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General chilli q's. Some Aus based

hello all.

First i have read so many threads on here so im just after some trouble shooting, and some direct info for aus conditions.

I have tried germinating some bhut jolokia seeds in wet paper tower method on a heat mat. I measured the temp of the water mat and its actually 34 deg...im hoping i havnt killed the seeds after 2 weeks they havnt germinated :(

I just started planting some seeds again trying some different mediums. Im after some info on the method. I feel that if plants cant grow naturally natures way then there is something wrong with the species itself....So i wanted to get some germinating in few methods of soil etc.

Also for the Australian's when it starts to hit 40deg in perth in summer with our ozone problem will my chilli's need to be covered with shade cloth? id imagine full sun may kill them in that heat for a week???

Last question is, fertilising, i try to water them on the weekend with a seaweed fertiliser and occasionally some worm tea. Is this too much or should i only fertilise very rarely?? they will ultimately be living in very sandy soil that had hay (from the stable floor so it had pee in it) and horse manure mixed in (its now broken down in the veggie patch).

OK so here is the run down, any thoughts would be excellent...

My overwintered bulgarian carrot. starting to bloom again. i wonder why this died back so much BUT the one that was outside didnt have a problem??? its been producing all winter (only small amount)



  • This jalapeno came from teh same seedlings as the smaller ones. im confused why the smaller ones have struggled compared to the big one...they all had the same growing conditions??? its now starting to go pale yellowish. Im 90% its my fault for overwatering..i dont think the seaweed and worm tea mixture could hurt them that much??


  • Lastly here is my newest experiment.
Growing bhut jolokia,
I have tried wet cotton balls, nice 'soil' from inside the worm farm, its a good moisture holding medium. I mix a handful or so potting mix in there every so often. I have used some typical perth soil rubbish. Where i live the soil is basically 99% sand. Previously i had pixed bags and bags of fresh horse manure and hay into the soil. It doesnt look that nice but i have a lot of veggies growing in it now and i have some chillis growing in there too. The last row is a mix of worm castings and perth soil.

Ive put the seeds below the surface and watered. I have then put the black seed tray thing on a wet paper tower in a large plastic bag. Im using this plastic bag as a poor mans green house. The wet towel on the bottom will keep it moist in there and help to transfer warmth to the bottom of the uneven tray. (I HOPE).

The heat mat is making the soil 34 degress....i need to put some more paper in between the heat mat and the container to stop it absorbing too much heat >< i dont have a thermostat on it...


Wet paper tower inside the bag to keep it moist and humid and warm


Thanks everyone for reading!! i really hope to absorb some good info.
Hi mate...

I'm pretty new to this..and my first year of growing, but I'd say that yellowing plant is definitely overwatered....and 34 may be a tad too high for germination. I think around 28 is about right? Seeds may be toasted, but still worth keeping if you have the room. I have a Pimenta deneyde that took just over 90 days to germinate, so 2 weeks is still early days really.
Good luck!
yep, i went out to bunnings and bought one of their mini green house/germinating trays with the lid and the holes to open. I think it will be much better as the heat pad i have will then just heat the bottom which will heat the internal temperature. As the soil isnt directly touching the pad and heating up. I think thta way it will provide a nice warm environment and i can control the temp in the soil easier i guess by opening the vents etc.

I just put some cayennes, razzamatazza an a few others in there. As well as tomatoes, watermelon to get them started.
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Yeah, i use one of those Bunnings germination trays too...but mine is just stuck on top of our internet router, which coincidentally keeps the inside around the 28 degree mark :dance:
Between the different varieties I have tried in my first year and the different germinating methods, I found just sticking the seeds in a soil mix and spraying the surface a few times a day gave the best results....

I'm in Okinawa, I can't read the bag of soil I bought, the store had it labelled as top soil, and I haven't researched it, the only English on the bag says "Prince recycle productions". It's got rocks and sticks and clumps of clay mixed in, and so far everything seems to like it.... It compacts easy, but once the roots start spreading out in it, they grow like crazy.... Seeds have germinated faster in it than the seed starting mix, although the ones that germinated in the starting mix grew faster after germinating, and the seeds I germinated in wet paper towels didn't survive past two sets of true leaves once in dirt.... I've done the starting mix inside and outside covered and uncovered and outside uncovered was better overall.... It required more attention, but I'm always on my balcony anyways....

I haven't tried bhuts yet, my buddy at work did though, straight into the ground and none germinated....
yep they all seem to be difficult. Unless you really know what you are doing it feels like luck of the draw with the more specialised chillis.

I think the heat pad is heating my germinating green house thing too hot >< may have to try the router...
Hey :welcome: :)

34 is too hot but the seeds might still be ok. Using your thermometer test the temp in the germinator box with the heating mat under it. If it gets above 30 then put a layer of something between the heating mat and the box. Use something that will allow air to escape from between the mat and box.... like a foam mat etc. Experiment adding stuff until the temp stabilises at 29C. Stick the tray somwhere where there is no sun or heat variation thru the day like high on a shelf somewhere. The seeds don't need light until they sprout. Check them everyday until they sprout and then put them somewhere with light.

Are the seeds like little flat discs or like wrinkly discs? When they are extremely dried out they go all wrinkled. It means they keep for longer but are slightly harder to germinate. You might want to try soaking the seeds in half strength chamomile tea for 24 hrs before sowing into whatever medium you have. I do this and it helps. I usually get germination between 6 days to 2 weeks. After that if they aren't up I give up on them. Some people do get them sprouting months later tho.

In Perth when the summer heat reaches 40C you just have to keep your plants alive through it by making sure they don't completely dry out, and if they're in pots, the root zone doesn't overheat. So shadecloth will help, but keeping the pot in total shadow and the leaves in shadecloth-light is a good idea. They'll probably drop flowers and not produce any pods until the weather cools down a little bit so just keep them alive. You may already know that chillies do NOT like to be overwatered at all so you have to keep an eye on them and as soon as they start to wilt its time to water them again, and you can get your schedule that way.

Good luck with your grow.

edit: oh and ebay isn't the best place to get your seeds. Because it costs nothing to setup an ebay storefront, and all chilli seeds look basically the same, and you can't tell what they really are for at least a month or two it makes it easy for scammers.
thats true about the ebay thing.
I made sure i bought from someone that had 1000's of feedback and sales etc.

I got some 70% shadecloth last night, ill put it up on those ridiculously hot days.

I also bought 9 bags of mulch to cover teh soil (read 'sand') to stop it from drying out. Even on a 25 degree day if i water it in the morning its dry but the afternoon...

Ill not water the ones i have for a while, its definitely wet still in teh soil, the existing leaves were yellowing but the new ones are growing out nice and dark!