Growing Habanero Peppers in the Ground
Once there is no worry of frost, you can plant your habanero pepper plants to your garden or chosen spot. The best time is 2-3 weeks after the last frost when the soil temperature is 60 degrees. If you are planting from a store-bought seedling try to plant them in the ground within 2 days of purchasing. Choose a location with full sunlight for at least six hours per day, as habaneros LOVE the sun. Dig your hole twice the width of your pot and as deep as you can so that the soil level will be as close to the leaves as possible. Mix in some mushroom compost or other organic compost to make the soil fertile and moist. Add sand and ash to balance out what the habanero needs to grow free of disease and to help it spread its roots.
Space the habanero pepper plants 14 - 16 inches apart with about 2 -3 feet between rows. The plants will eventually grow to nearly 3 feet high under proper conditions. Use cages as needed when plants are at a height that they would lean. The cage will help support the plant when it gets heave from the growing habanero peppers.
How much water? Chili peppers love water as much as they love sun. But habaneros, specifically, are extreme heat lovers so only water when the soil has become dry. Do not overwater your habanero pepper plants. Include a good plant food product for fertilizing. There are many reasons a plant may not grow optimally such as soil conditions, not enough sun or excessive heat. Fertilizer can be used in conjunction with proper watering to optimize the growth rate. A good rule of thumb for watering is 1" per week.
Keep your garden well weeded. You don't want nasty weeds stealing the water from your growing habanero peppers.
You will want to mulch your habanero pepper plants 3 weeks after putting them into the ground. Simply place some fresh compost around the base of the plant mounding it up toward the stem. These fresh nutrients are a great natural fertilizer for the plant.
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