Tuesday, 15 April 2014

Transplanting chillis

My chillis had outgrown the little 3" pots in which they began their lives. Leaving them in those any longer would risk having them run out of space and nutrients and making them pot-bound.

As you can see, the size of the plants varies a lot. Even plants of the same variety can be very different in size.

As I normally do, I have put the chillis into intermediate-size (5") pots, not the big 10" pots that will be their final homes. I'm not sure of the science of this, but they always say that for some reason tiny plants don't like being put into huge pots. Here you can clearly see the difference between the 3" and the 5":

It was good to see that the plants all had a strong root structure.

I potted up one plant of each of 8 different varieties. I have some other, smaller, ones coming on, so I intend to eventually have 12 plants. This is about as many as I can conveniently manage, considering that I will also have potted tomatoes and potatoes to look after. I'll probably not have much trouble finding homes for my spare ones.

For the time being the chillis will live outside in one of the mini greenhouses during the day, but will be brought indoors overnight, until such time as the night-time temperatures rise to double figures.


  1. They're looking nice healthy specimens. I'm sure they'll go on to produce well.

  2. Wow, your plants look brilliant. Mine are still at the cotyledon leaf stage :{

    I was taught the reason for only potting on into the next size pot up was to prevent water-logging. Put a small plant into a huge pot and there will be more water in the soil than the little plant needs, therefore you have a risk that the roots will get drowned.

  3. Any professional gardener would envy your chillies! They look so healthy and strong, wish I had some too.

  4. They look wonderfully healthy, much bigger than mine!

  5. Very nice plants, indeed, Mark. You should have a nice crop of Chillies!

  6. I recently read a couple of feasible reasons why going directly to a large pot isn't always best:

    1. The roots stay warmer in a smaller pot as they are nearer to the sides.

    2. As the roots hit the sides of a smaller pot they are more likely to fork/branch out, making a denser root ball structure.

    Both sound possible, as does Jayne's water-logging reason!

    1. Thanks, Gwil. Both of those reasons sound credible. Are you a chilli-grower too?

  7. I did it too and i am writing a post about... In italy we say "we are in the same boat"!

  8. I have come across the same reasons as already described. Strange isn't it that seeds germinating in the ground don't suffer as they are in a huge 'pot'


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