How To Grow And Harvest Chili Peppers For Great Yields

Chilli is one of the most valuable crops in India. The crop is grown largely for its fruits all over India. It is used in India as a principal ingredient of various curries, and chutneys. It is also used for vegetables, spices, condiments, sauces, and pickles. Dry Chillies are used for curry powder. The red color in chili is due to “Capsanthin”. Pungency in Chillies is due to the active constituent “Capsaicin”, an alkaloid is extracted from Chillies and is used to the medicine.

Chilli is one of the most valuable crops in India.

Climate requirement of Chilli Cultivation:

The chili is a plant of a tropical and subtropical region -It grows well in warm and humid climate and a temperature of 20-25°C. Low moisture in the soil during blossom development and fruit formation causes the bud, deblossom and fruit drops. Excessive rainfall is detrimental to the crops because it brings about defoliation and rotting of the plant. As a rained crop, it is grown in areas receiving annual precipitation of 25-30 inches.

Climate requirement of Chilli Cultivation:

Land Preparation for Growing Chillies:

Land Preparation for Growing Chillies:

Chilli can be grown in all type of soft but the sandy – loam, clay loam and loam soils are best suited for it, the soil must be well drained and well aerated. Acidic soils are not suitable for chili cultivation.
The land is prepared by giving 2-3 ploughings and clod crushing after each plowing. Compost or FYM @ 150-200 quintals should be spread and mixed well in the soil at least 15-20 days before sowing. At the last plowing, 0. H. C. @ 8-10 kg per acre of Aldrin or Heftaf @ 10-15 kg per acre should be applied to the soil to protect the crop from white ants and other soil pests.

Direct Sowing of Chilli:

Direct sowing is practiced under rainfed conditions. For direct sown crop, the seeds are drilled by the end of March or first week of April. Seed rate is 2.5-3.0 kg per acre. After 30-40 days of sowing, thinning and gap filling is done on a cloudy day.

Growth Phases of Pepper:

Growth Phases of Pepper:

The crop duration of chilli is about 150-180 days depending on variety, season and climate, fertility and water management. The growth of Chilli comprises of vegetative and reproductive phases. In general, the vegetative phase in Chilli extends to 75-85 days followed by 75-95 days of the reproductive phase. The vegetative phase is characterized by an increase in plant height with profuse branching. Heavy branching is preferred for better aeration and sunlight infiltration into the canopy over compact varieties. This also helps in preventing fruit rot. Flowering starts from 80-85 days of the crop or 40-45 days after transplanting. Chilli plant is an often cross-pollinated crop with 50% of the natural crossing. For fruit development and maturity about 40 days, time is required after anthesis and pollination.

Irrigation requirement for Chilli Plants:

Irrigation requirement for Chilli Plants:

Chilli cannot withstand heavy moisture. Hence irrigation should be given only when necessary. Frequent and heavy irrigation induces lanky vegetative growth and causes flower shedding. Plant growth, branching, and dry matter accumulation are adversely affected by excess irrigation. The number of irrigation and interval between irrigation depends on soil and climatic conditions. Stagnation of water should not be allowed in nursery beds and fields in order to avoid fungal infection.

Manures and Fertilizers requirement for Chilli Plants:

Manures and Fertilizers requirement for Chilli Plants:

In Chilli Farming,10 to 11 tonnes/hectare of farmyard manure (FYM) or compost is applied at the time of field preparation. In Chilli for rained crop 50 kg, N and 25 kg P should be applied 1/2 dose of N full dose of P applied at the time of transplanting. Remaining Yi dose of N applied 30 days after transplanting for .irrigated crop 100 kg N, 50kg P & 50 kg K should be applied per hectare. Fertilizers are applied in four equal doses. First applied at the time transplanting remaining doses are applied at 4th, 111 & 13′ week after transplanting.

Harvesting of Chillies:

Harvesting of Chillies
  • Chilli is highly perishable in nature. It requires more attention during harvest, storage, and transportation. Harvesting should be done at the right stage of maturity.
  • Chillies which are used for vegetable purposes are generally harvested while they are still green but full grown.
  • Chillies are harvested at the red color stage for caning purpose. Chillies used for drying are harvested at full ripe-stage which can be turned into Chilli powder.

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