Capsicum annuum L.
Capsicum annuum belongs to the group of annual and biennial plants.
Capsicum annuum was described by Carl Linnaeus in 1753. The name is considered as validly published.
- green pepper
- red pepper
- sweet pepper
The plants reach heights of 20 to 80 centimetres. The plants reach a width of 0.6 to 1 metres.
Capsicum annuum is deciduous. The dark-green, simple leaves are alternate. They are ovate, entire and petiolate. The surface of the leaves is glabrous.
Flowers and Fruits
Capsicum annuum produces solitary white campanulate flowers from June to September. The plants are hermaphroditic.
From autumn to winter the plants produce green berries that are both edible and very ornamental.
Capsicum annuum is native to South America and Mexico.
The plants prefer a sunny situation on moist soil. The substrate should be sandy-loamy or gritty-loamy soil. They tolerate temperatures only above at least 1Â°C (USDA zone 10).
Tolerance of special soil conditions
- none: drought
Suited as container plant and as indoor plant.
Maintenance and Propagation
The plants usually need very little maintenance.
Pests and Diseases
Honeydew, galls and distorted leaves are a sign for an infestation with aphids. Use an insecticide or control biologically , e.g. with parasitic wasps or predators such as Aphidoletes aphidimyza.
Cankers indicate an infection with fireblight. Generously remove affected parts and destroy them.
Mealy excreta on leaves, flowers or fruits indicate in infestation with caterpillars. Crush eggs, handpick and destroy caterpillars. Also apply insecticide or use biological pest control.
A powdery white coat on the plants indicates an infection with powdery mildew. Remove affected plants and apply a fungicide. To prevent infection improve ventilation, keep the roots moist and do not water the plants from above.
White tufts or white covering on the lower surface of the leaves indicates an infection with downy mildew. Remove affected plants and apply a fungicide. To prevent infection improve ventilation, keep the roots moist and do not water the plants from above.
Fine webs on the plants indicate an infestation with red spider mites. These sap-sucking insects mainly appear under glass and can be controlled either with insecticide or biologically with parasitic mites.
Sudden wilting and pale green discolouration indicate a fungal infection (phytophthora). Remove infected plants. Avoid by improving drainage and over-fertilization.
White spots on flowers and leaves in combination with buds that do not open indicate an infestation with thrips. These insects can be controlled by improving ventilation and by watering regularly as well as by using an insecticide or biolocial pest control (predatory mites).
Honeydew and sooty mould indicate an infestation with whiteflies. The larvae look like those of mealy bugs, the adults suck sap on the undersides of the leaves. Apply insecticide, under glass control biologically.
- Walter Erhardt, Erich GÃ¶tz, Nils BÃ¶deker, Siegmund Seybold: Der groÃe Zander. Eugen Ulmer KG, Stuttgart 2008, ISBN 978-3-8001-5406-7. (Ger.)
- Christoper Brickell (Editor-in-chief): RHS A-Z Encyclopedia of Garden Plants. Third edition. Dorling Kindersley, London 2003, ISBN 0-7513-3738-2.