How to Manage Pests

Pests in Gardens and Landscapes

Planting peppers and eggplants

Eggplants are generally not seeded directly, but grown from transplants because of their long growing season requirements. Peppers may be direct seeded in areas that have longer growing seasons. They are best planted on raised beds made by adding large amounts of soil amendments so that a bed is established above the previous level of soil. At each place a plant is desired, scatter seeds on moist soil, about 8 to 16 inches apart in the row. Plant more seeds than necessary so as to make up for any losses. Plant seeds in rows with 3 to 5 feet between rows. Push seeds just below the soil line. Fill these holes by scratching the surface, firm the soil lightly, and cover with a thin mulch of grass clippings or other organic material in order to hold soil moisture. Keep soil moist during the germination period. When the plants are about 3 inches high, thin to 2 feet apart down the row.

For transplants, use young plants, 3 weeks old with 4 to 6 true leaves, wider than tall, stocky, succulent, and slightly hardened to outdoor conditions. Make sure the planting site is level. Spread and mix organic matter and a high granular phosphorus fertilizer over the area. Mark where you want each plant and make the hole deep enough to bury the stem as far as the first leaf. Place plants about 18 to 24 inches apart in 3- to 5-feet rows. Press the soil firmly around the plant and water thoroughly to remove any air pockets. If transplanting in the summer, shade the plants in the middle of the day for the first week or use floating row cover.

Direct seed


Statewide IPM Program, Agriculture and Natural Resources, University of California
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