns color) which didn't work very well for my stuffed peppers recipe.
Gold & Green Bell Peppers!
This year, I started two varieties, a Green Cal Wonder, and a Golden Cal Wonder from seeds. The plants were healthy if a bit small at transplanting time. They flowered well and started to bear fruit. Little peppers formed on each plant. However, they kept getting shaded by the adjacent summer squash leaves that were taking over my entire raised bed garden. I kept moving and even pruning the big squash leaves away from my peppers, but the little pepper plants did not get enough direct sunlight to really produce well. That is until the end of summer when the squash plants started to die back and let the sunlight into the rest of the garden.
Then the recent cold nights hit and a few rainy and cold days. Peppers love heat, bells being no exception. So I went ahead and harvested all of the rest of the peppers, green, red and gold and brought them into the kitchen. Perhaps a bit prematurely, since it has been sunny outside now for a few days.
The peppers that were already starting to turn yellow or red have since turned color completely in the warmth of the house. They are beautiful, thick walled, crunchy, juicy and sweet. I have been enjoying them mostly raw in fresh green salads. Also some in stir fries. Only one or two were really large enough or the right shape (square & blocky) for my stuffed pepper recipe, so I doubt I will use them that way.
So I am celebrating my harvest of beautiful bell peppers. There are more peppers of more color variety that actually taste good, than I have ever grown before. So this really is a pepper celebration.
Farmer, gardener, baker, cook, massage therapist, cat & chicken Mom, partner & business owner. Sells earth friendly products for you and your home, including natural soap, candles, body balms, cat toys, cat beds & many other handmade crafts.
This Harvest Basket is a collection from mountain rural life, the everyday wonders of nature and the forest, my vegetable & herb gardens, fruit & nut trees, chickens, kitty cats & my loving partners. My endeavor to live a natural, healthy and peaceful life on my 3 acres in the beautiful Sierra Nevada foothills also includes home cooking, baking, canning & crafts. Join me on my journey of learning and growing each day. I will share my Mountain Harvest with you.