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Peppers
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Peppers
Peppers
Peppers
Peppers
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Peppers
Capsicum annuum
Also known as: Chili pepper, Facing heaven pepper, Jalapeño, Anaheim pepper
The peppers is a plant that produces bright red pepper vegetables. This chili pepper is commonly used for cooking in places such as the Southern U.S. and Central America. Most are moderately spicy, though because there are so many variants, the spice level can vary dramatically. Cayenne powder is also a popular seasoning product made from peppers plants.
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Twice per week
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care guide

Care Guide for Peppers

Peppers need regular and frequent watering throughout their entire growth cycle. The best way to keep them well-watered is by using drip irrigation. If you're growing them in containers, water thoroughly when a top few inches of soil becomes dry. Make sure the soil does not become waterlogged by providing good drainage.
Fertilization
Fertilization
See Details
Start feeding your peppers upon planting. Apply well-rotted manure or garden compost in the spring and continue feeding your peppers with balanced, all-purpose fertilizer during the growing season. For any additional feeding, test your soil to check for nutrient deficiencies.
Trim the dead, diseased, overgrown branches in winter.
Sand, Loam, Clay, Acidic, Neutral, Alkaline
Potting Suggestions
Potting Suggestions
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Needs excellent drainage in pots.
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Questions About Peppers

Watering Watering Watering
Pruning Pruning Pruning
Temperature Temperature Temperature
Seasonal Care Seasonal Care Seasonal Care
How Often to Water Peppers?
Overall, Peppers requires a significant amount of water throughout the growing season. To meet that high water need, you'll need to water early and often throughout the spring and summer. During the earlier parts of the growing season, you should water your Peppers about once or twice per week. As the season progresses, you should increase your watering frequency. You may need to water it twice per day or more during summer, depending on the weather. After your Peppers have gone through their major seasonal growth phases, you can reduce the frequency of your watering to about once per week until the end of the growing season.
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How Much to Water Peppers?
Since Peppers are incredibly popular, with many professional and amateur gardeners growing them successfully, we have a pretty clear idea of how to care for these plants. That understanding includes specific knowledge about the precise volume of water an average Peppers should receive. Generally, Peppers will require about 1 - 1.5 inches of water per week. That volume should be dispersed evenly through your weekly watering. As the weather gets warmer, you may need to supply more water, but in most cases, two inches per week is a good baseline amount.
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What Is the Best Way to Water the Peppers?
Not only does the Peppers have certain preferences regarding how much water it receives, but it also cares deeply about how you provide that water. In fact, if you don't use the proper watering technique, you risk harming your tomatoes. The best way to water Peppers is to apply the water directly to the soil in a slow and gentle manner. You should not pour all of the water into the soil at once, and you should not do overhead watering for your Peppers. Although you should water slowly, you should also water deeply to ensure that all of the soil in which your Peppers grows is sufficiently moist.
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How to Know If You Are Watering Peppers Enough?
Underwatering and overwatering can both occur as problems for your Peppers, and both these problems can manifest with similar symptoms. For example, foliage discoloration and wilting can both result from either overwatering or underwatering. When your Peppers is underwatered, its leaves will be curling and drooping at the beginning. You will see a bunch of leaves turn less vigorous. Underwatering is also likely to cause stunted growth and poor overall development as both the flowers and this plant require a high amount of water. Overwatering is more likely to lead to disease, including rot. Overwatering may also lead to unpleasant smells rising from your plant's soil. The symptoms of underwatering will show up quicker than overwatering. Overwatering can also be evident in soil conditions. Mainly, if you notice a lot of standing water or waterlogged soils, overwatering is likely to occur.
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What to Do If Your Water Peppers Too Much or Too Little?
If you find that you have overwatered your Peppers and you are concerned about the associated risk of disease, you should intervene immediately. Often the best approach for an overwatered Peppers is to uproot it from its current growing location. Once the plant is out of the ground, you can allow its roots to dry a bit before planting it in a new growing location. Ensure that the new growing location has soil with good drainage. If you grow in pots, you may also want to move your plant to a pot with more or larger drainage holes. In the case of underwatering, all you will need to do is increase the frequency with which you supply water to your plant.
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How to Water Peppers Through the Seasons?
As alluded to above, your Peppers's water needs will repeatedly change throughout the seasons. During most of spring and summer, you should water your Peppers about once every week. As the heat of summer arrives, you should plan to increase your watering frequency to once or twice per day. In the late summer and fall, towards the end of the harvest period, you can reduce your watering frequency to about once per week. After harvest has ended, you can cease watering as your Peppers has reached the end of its life cycle and will require no further soil moisture.
The maintenance schedule of Peppers will require you to alter the amount of water you provide depending on the plant's current growth stage. Early on, especially if you grow your Peppers from seeds, you'll need to provide water often enough to maintain consistent soil moisture, which encourages root development. When the plant becomes old enough to produce flowers, it will likely need even more water. During the fruit development growth stage, your Peppers will likely need the most water out of any growth period, at times requiring water more than twice per day. Following that phase, the water needs of Peppers will decline significantly.
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What'S the Difference between Watering Peppers Indoors and Outdoors?
Whether you grow Peppers indoors or outdoors can also play a role in how you water them. Peppers that grows outdoors may receive water from natural rainfall, which will reduce the amount of supplemental water you should supply. However, it is incredibly rare for rainfall to adequately replace your watering entirely. Plants that grow indoors, along with any Peppers that grows in a container, will need to be watered more frequently than those that grow in the ground outdoors. If you choose this route, please make sure that the plant gets enough water by checking the soil moisture within your pot often to keep your Peppers healthy.
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Common Pests & Diseases

Common issues for Peppers based on 10 million real cases
Leaf beetles
Leaf beetles Leaf beetles
Leaf beetles
Leaf beetles are a class of colored insects 1 - 2 cm in size. They gnaw on leaves and petals resulting in small, round holes scattered over the surface.
Solutions: For less serious cases: Remove beetles, nymphs, and eggs. Remove all life stages of the beetles and kill them by placing them in a bucket of warm, soapy water. This can be done more easily by placing the bucket under affected leaves and shaking the plant. This method is most effective in the afternoon when leaf beetles are more active. Always dispose of insects in a sealed bag or container to avoid escape and spread. To treat more serious infestations: Apply organic insecticides. Use naturally-derived insecticides before moving on to synthetic insecticides. Neem oil and pyrethrum are naturally-derived insecticides that should be applied following label instructions. Apply synthetic insecticides. Examples of insecticides effective for leaf beetles include carbaryl, permethrin, and bifenthrin. Apply insecticides according to label instructions.
Leaf deformity
Leaf deformity Leaf deformity
Leaf deformity
Leaf deformities can have a variety of causes.
Solutions: Follow these steps to revive plants with abnormal leaves. Remove damaged leaves: Plants can recover from damage when given the time to do so. Remove any deformed leaves so they don't continue drawing energy from the plant. This also creates room for healthier ones to grow. Stop using herbicide: Though herbicide damage is challenging to diagnose, gardeners can potentially prevent deformed leaves by not using any and by strictly following manufacturers instructions. Spray insecticide: Prevent pests from inhabiting plant leaves by spraying with insecticide regularly and practicing good natural pest prevention techniques. Apply a balanced fertilizer: Solve nutrient deficiencies and excesses by using a well-balanced fertilizer (organic or conventional both work) before planting, and consider topdressing when signs of stress are apparent. Fix watering schedule: If plant leaves are curled downward due to too much or too little water, adjust the watering schedule so the soil is moist, but not damp. Remove infected plants: If the plant has succumbed to a viral infection, not much can be done to revive it. Remove and destroy all compromised plant material to prevent spread to other plants.
Caterpillars
Caterpillars Caterpillars
Caterpillars
Caterpillars are fleshy moth or butterfly larvae that come in an array of colors, patterns, and even hairstyles. They chew on leaves and flower petals, creating large, irregular holes.
Solutions: Even though caterpillars are diverse, they all chew on plant parts and can cause significant damage if present in large numbers. For severe cases: Apply insecticide. For an organic solution, spray plants with a Bacillus thuringiensis (Bt), which specifically affects the larval stage of moths and butterflies. Be sure to coat plants, since caterpillars need to ingest Bt for it to be effective. This will not harm other insects. Spray a chili extract. Chili seeds can be cooked in water to make a spicy spray that caterpillars don't like. Spray this mixture on the plants, but be aware it will also be spicy to humans. Introduce beneficial insects. Release beneficial insects to the garden that eat caterpillars, such as parasitic wasps. For less severe cases: Hand pick. Using gloves, pick off caterpillars on plants and dispose of them in a bucket of soapy water. Dust plants with diatomaceous earth. This powder is harmless to humans but irritates caterpillars. Therefore, it will make it difficult for caterpillars to move and eat.
Underwatering
Underwatering Underwatering
Underwatering
Leaves may wilt for a variety of reasons.
Solutions: The easiest (and most obvious) way to address underwatering is to fully hydrate the plant. However, this must be done carefully. A common mistake that many gardeners make is to douse their underwatered plants with water. This can overwhelm the roots of the plant and shock its system, something that can be even more damaging than the lack of water to begin with. Instead, water thoroughly and slowly, taking breaks to let the water slowly saturate through the soil to get to the roots. Use room temperature water, as cold water might be too much of a shock. In the future, shorten the time between waterings. A good rule of thumb is to check the soil around each plant daily. If it’s dry to at least two inches down, it’s time to water. If a container plant is repeatedly drying out very quickly, repotting into a slower-draining container might be a good idea, too.
Nutrient deficiencies
Nutrient deficiencies Nutrient deficiencies
Nutrient deficiencies
A lack of nutrients will cause a widespread yellowing of the leaves. The yellowing may begin at the base or top of the plant.
Solutions: There are several easy ways to remedy the nutrient deficiencies in soils. Use a water-soluble fertilizer. Fertilizers will include most or all of the macro and micro-nutrients the plants need to thrive. Adding some fertilizer to the soil will make those nutrients available and can combat deficiencies. Regularly apply organic fertilizer pellets. Organic fertilizers such as animal manures and bonemeal can supply plants with all the nutrients that they need to grow strong and healthy. Apply compost. Though not as finely tuned as artificial fertilizer, compost can nevertheless be rich in important nutrients and should be applied to the soil regularly. Apply nutrients via foliar application. In addition to supplementing the soil with nutrients, foliar fertilizer can be applied directly to the plant's leaves. Nutrients offered via foliar application are often taken up even quicker than those put in the soil, so the foliar application can be great for swiftly addressing specific deficiencies.
Fruit rot
Fruit rot Fruit rot
Fruit rot
Soft rot in the fruit can have a variety of causes.
Solutions: Prune out and destroy infected spurs and branches. Correct spacing between plants to reduce wind-born infection. Chemical fungicides may become necessary. Bird deterrents and biological or chemical treatments for insects will reduce fruit damage, making it harder for fungal infections to take hold.
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Leaf beetles
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Leaf beetles
Leaf beetles are a class of colored insects 1 - 2 cm in size. They gnaw on leaves and petals resulting in small, round holes scattered over the surface.
Overview
Overview
Leaf beetles range in size from 1.5 mm to 2 cm. Both adult beetles and their larvae eat the leaves of many different types of plants. There are over 35,000 different species of leaf beetles, in a variety of colors including gold, green, yellow-striped, and red striped. Some of these have been mistaken for ladybirds because of their shape and coloring. They can be oval, round, or elongated in shape. These insect pests are most active in spring and summer.
If not controlled, leaf beetles can do a lot of damage to vegetable crops and ornamental plants. They feed on the leaves, flowers, stems, roots, and fruits of different plants. They can fly, which means it's easy for them to move from one plant to another. Some species of leaf beetles only target one specific crop, while others will target many different types of plants. Although a lot of the damage that they cause is cosmetic, an infestation can weaken a plant and leave it prone to other more problematic diseases.
Symptom Analysis
Symptom Analysis
The first signs of a leaf beetles infestation are small visible holes in leaves. Leaves then become discolored and dark beetle droppings can be seen. As the leaves turn yellow and brown, they will drop off the plant onto the ground. Some leaves will appear skeletonized with only the veins still remaining.
Infestation begins in spring, when the adult beetles emerge from the soil and lay their eggs on the leaves of plants. When these eggs hatch, the young nymphs start munching on the leaves as they grow up. Once leaf beetles are large and mature, they'll fall to the ground and pupate in the soil over winter before starting the cycle all over again.
Leaf beetles also eat holes in fruits and vegetables. These can be seen as small round holes that sometimes have a larger brown area surrounding them.
Solutions
Solutions
For less serious cases:
  1. Remove beetles, nymphs, and eggs. Remove all life stages of the beetles and kill them by placing them in a bucket of warm, soapy water. This can be done more easily by placing the bucket under affected leaves and shaking the plant. This method is most effective in the afternoon when leaf beetles are more active. Always dispose of insects in a sealed bag or container to avoid escape and spread.
To treat more serious infestations:
  1. Apply organic insecticides. Use naturally-derived insecticides before moving on to synthetic insecticides. Neem oil and pyrethrum are naturally-derived insecticides that should be applied following label instructions.
  2. Apply synthetic insecticides. Examples of insecticides effective for leaf beetles include carbaryl, permethrin, and bifenthrin. Apply insecticides according to label instructions.
Prevention
Prevention
To prevent infestations of leaf beetles, follow these practices.
  1. Regularly check for beetles. To prevent large pest infestations, be proactive about frequently checking plants for pests and removing them quickly.
  2. Clear debris. Clear weeds and debris to remove areas where these beetles may overwinter and hide.
  3. Attract natural predators. Birds and other insects, such as wasps and ladybugs, are effective natural predators of leaf beetles. Encourage them to visit by including a diverse array of plants to provide habitat and food. Also, avoid applying broad-spectrum herbicides that can harm and kill beneficial insects.
  4. Plant aromatic herbs like mint, garlic, or rosemary, as these can repel leaf beetles.
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Leaf deformity
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Leaf deformity
Leaf deformities can have a variety of causes.
Overview
Overview
Leaf deformity manifests in the form of curled, cupped, or distorted leaves, often first seen in the spring. There are a number of different possibilities as to the cause and it will not always be easy to isolate the problem without laboratory analysis. In the majority of cases, however, the gardener should be able to isolate the cause through close examination of the plant and the local conditions.
Symptom Analysis
Symptom Analysis
The plant has developed abnormal leaves. They may look similar to leaf curl, but show other problems such as:
  • stunting
  • abnormal shapes
  • a bumpy texture
  • gaps between leaf sections
  • raised growths on the top surface
Disease Cause
Disease Cause
The causes are widespread and varied and the gardener will need to examine plants carefully as well as consider environmental factors.
Disease due to insect damage: Mites, aphids, and other insects that feast on plant leaves can leave them vulnerable to viral and bacterial disease. Some, like leaf galls and rust, produce distorted leaves. If the gardener sees insects on the plants, it is likely the insect is the culprit. Some mites are too small to see, and laboratory analysis may be required.
Herbicide exposure: Herbicides can stress plant leaves. This may lead to stunted growth and a curling, cupped appearance. Even if the plant owner didn't apply herbicides, herbicide drift and planting in contaminated soils can expose plants to these chemicals. If all plants in an area have deformed leaves, the cause is likely herbicides. Herbicide exposure is also characterized by narrow new leaves.
Less than ideal growing conditions: If plants are exposed to cold temperatures right as their leaves are coming out of the bud, they might become stunted and malformed. If deformed leaves occur right after a cold spell or frost, this is likely the cause. Too much and too little water can also cause deformed leaves. Leaves curling down but not distorting is more likely to be a watering issue than a leaf deformity.
Nutrient deficiencies: A lack of critical nutrients during the growing phase, including boron, calcium, and molybdenum, may lead plant leaves to grow stunted or disfigured. If a nutrient deficiency is to blame, the leaves will also show discoloring.
Fungal infections: a variety of fungal pathogens can distort leaves, as is the case with Peach leaf curl.
Solutions
Solutions
Follow these steps to revive plants with abnormal leaves.
  1. Remove damaged leaves: Plants can recover from damage when given the time to do so. Remove any deformed leaves so they don't continue drawing energy from the plant. This also creates room for healthier ones to grow.
  2. Stop using herbicide: Though herbicide damage is challenging to diagnose, gardeners can potentially prevent deformed leaves by not using any and by strictly following manufacturers instructions.
  3. Spray insecticide: Prevent pests from inhabiting plant leaves by spraying with insecticide regularly and practicing good natural pest prevention techniques.
  4. Apply a balanced fertilizer: Solve nutrient deficiencies and excesses by using a well-balanced fertilizer (organic or conventional both work) before planting, and consider topdressing when signs of stress are apparent.
  5. Fix watering schedule: If plant leaves are curled downward due to too much or too little water, adjust the watering schedule so the soil is moist, but not damp.
  6. Remove infected plants: If the plant has succumbed to a viral infection, not much can be done to revive it. Remove and destroy all compromised plant material to prevent spread to other plants.
Prevention
Prevention
  1. Fertilize properly. Keep your plants full of essential nutrients with a balanced fertilizer.
  2. Regularly monitor for pests. Remove all pests by hand or treat them with an insecticide. Early discovery and treatment will prevent the spread of pests and diseases.
  3. Provide the proper amount of water. Water until the soil is moist, but not damp. Only once the soil dries out, should the plant be watered again.
  4. Protect plants from cold. Bring plants indoors or protect them with frost cloth when bad weather is forecast.
  5. Avoid herbicide exposure. If the gardener or surrounding neighbors are applying herbicides, consider moving vulnerable plants to where they are less exposed to any chemicals that may be carried on the wind.
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Caterpillars
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Caterpillars
Caterpillars are fleshy moth or butterfly larvae that come in an array of colors, patterns, and even hairstyles. They chew on leaves and flower petals, creating large, irregular holes.
Overview
Overview
Caterpillars can cause problems for home gardeners. If not managed, these insects can defoliate a plant in just a matter of days. However, home gardeners face a challenge because these caterpillars eventually turn into beautiful butterflies and moths, which are important for pollination and the general ecosystem.
There are thousands of different species of caterpillars and many will only target certain plants. If caterpillars are posing a problem, they can be removed by hand, or gardeners can use insect-proof netting to protect their valuable plants.
Symptom Analysis
Symptom Analysis
Caterpillars are the larvae of butterflies and moths. During the warmer months, butterflies and moths that visit gardens will lay their eggs on the underside of leaves.
When the tiny eggs hatch, the young larvae emerge and start feeding on the leaves of the plant. Depending on how many larvae have hatched, they can easily defoliate the plant in a very short period of time. Caterpillars will shed their skin as they grow, around 4 or 5 times during this feeding cycle.
Symptoms of caterpillars eating plants appear as holes in the leaves. The edges of the leaves may be eaten away as well, and flowers can be affected as well.
Some are easy to see, but others need to be searched for. This is because their bodies are often camouflaged to look like part of the plant. Gardeners need to look carefully along the stems of the plant as well as under the leaves. Also, look for tiny white, yellow, or brown eggs that can be found in groups on the underside of leaves.
Once the caterpillar is fully grown, it transforms into a pupa or chrysalis. Then, after a period of time that varies according to the species, a butterfly or moth will emerge from the pupa and the cycle begins again.
Solutions
Solutions
Even though caterpillars are diverse, they all chew on plant parts and can cause significant damage if present in large numbers.
For severe cases:
  1. Apply insecticide. For an organic solution, spray plants with a Bacillus thuringiensis (Bt), which specifically affects the larval stage of moths and butterflies. Be sure to coat plants, since caterpillars need to ingest Bt for it to be effective. This will not harm other insects.
  2. Spray a chili extract. Chili seeds can be cooked in water to make a spicy spray that caterpillars don't like. Spray this mixture on the plants, but be aware it will also be spicy to humans.
  3. Introduce beneficial insects. Release beneficial insects to the garden that eat caterpillars, such as parasitic wasps.
For less severe cases:
  1. Hand pick. Using gloves, pick off caterpillars on plants and dispose of them in a bucket of soapy water.
  2. Dust plants with diatomaceous earth. This powder is harmless to humans but irritates caterpillars. Therefore, it will make it difficult for caterpillars to move and eat.
Prevention
Prevention
Prevention may require less effort than attempts to eradicate infestations that have already begun. Here are our top steps for prevention:
  1. Monitor plants. Check plants regularly for caterpillar eggs on leaves. If they do not belong to an endangered species, they should be squished.
  2. Use insect netting. Cover plants with insect netting to prevent butterflies and moths from laying eggs on plants.
  3. Apply diatomaceous earth. Apply DE to plants early in the season and reapply after rain.
  4. Encourage plant diversity. This will attract predatory insects including parasitic wasps.
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Underwatering
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Underwatering
Leaves may wilt for a variety of reasons.
Overview
Overview
Underwatering plants is one of the quickest ways to kill them. This is something that most gardeners are well aware of. Unfortunately, knowing exactly how much water a plant needs can be tricky, especially considering that underwatering and overwatering present similar symptoms in plants.
Therefore, it’s important to be vigilant and attentive to each plants’ individual needs.
Symptom Analysis
Symptom Analysis
As mentioned earlier, overwatering and underwatering present similar symptoms in plants. These symptoms include poor growth, wilted leaves, defoliation, and brown leaf tips or margins. Ultimately, both underwatering and overwatering can lead to the death of a plant.
The easiest way to determine whether a plant has too much water or too little is to look at the leaves. If underwatering is the culprit, the leaves will look brown and crunchy, while if it’s overwatering, they will appear yellow or a pale green in color.
When this issue first begins, there may be no noticeable symptoms at all, particularly in hardy or drought-tolerant plants. However, they will begin to wilt once they start suffering from a lack of water. The edges of the plant’s leaves will become brown or curled. Soil pulling away from the edges of the planter is a telltale sign, or a crispy, brittle stem.
Prolonged underwatering can cause a plant’s growth to become stunted. The leaves might drop and the plant can be more susceptible to pest infestations, too.
Disease Cause
Disease Cause
Underwatering is caused by, quite simply, not watering plants often or deeply enough. There is a heightened risk of underwatering if any of these situations apply:
  • Extreme heat and dry weather (when growing outdoors)
  • Grow lights or indoor lighting that is too bright or intense for the type of plant
  • Using fast-draining growing media such as sand
Solutions
Solutions
The easiest (and most obvious) way to address underwatering is to fully hydrate the plant. However, this must be done carefully. A common mistake that many gardeners make is to douse their underwatered plants with water. This can overwhelm the roots of the plant and shock its system, something that can be even more damaging than the lack of water to begin with.
Instead, water thoroughly and slowly, taking breaks to let the water slowly saturate through the soil to get to the roots. Use room temperature water, as cold water might be too much of a shock.
In the future, shorten the time between waterings. A good rule of thumb is to check the soil around each plant daily. If it’s dry to at least two inches down, it’s time to water. If a container plant is repeatedly drying out very quickly, repotting into a slower-draining container might be a good idea, too.
Prevention
Prevention
Always check the soil before watering. If the top inch of soil feels moist, though not wet, the watering is perfect. If it’s dry, water it immediately. If it feels soggy, you avoid watering until it dries out a bit more.
Also, make sure the lighting is sufficient for the species. Plants grow faster and need more water when there is intense light or lots of heat. Being aware of these conditions and modifying them, if possible, is a good way to prevent underwatering. Many container plants are potted in soil mixtures mean to be well-draining. Adding materials that retain moisture, like compost or peat moss, can also prevent these symptoms.
Other tips to prevent underwatering include:
  • Choose pots with adequately-sized drainage holes
  • Avoid warm temperatures
  • Use large pots with additional soil (these take longer to dry out)
  • Avoid terracotta pots, which lose water quickly
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Nutrient deficiencies
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Nutrient deficiencies
A lack of nutrients will cause a widespread yellowing of the leaves. The yellowing may begin at the base or top of the plant.
Overview
Overview
Nutrient deficiencies can be seen in many different ways on plants. Basically, the lack of nutrients will inhibit plant growth, produce weak stems and leaves, and leave plants open to infection from pests and diseases. Plants use the nutrients from the soil to help them with photosynthesis. This, in turn, produces healthy plant growth. Plants that lack adequate amounts of nutrients will look lackluster and unhealthy. Eventually, if this is not addressed, it will cause the plants to die. The most important nutrients that plants need are nitrogen, phosphorus, potassium, calcium, magnesium, and sulfur. Additionally, plants require small amounts of micronutrients such as iron, boron, manganese, zinc, copper, and molybdenum.
Symptom Analysis
Symptom Analysis
A common sign that plants are experiencing nutrient deficiencies is the yellowing of leaves. This may be an overall yellowing or leaves that are yellow but still have green veins. These leaves will eventually brown off and die.
Another sign is the loss of plant vigor. The plants may not be growing as well as they should or their growth may be stunted.
Below are some common symptoms that appear when plants are lacking in nutrients.
Nitrogen (N): Inner, older leaves yellow first. If the deficiency is severe, yellowing progresses outward to newer growth.
Potassium (K): Leaf edges may turn brown and crinkly, with a yellowing layer forming just inside of the edge. Older leaves tend to be impacted first.
Phosphorus (P): Lack of vigorous growth. Plants will appear stunted.
Zinc (Zn): Yellowing tends to occur first at the base of the leaf.
Copper (Cu): Newer leaves begin to yellow first, with older leaves yellowing only if the deficiency becomes severe.
Boron (B): Newer leaves are impacted first. Foliage may also become particularly brittle in cases of boron deficiency.
Disease Cause
Disease Cause
There are several factors that can lead to nutrient deficiencies, a situation where plants are not receiving the nutrients that they need. This could be because they are planted in nutrient-deficient soils, or that the soil's pH is too high or low. Incorrect soil pH can lock up certain nutrients, thus making them unavailable to plants. Lack of soil moisture can also be a problem, because plants need water to be able to absorb the nutrients from the soil.
Solutions
Solutions
There are several easy ways to remedy the nutrient deficiencies in soils.
  1. Use a water-soluble fertilizer. Fertilizers will include most or all of the macro and micro-nutrients the plants need to thrive. Adding some fertilizer to the soil will make those nutrients available and can combat deficiencies.
  2. Regularly apply organic fertilizer pellets. Organic fertilizers such as animal manures and bonemeal can supply plants with all the nutrients that they need to grow strong and healthy.
  3. Apply compost. Though not as finely tuned as artificial fertilizer, compost can nevertheless be rich in important nutrients and should be applied to the soil regularly.
  4. Apply nutrients via foliar application. In addition to supplementing the soil with nutrients, foliar fertilizer can be applied directly to the plant's leaves. Nutrients offered via foliar application are often taken up even quicker than those put in the soil, so the foliar application can be great for swiftly addressing specific deficiencies.
Prevention
Prevention
There are several easy ways to prevent nutrient deficiencies in plants.
  1. Regular fertilizing. Regular addition of fertilizer to the soil is one of the simplest and most effective ways to prevent deficiencies.
  2. Proper watering. Both over and under watering can adversely impact a plant's roots, which in turn makes it harder for them to properly take up nutrients.
  3. Testing the soil's pH. A soil's acidity or alkalinity will impact the degree to which certain nutrients are available to be taken up by plants. Knowing the soil's pH means it can be amended to suit the needs of the individual plants.
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Fruit rot
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Fruit rot
Soft rot in the fruit can have a variety of causes.
Overview
Overview
Fruit rot is quite common, and there are a large number of factors that can lie at the heart of this problem. Symptoms also vary from fruit to fruit and from cause to cause, but in general, one can recognize fruit that is rotten or starting to rot. Many of the most common causes of rotting are related to fungal diseases, which enter the fruit through wounds such as those caused by birds. The disease then spreads outwards from the wound. From there it can spread to neighboring fruit or be carried by the wind to plants further away.
Symptom Analysis
Symptom Analysis
Below are some of the broader symptoms to look out for in cases of fruit rot. If this occurs on just one or two fruit it may just be as the result of a small-scale infection, but if it is widespread then a fungal infection problem is likely.
  1. Small brown spots appear on the fruit.
  2. Brown spots expand, normally in concentric circles and the center starts to go soft and mushy.
  3. Mushiness spreads and grey or brown powdery pustules start to coat the fruit.
  4. Some fruit will drop but others may remain and gradually turn mummified.
Disease Cause
Disease Cause
Fruit rot is often caused by fungal infection. These fungi overwinter on fallen fruit, and then the spores are spread by the wind the following spring. Birds and sap-sucking insects can also act as vectors. Entry to new fruit is made considerably easier if there are wounds of any kind through which the spores can penetrate the skin. The healthier the tree or plant, the better able it is to defend itself from infection.
Solutions
Solutions
  1. Prune out and destroy infected spurs and branches.
  2. Correct spacing between plants to reduce wind-born infection.
  3. Chemical fungicides may become necessary.
  4. Bird deterrents and biological or chemical treatments for insects will reduce fruit damage, making it harder for fungal infections to take hold.
Prevention
Prevention
To prevent pests and disease infection:
  1. Pick fruits on time. Remove fruit once ripe to prevent opportunities for pests and fungal infections to take hold.
  2. Rake and clean debris. Remove and bury surrounding plant material that may host diseases.
  3. Prune branches and thin fruit. Remove ripening fruits so they do not touch one another and prune branches to improve air circulation (reducing the wet conditions in which fungi thrive).
  4. Consider preventative use of fungicide prior to fruit forming.
To prevent nutrient deficiency that weakens the plant:
  1. Add mulch. Adding a layer of mulch on top of the soil early in the season will keep moisture even.
  2. Use organic fertilizer. Plants given ammonia-based fertilizer cannot uptake calcium efficiently. Use compost, fish emulsion, liquid kelp or other organic fertilizer.
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distribution

Distribution Map

Habitat

Rivers, thickets, groves
distribution map
Native
Cultivated
Invasive
Potentially invasive
Exotic
No species reported
habit
plant_info

More Info

Plant Type
Plant Type
Herb
Flower Color
Flower Color
White
Bloom Time
Bloom Time
Late spring, Summer
Leaf Color
Leaf Color
Green
Purple

Name story

Cayenne pepper
Perhaps a common thing that comes to mind when hearing "Cayenne" is a luxury car, but the Cayenne pepper that is often mentioned in conversations is not the pepper of luxury car brands. The "Cayenne" mentioned here comes from its origin, the Cayenne region of French Guiana.
Red pepper||Green pepper||Bell pepper||Chili pepper
Capsicum annuum can be called different names, generally based on its taste and size. Larger and sweeter peppers are called red peppers, green peppers or bell peppers, while smaller and hotter peppers are called chili peppers.

Symbolism

Enthusiasm, healing, cleansing, desire

Usages

Garden Use
The many cultivars of peppers are commonly grown by veggie gardeners as annuals in warmer climates to use in their home kitchens and add a bit of color to their garden. However, peppers plants are sometimes planted in their own area in vegetable gardens, as it can easily outcompete other plants with its prolific seeds; but herbs and other veggies like tomatoes can be solid companions.
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Scarlet firethorn (Pyracantha coccinea) is a semi-evergreen shrub featuring spiky branches that are covered abundantly by clustered white flowers, which contrast attractively with its lustrous, deep green foliage. It also bears vibrant crimson berries which the birds devour. From the genus name, Pyracantha, "Pyr" means "fire" in Greek, while "Akantha" means "thorn" in English, which apparently refer to the plant's thorny stems and crimson fruits.
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Although its berries look juicy and tempting, the fruits and the root of american pokeweed are toxic and should not be eaten. American pokeweed is considered a pest species by farmers but is nevertheless often grown as an ornamental plant. Its berries can be made into pokeberry ink as well.
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Peppers
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Peppers
Capsicum annuum
Also known as: Chili pepper, Facing heaven pepper, Jalapeño, Anaheim pepper
Water
Twice per week
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Full sun
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pests

Common Pests & Diseases

Common issues for Peppers based on 10 million real cases
Leaf beetles
Leaf beetles  Leaf beetles  Leaf beetles
Leaf beetles are a class of colored insects 1 - 2 cm in size. They gnaw on leaves and petals resulting in small, round holes scattered over the surface.
Solutions: For less serious cases: Remove beetles, nymphs, and eggs. Remove all life stages of the beetles and kill them by placing them in a bucket of warm, soapy water. This can be done more easily by placing the bucket under affected leaves and shaking the plant. This method is most effective in the afternoon when leaf beetles are more active. Always dispose of insects in a sealed bag or container to avoid escape and spread. To treat more serious infestations: Apply organic insecticides. Use naturally-derived insecticides before moving on to synthetic insecticides. Neem oil and pyrethrum are naturally-derived insecticides that should be applied following label instructions. Apply synthetic insecticides. Examples of insecticides effective for leaf beetles include carbaryl, permethrin, and bifenthrin. Apply insecticides according to label instructions.
Learn More more
Leaf deformity
Leaf deformity  Leaf deformity  Leaf deformity
Leaf deformities can have a variety of causes.
Solutions: Follow these steps to revive plants with abnormal leaves. Remove damaged leaves: Plants can recover from damage when given the time to do so. Remove any deformed leaves so they don't continue drawing energy from the plant. This also creates room for healthier ones to grow. Stop using herbicide: Though herbicide damage is challenging to diagnose, gardeners can potentially prevent deformed leaves by not using any and by strictly following manufacturers instructions. Spray insecticide: Prevent pests from inhabiting plant leaves by spraying with insecticide regularly and practicing good natural pest prevention techniques. Apply a balanced fertilizer: Solve nutrient deficiencies and excesses by using a well-balanced fertilizer (organic or conventional both work) before planting, and consider topdressing when signs of stress are apparent. Fix watering schedule: If plant leaves are curled downward due to too much or too little water, adjust the watering schedule so the soil is moist, but not damp. Remove infected plants: If the plant has succumbed to a viral infection, not much can be done to revive it. Remove and destroy all compromised plant material to prevent spread to other plants.
Learn More more
Caterpillars
Caterpillars  Caterpillars  Caterpillars
Caterpillars are fleshy moth or butterfly larvae that come in an array of colors, patterns, and even hairstyles. They chew on leaves and flower petals, creating large, irregular holes.
Solutions: Even though caterpillars are diverse, they all chew on plant parts and can cause significant damage if present in large numbers. For severe cases: Apply insecticide. For an organic solution, spray plants with a Bacillus thuringiensis (Bt), which specifically affects the larval stage of moths and butterflies. Be sure to coat plants, since caterpillars need to ingest Bt for it to be effective. This will not harm other insects. Spray a chili extract. Chili seeds can be cooked in water to make a spicy spray that caterpillars don't like. Spray this mixture on the plants, but be aware it will also be spicy to humans. Introduce beneficial insects. Release beneficial insects to the garden that eat caterpillars, such as parasitic wasps. For less severe cases: Hand pick. Using gloves, pick off caterpillars on plants and dispose of them in a bucket of soapy water. Dust plants with diatomaceous earth. This powder is harmless to humans but irritates caterpillars. Therefore, it will make it difficult for caterpillars to move and eat.
Learn More more
Underwatering
Underwatering  Underwatering  Underwatering
Leaves may wilt for a variety of reasons.
Solutions: The easiest (and most obvious) way to address underwatering is to fully hydrate the plant. However, this must be done carefully. A common mistake that many gardeners make is to douse their underwatered plants with water. This can overwhelm the roots of the plant and shock its system, something that can be even more damaging than the lack of water to begin with. Instead, water thoroughly and slowly, taking breaks to let the water slowly saturate through the soil to get to the roots. Use room temperature water, as cold water might be too much of a shock. In the future, shorten the time between waterings. A good rule of thumb is to check the soil around each plant daily. If it’s dry to at least two inches down, it’s time to water. If a container plant is repeatedly drying out very quickly, repotting into a slower-draining container might be a good idea, too.
Learn More more
Nutrient deficiencies
Nutrient deficiencies  Nutrient deficiencies  Nutrient deficiencies
A lack of nutrients will cause a widespread yellowing of the leaves. The yellowing may begin at the base or top of the plant.
Solutions: There are several easy ways to remedy the nutrient deficiencies in soils. Use a water-soluble fertilizer. Fertilizers will include most or all of the macro and micro-nutrients the plants need to thrive. Adding some fertilizer to the soil will make those nutrients available and can combat deficiencies. Regularly apply organic fertilizer pellets. Organic fertilizers such as animal manures and bonemeal can supply plants with all the nutrients that they need to grow strong and healthy. Apply compost. Though not as finely tuned as artificial fertilizer, compost can nevertheless be rich in important nutrients and should be applied to the soil regularly. Apply nutrients via foliar application. In addition to supplementing the soil with nutrients, foliar fertilizer can be applied directly to the plant's leaves. Nutrients offered via foliar application are often taken up even quicker than those put in the soil, so the foliar application can be great for swiftly addressing specific deficiencies.
Learn More more
Fruit rot
Fruit rot  Fruit rot  Fruit rot
Soft rot in the fruit can have a variety of causes.
Solutions: Prune out and destroy infected spurs and branches. Correct spacing between plants to reduce wind-born infection. Chemical fungicides may become necessary. Bird deterrents and biological or chemical treatments for insects will reduce fruit damage, making it harder for fungal infections to take hold.
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Leaf beetles
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Leaf beetles
Leaf beetles are a class of colored insects 1 - 2 cm in size. They gnaw on leaves and petals resulting in small, round holes scattered over the surface.
Overview
Overview
Leaf beetles range in size from 1.5 mm to 2 cm. Both adult beetles and their larvae eat the leaves of many different types of plants. There are over 35,000 different species of leaf beetles, in a variety of colors including gold, green, yellow-striped, and red striped. Some of these have been mistaken for ladybirds because of their shape and coloring. They can be oval, round, or elongated in shape. These insect pests are most active in spring and summer.
If not controlled, leaf beetles can do a lot of damage to vegetable crops and ornamental plants. They feed on the leaves, flowers, stems, roots, and fruits of different plants. They can fly, which means it's easy for them to move from one plant to another. Some species of leaf beetles only target one specific crop, while others will target many different types of plants. Although a lot of the damage that they cause is cosmetic, an infestation can weaken a plant and leave it prone to other more problematic diseases.
Symptom Analysis
Symptom Analysis
The first signs of a leaf beetles infestation are small visible holes in leaves. Leaves then become discolored and dark beetle droppings can be seen. As the leaves turn yellow and brown, they will drop off the plant onto the ground. Some leaves will appear skeletonized with only the veins still remaining.
Infestation begins in spring, when the adult beetles emerge from the soil and lay their eggs on the leaves of plants. When these eggs hatch, the young nymphs start munching on the leaves as they grow up. Once leaf beetles are large and mature, they'll fall to the ground and pupate in the soil over winter before starting the cycle all over again.
Leaf beetles also eat holes in fruits and vegetables. These can be seen as small round holes that sometimes have a larger brown area surrounding them.
Solutions
Solutions
For less serious cases:
  1. Remove beetles, nymphs, and eggs. Remove all life stages of the beetles and kill them by placing them in a bucket of warm, soapy water. This can be done more easily by placing the bucket under affected leaves and shaking the plant. This method is most effective in the afternoon when leaf beetles are more active. Always dispose of insects in a sealed bag or container to avoid escape and spread.
To treat more serious infestations:
  1. Apply organic insecticides. Use naturally-derived insecticides before moving on to synthetic insecticides. Neem oil and pyrethrum are naturally-derived insecticides that should be applied following label instructions.
  2. Apply synthetic insecticides. Examples of insecticides effective for leaf beetles include carbaryl, permethrin, and bifenthrin. Apply insecticides according to label instructions.
Prevention
Prevention
To prevent infestations of leaf beetles, follow these practices.
  1. Regularly check for beetles. To prevent large pest infestations, be proactive about frequently checking plants for pests and removing them quickly.
  2. Clear debris. Clear weeds and debris to remove areas where these beetles may overwinter and hide.
  3. Attract natural predators. Birds and other insects, such as wasps and ladybugs, are effective natural predators of leaf beetles. Encourage them to visit by including a diverse array of plants to provide habitat and food. Also, avoid applying broad-spectrum herbicides that can harm and kill beneficial insects.
  4. Plant aromatic herbs like mint, garlic, or rosemary, as these can repel leaf beetles.
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Leaf deformity
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Leaf deformity
Leaf deformities can have a variety of causes.
Overview
Overview
Leaf deformity manifests in the form of curled, cupped, or distorted leaves, often first seen in the spring. There are a number of different possibilities as to the cause and it will not always be easy to isolate the problem without laboratory analysis. In the majority of cases, however, the gardener should be able to isolate the cause through close examination of the plant and the local conditions.
Symptom Analysis
Symptom Analysis
The plant has developed abnormal leaves. They may look similar to leaf curl, but show other problems such as:
  • stunting
  • abnormal shapes
  • a bumpy texture
  • gaps between leaf sections
  • raised growths on the top surface
Disease Cause
Disease Cause
The causes are widespread and varied and the gardener will need to examine plants carefully as well as consider environmental factors.
Disease due to insect damage: Mites, aphids, and other insects that feast on plant leaves can leave them vulnerable to viral and bacterial disease. Some, like leaf galls and rust, produce distorted leaves. If the gardener sees insects on the plants, it is likely the insect is the culprit. Some mites are too small to see, and laboratory analysis may be required.
Herbicide exposure: Herbicides can stress plant leaves. This may lead to stunted growth and a curling, cupped appearance. Even if the plant owner didn't apply herbicides, herbicide drift and planting in contaminated soils can expose plants to these chemicals. If all plants in an area have deformed leaves, the cause is likely herbicides. Herbicide exposure is also characterized by narrow new leaves.
Less than ideal growing conditions: If plants are exposed to cold temperatures right as their leaves are coming out of the bud, they might become stunted and malformed. If deformed leaves occur right after a cold spell or frost, this is likely the cause. Too much and too little water can also cause deformed leaves. Leaves curling down but not distorting is more likely to be a watering issue than a leaf deformity.
Nutrient deficiencies: A lack of critical nutrients during the growing phase, including boron, calcium, and molybdenum, may lead plant leaves to grow stunted or disfigured. If a nutrient deficiency is to blame, the leaves will also show discoloring.
Fungal infections: a variety of fungal pathogens can distort leaves, as is the case with Peach leaf curl.
Solutions
Solutions
Follow these steps to revive plants with abnormal leaves.
  1. Remove damaged leaves: Plants can recover from damage when given the time to do so. Remove any deformed leaves so they don't continue drawing energy from the plant. This also creates room for healthier ones to grow.
  2. Stop using herbicide: Though herbicide damage is challenging to diagnose, gardeners can potentially prevent deformed leaves by not using any and by strictly following manufacturers instructions.
  3. Spray insecticide: Prevent pests from inhabiting plant leaves by spraying with insecticide regularly and practicing good natural pest prevention techniques.
  4. Apply a balanced fertilizer: Solve nutrient deficiencies and excesses by using a well-balanced fertilizer (organic or conventional both work) before planting, and consider topdressing when signs of stress are apparent.
  5. Fix watering schedule: If plant leaves are curled downward due to too much or too little water, adjust the watering schedule so the soil is moist, but not damp.
  6. Remove infected plants: If the plant has succumbed to a viral infection, not much can be done to revive it. Remove and destroy all compromised plant material to prevent spread to other plants.
Prevention
Prevention
  1. Fertilize properly. Keep your plants full of essential nutrients with a balanced fertilizer.
  2. Regularly monitor for pests. Remove all pests by hand or treat them with an insecticide. Early discovery and treatment will prevent the spread of pests and diseases.
  3. Provide the proper amount of water. Water until the soil is moist, but not damp. Only once the soil dries out, should the plant be watered again.
  4. Protect plants from cold. Bring plants indoors or protect them with frost cloth when bad weather is forecast.
  5. Avoid herbicide exposure. If the gardener or surrounding neighbors are applying herbicides, consider moving vulnerable plants to where they are less exposed to any chemicals that may be carried on the wind.
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Caterpillars
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Caterpillars
Caterpillars are fleshy moth or butterfly larvae that come in an array of colors, patterns, and even hairstyles. They chew on leaves and flower petals, creating large, irregular holes.
Overview
Overview
Caterpillars can cause problems for home gardeners. If not managed, these insects can defoliate a plant in just a matter of days. However, home gardeners face a challenge because these caterpillars eventually turn into beautiful butterflies and moths, which are important for pollination and the general ecosystem.
There are thousands of different species of caterpillars and many will only target certain plants. If caterpillars are posing a problem, they can be removed by hand, or gardeners can use insect-proof netting to protect their valuable plants.
Symptom Analysis
Symptom Analysis
Caterpillars are the larvae of butterflies and moths. During the warmer months, butterflies and moths that visit gardens will lay their eggs on the underside of leaves.
When the tiny eggs hatch, the young larvae emerge and start feeding on the leaves of the plant. Depending on how many larvae have hatched, they can easily defoliate the plant in a very short period of time. Caterpillars will shed their skin as they grow, around 4 or 5 times during this feeding cycle.
Symptoms of caterpillars eating plants appear as holes in the leaves. The edges of the leaves may be eaten away as well, and flowers can be affected as well.
Some are easy to see, but others need to be searched for. This is because their bodies are often camouflaged to look like part of the plant. Gardeners need to look carefully along the stems of the plant as well as under the leaves. Also, look for tiny white, yellow, or brown eggs that can be found in groups on the underside of leaves.
Once the caterpillar is fully grown, it transforms into a pupa or chrysalis. Then, after a period of time that varies according to the species, a butterfly or moth will emerge from the pupa and the cycle begins again.
Solutions
Solutions
Even though caterpillars are diverse, they all chew on plant parts and can cause significant damage if present in large numbers.
For severe cases:
  1. Apply insecticide. For an organic solution, spray plants with a Bacillus thuringiensis (Bt), which specifically affects the larval stage of moths and butterflies. Be sure to coat plants, since caterpillars need to ingest Bt for it to be effective. This will not harm other insects.
  2. Spray a chili extract. Chili seeds can be cooked in water to make a spicy spray that caterpillars don't like. Spray this mixture on the plants, but be aware it will also be spicy to humans.
  3. Introduce beneficial insects. Release beneficial insects to the garden that eat caterpillars, such as parasitic wasps.
For less severe cases:
  1. Hand pick. Using gloves, pick off caterpillars on plants and dispose of them in a bucket of soapy water.
  2. Dust plants with diatomaceous earth. This powder is harmless to humans but irritates caterpillars. Therefore, it will make it difficult for caterpillars to move and eat.
Prevention
Prevention
Prevention may require less effort than attempts to eradicate infestations that have already begun. Here are our top steps for prevention:
  1. Monitor plants. Check plants regularly for caterpillar eggs on leaves. If they do not belong to an endangered species, they should be squished.
  2. Use insect netting. Cover plants with insect netting to prevent butterflies and moths from laying eggs on plants.
  3. Apply diatomaceous earth. Apply DE to plants early in the season and reapply after rain.
  4. Encourage plant diversity. This will attract predatory insects including parasitic wasps.
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Underwatering
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Underwatering
Leaves may wilt for a variety of reasons.
Overview
Overview
Underwatering plants is one of the quickest ways to kill them. This is something that most gardeners are well aware of. Unfortunately, knowing exactly how much water a plant needs can be tricky, especially considering that underwatering and overwatering present similar symptoms in plants.
Therefore, it’s important to be vigilant and attentive to each plants’ individual needs.
Symptom Analysis
Symptom Analysis
As mentioned earlier, overwatering and underwatering present similar symptoms in plants. These symptoms include poor growth, wilted leaves, defoliation, and brown leaf tips or margins. Ultimately, both underwatering and overwatering can lead to the death of a plant.
The easiest way to determine whether a plant has too much water or too little is to look at the leaves. If underwatering is the culprit, the leaves will look brown and crunchy, while if it’s overwatering, they will appear yellow or a pale green in color.
When this issue first begins, there may be no noticeable symptoms at all, particularly in hardy or drought-tolerant plants. However, they will begin to wilt once they start suffering from a lack of water. The edges of the plant’s leaves will become brown or curled. Soil pulling away from the edges of the planter is a telltale sign, or a crispy, brittle stem.
Prolonged underwatering can cause a plant’s growth to become stunted. The leaves might drop and the plant can be more susceptible to pest infestations, too.
Disease Cause
Disease Cause
Underwatering is caused by, quite simply, not watering plants often or deeply enough. There is a heightened risk of underwatering if any of these situations apply:
  • Extreme heat and dry weather (when growing outdoors)
  • Grow lights or indoor lighting that is too bright or intense for the type of plant
  • Using fast-draining growing media such as sand
Solutions
Solutions
The easiest (and most obvious) way to address underwatering is to fully hydrate the plant. However, this must be done carefully. A common mistake that many gardeners make is to douse their underwatered plants with water. This can overwhelm the roots of the plant and shock its system, something that can be even more damaging than the lack of water to begin with.
Instead, water thoroughly and slowly, taking breaks to let the water slowly saturate through the soil to get to the roots. Use room temperature water, as cold water might be too much of a shock.
In the future, shorten the time between waterings. A good rule of thumb is to check the soil around each plant daily. If it’s dry to at least two inches down, it’s time to water. If a container plant is repeatedly drying out very quickly, repotting into a slower-draining container might be a good idea, too.
Prevention
Prevention
Always check the soil before watering. If the top inch of soil feels moist, though not wet, the watering is perfect. If it’s dry, water it immediately. If it feels soggy, you avoid watering until it dries out a bit more.
Also, make sure the lighting is sufficient for the species. Plants grow faster and need more water when there is intense light or lots of heat. Being aware of these conditions and modifying them, if possible, is a good way to prevent underwatering. Many container plants are potted in soil mixtures mean to be well-draining. Adding materials that retain moisture, like compost or peat moss, can also prevent these symptoms.
Other tips to prevent underwatering include:
  • Choose pots with adequately-sized drainage holes
  • Avoid warm temperatures
  • Use large pots with additional soil (these take longer to dry out)
  • Avoid terracotta pots, which lose water quickly
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Nutrient deficiencies
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Nutrient deficiencies
A lack of nutrients will cause a widespread yellowing of the leaves. The yellowing may begin at the base or top of the plant.
Overview
Overview
Nutrient deficiencies can be seen in many different ways on plants. Basically, the lack of nutrients will inhibit plant growth, produce weak stems and leaves, and leave plants open to infection from pests and diseases. Plants use the nutrients from the soil to help them with photosynthesis. This, in turn, produces healthy plant growth. Plants that lack adequate amounts of nutrients will look lackluster and unhealthy. Eventually, if this is not addressed, it will cause the plants to die. The most important nutrients that plants need are nitrogen, phosphorus, potassium, calcium, magnesium, and sulfur. Additionally, plants require small amounts of micronutrients such as iron, boron, manganese, zinc, copper, and molybdenum.
Symptom Analysis
Symptom Analysis
A common sign that plants are experiencing nutrient deficiencies is the yellowing of leaves. This may be an overall yellowing or leaves that are yellow but still have green veins. These leaves will eventually brown off and die.
Another sign is the loss of plant vigor. The plants may not be growing as well as they should or their growth may be stunted.
Below are some common symptoms that appear when plants are lacking in nutrients.
Nitrogen (N): Inner, older leaves yellow first. If the deficiency is severe, yellowing progresses outward to newer growth.
Potassium (K): Leaf edges may turn brown and crinkly, with a yellowing layer forming just inside of the edge. Older leaves tend to be impacted first.
Phosphorus (P): Lack of vigorous growth. Plants will appear stunted.
Zinc (Zn): Yellowing tends to occur first at the base of the leaf.
Copper (Cu): Newer leaves begin to yellow first, with older leaves yellowing only if the deficiency becomes severe.
Boron (B): Newer leaves are impacted first. Foliage may also become particularly brittle in cases of boron deficiency.
Disease Cause
Disease Cause
There are several factors that can lead to nutrient deficiencies, a situation where plants are not receiving the nutrients that they need. This could be because they are planted in nutrient-deficient soils, or that the soil's pH is too high or low. Incorrect soil pH can lock up certain nutrients, thus making them unavailable to plants. Lack of soil moisture can also be a problem, because plants need water to be able to absorb the nutrients from the soil.
Solutions
Solutions
There are several easy ways to remedy the nutrient deficiencies in soils.
  1. Use a water-soluble fertilizer. Fertilizers will include most or all of the macro and micro-nutrients the plants need to thrive. Adding some fertilizer to the soil will make those nutrients available and can combat deficiencies.
  2. Regularly apply organic fertilizer pellets. Organic fertilizers such as animal manures and bonemeal can supply plants with all the nutrients that they need to grow strong and healthy.
  3. Apply compost. Though not as finely tuned as artificial fertilizer, compost can nevertheless be rich in important nutrients and should be applied to the soil regularly.
  4. Apply nutrients via foliar application. In addition to supplementing the soil with nutrients, foliar fertilizer can be applied directly to the plant's leaves. Nutrients offered via foliar application are often taken up even quicker than those put in the soil, so the foliar application can be great for swiftly addressing specific deficiencies.
Prevention
Prevention
There are several easy ways to prevent nutrient deficiencies in plants.
  1. Regular fertilizing. Regular addition of fertilizer to the soil is one of the simplest and most effective ways to prevent deficiencies.
  2. Proper watering. Both over and under watering can adversely impact a plant's roots, which in turn makes it harder for them to properly take up nutrients.
  3. Testing the soil's pH. A soil's acidity or alkalinity will impact the degree to which certain nutrients are available to be taken up by plants. Knowing the soil's pH means it can be amended to suit the needs of the individual plants.
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Fruit rot
plant poor
Fruit rot
Soft rot in the fruit can have a variety of causes.
Overview
Overview
Fruit rot is quite common, and there are a large number of factors that can lie at the heart of this problem. Symptoms also vary from fruit to fruit and from cause to cause, but in general, one can recognize fruit that is rotten or starting to rot. Many of the most common causes of rotting are related to fungal diseases, which enter the fruit through wounds such as those caused by birds. The disease then spreads outwards from the wound. From there it can spread to neighboring fruit or be carried by the wind to plants further away.
Symptom Analysis
Symptom Analysis
Below are some of the broader symptoms to look out for in cases of fruit rot. If this occurs on just one or two fruit it may just be as the result of a small-scale infection, but if it is widespread then a fungal infection problem is likely.
  1. Small brown spots appear on the fruit.
  2. Brown spots expand, normally in concentric circles and the center starts to go soft and mushy.
  3. Mushiness spreads and grey or brown powdery pustules start to coat the fruit.
  4. Some fruit will drop but others may remain and gradually turn mummified.
Disease Cause
Disease Cause
Fruit rot is often caused by fungal infection. These fungi overwinter on fallen fruit, and then the spores are spread by the wind the following spring. Birds and sap-sucking insects can also act as vectors. Entry to new fruit is made considerably easier if there are wounds of any kind through which the spores can penetrate the skin. The healthier the tree or plant, the better able it is to defend itself from infection.
Solutions
Solutions
  1. Prune out and destroy infected spurs and branches.
  2. Correct spacing between plants to reduce wind-born infection.
  3. Chemical fungicides may become necessary.
  4. Bird deterrents and biological or chemical treatments for insects will reduce fruit damage, making it harder for fungal infections to take hold.
Prevention
Prevention
To prevent pests and disease infection:
  1. Pick fruits on time. Remove fruit once ripe to prevent opportunities for pests and fungal infections to take hold.
  2. Rake and clean debris. Remove and bury surrounding plant material that may host diseases.
  3. Prune branches and thin fruit. Remove ripening fruits so they do not touch one another and prune branches to improve air circulation (reducing the wet conditions in which fungi thrive).
  4. Consider preventative use of fungicide prior to fruit forming.
To prevent nutrient deficiency that weakens the plant:
  1. Add mulch. Adding a layer of mulch on top of the soil early in the season will keep moisture even.
  2. Use organic fertilizer. Plants given ammonia-based fertilizer cannot uptake calcium efficiently. Use compost, fish emulsion, liquid kelp or other organic fertilizer.
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distribution

Distribution Map

Habitat

Rivers, thickets, groves

Map

distribution map
Native
Cultivated
Invasive
Potentially invasive
Exotic
No species reported
plant_info

More Info

Plant Type
Plant Type
Herb
Flower Color
Flower Color
White
Bloom Time
Bloom Time
Late spring, Summer
Leaf Color
Leaf Color
Green
Purple

Name story

Cayenne pepper
Perhaps a common thing that comes to mind when hearing "Cayenne" is a luxury car, but the Cayenne pepper that is often mentioned in conversations is not the pepper of luxury car brands. The "Cayenne" mentioned here comes from its origin, the Cayenne region of French Guiana.
Red pepper||Green pepper||Bell pepper||Chili pepper
Capsicum annuum can be called different names, generally based on its taste and size. Larger and sweeter peppers are called red peppers, green peppers or bell peppers, while smaller and hotter peppers are called chili peppers.

Symbolism

Enthusiasm, healing, cleansing, desire

Usages

Garden Use
The many cultivars of peppers are commonly grown by veggie gardeners as annuals in warmer climates to use in their home kitchens and add a bit of color to their garden. However, peppers plants are sometimes planted in their own area in vegetable gardens, as it can easily outcompete other plants with its prolific seeds; but herbs and other veggies like tomatoes can be solid companions.
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