Have I done something wrong?

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  #1  
Old 02-24-03, 04:07 AM
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Have I done something wrong?

I have some chilli pepper plants, which I had planted approx two years ago from seeds. They grew very tall in size and used to produce quite a large amount of peppers. This winter I have pruned the overall shape, and cut the top of the truck in order to shorten them a bit. I thought that winter is the best time for pruning since it is their dormancy time!
I didnít use paint to cover the newly cut areas since Iíve heard from professionals that they heal better if done naturally. However, lately Iíve noticed that the area around the trimmed branches is drying up. Day by day Iím noticing this drying up state getting bigger and bigger throughout the whole branches.

BtwÖ I didnít trim the rootsÖ only the branches.

Have you ever noticed such condition? Is it some sort of decease?

Any help would be appreciated.
Thanks in advance.
 
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  #2  
Old 02-24-03, 08:00 PM
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Smile Hot peppers

Living in Western NC it seems as if I am to get any qty of my favorite HOT peppers, I have to let them go dormant in the Greenhouse until the next season & they then go wild outside in their 10 gallon pots.

Back some 10 years ago, I also trimmed my 1 year old Tabasco plant in Feb, & I thought before spring growth in Mar, that I had killed it. The limbs dried back as far as they did the first time, & in late March she busted out with a vengance. 2 & 3 year old pepper plants are robust to say the least.

I feel now, that the branches drying back is a natural die back & seal off, so I never cut them back even when it is 5 years old. Many times they(Branch Tips) just seem to fall off after it gets growing well in the Summer.

Peppers from around the world, is not all I grow & for 30 years, I have applied the Tree wound & prunning paste, to every plant I have ever damaged or prunned, including the cut sides of my perennials when devided.

You can surely chose for yourself, but I feel I have done as much good putting the salve on my plants wounds, as putting bag balm on my Sons nick & wounds. I always thought of covering a wound, as pure common sense

Any way I did not think of putting the wound dressing on my pepper at that time when I cut it back, & I just wonder if it may just work, to stop it from drying out more. If you don't want to use the Tree dressing, try melting some wax on the stove & take a small paint brush and wipe the wax on and pour some cold water on right away to cool it down. One thing is for sure, the hollow insides will not be exposed to the air with it's pathogens.

The pepper should come back soon anyway, as it is Feb and If you put it in a south window it should start to sprout. Then you can feed it & get it strong enough, to go outside again.

Best of luck to you, I would hate to see a great Hot Pepper plant go. In Panama they grew like trees, & lived for decades

Marturo
 
  #3  
Old 02-24-03, 11:43 PM
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Marturo,

Are you saying that the drying up is caused because the trimmed branches is being exposed to air?

In my post I forgot to mention one detail. When I tried pressing the dried parts with my fingures it felt like they became hollowed inside. I don't think this is a good sign and I don't see too much hope for such branches to put on new leaves.

Thanks

Regards
RA
 
  #4  
Old 02-25-03, 09:49 AM
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Smile Talkin Peppers

In order to get this worked out, let's start with what I do with my Pepper plants, like Chille Tipin or Scotch Bonnet, to over Winter them.

The pepper grows well all season long & starts getting yellow leaves late summer/Early Fall. It's then I stop wattering them, & bring them into the Greenhouse.

The plants lose their leaves & the tips of all branches dry back brown and they look dead untill the first sprig of green pops out in Spring. I do however tug from time to time to make sure the plant is still alive throughout the winter.

Before we built the Greenhouse, I used to put them up in the Utility room, just a south facing room for laundry.

When I tried pressing the dried parts with my fingures it felt like they became hollowed inside.
When I checked my Plants this AM I to got the feeling that when I took browned stem between thumb & fore finger I got a feeling of a hollow stem. Not wet & mushey, but not hard and brittle either.

I tried my test by pulling up on the large main stem & it was firmly rooted, even on the Cherry pepper & that has allways gotten it's leaves last anyway.

Spending so much time in the Tropics growing up. What a Northern Tree farmer does in the cold to his temprate plants, is far different than what a Farmer does when his plants don't go dormant like the Temprate plants in the Tropics.

Peppers in South America grow into small trees & other than removing a broken branch from a storm, we never pruned these pepper bushes. That comes from living there, keeping what amounts to Tropical plants alive more than 1 growing season in our Temprate climate, is a plant of a different color. Each needs it's own way & since I have been saving and growing peppers as long as 8 years, with only a few plants lost, tells me I'm on the right track.

Now in order for us to see what may be going on you need to let me know some things also. Like what does it feel like when you gently pull up on the plant by it's stem?

How long have the plants been in the pots they are in? Where do you keep them in Winter? Have you watered them since they lost their leaves?


One question, I have is on your statement that you did not trim the roots. Did you read somewhere that you should root prune a pepper plant?

We start in 4" pots & the first season they are transplanted into the ten gallon pots for at least 5 or 6 years of great pepper production. Once the plant has gone through it's first season, we have a plant so full of flowers & peppers by the next July we have to use small bamboo sticks to prop the branches up.

I don't think I would give up unless the plants are slipping out of the soil like the rootlets are dead. I have had a few that I thought were dead untill I saw leaf sprouts poping up around the soil next to the stem.

So the answer is no, I am not even venturing a guess, as to what is happening to your plants without more info, or seeing them in person. I only mentioned using the pruning paste or wax, if you thought you opened the limbs up to water loss & wanted to try to seal and disinfect the areas you cut open.

I have a lot of Farmer friends who are pepper heads like me, & as far as I know, none of us prune or remove anything from the plant untill they are growing well the next season. Then some will remove the dead limbs for looks without problems.

Marturo
 
  #5  
Old 02-25-03, 10:12 AM
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Marturo,

As I have already mentioned I planted these chilli plants some two years ago from seeds. Last year I transplanted them in containers of around 20cm in diameters. In these containers although small, by providing the necessary nutrients I managed to bring them up to around 1 meter in height.

I keep them in the backyard throughout the whole year. Of course in winter they are exposed to rain, wind and low temperatures. Last winter they survived in such conditions and hence I didnít bother bringing them somewhere inside this winter!

Concerning you last question Iíve read that the roots must be trimmed in proportion to the stem and branches. Here is the link it is within the same site:-

http://doityourself.com/shrubs/prunt...-e2gar0125.htm

Actually the information refers to trees rather than plants but I think the same concept applies.

Regards
RA
 
  #6  
Old 02-25-03, 12:36 PM
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Smile Hot peppers

Hi r_abela,

As a comercial grower of Antique & Heirloom Fruit & Vegetables here @ The Lucky horseshoe Farm. My one plant hobby if a Farmer can have a hobby, with plants LOL.

My Hobby is growing and making sauces, extracts, and powders from as many Hot pepper varities, I can get my Farmer friends form overseas to send me.

I have tried to give you some Ideas I have learned over the years. Water can cause a lot of problems in a Hibernating pepper plant, also I might sugest a larger Pot of at minimum of 2 gallons.

The reason for the 10 Gallon pots in our case, is to put in enough Organic amendments in order for the plant to have the food supplies, to grow well & produce good Qtys of fruit for at least 5 to 8 years.
 
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