Hello From North Florida (New Grower Question)

Hello, all! I have been lurking here for the past few days, as I have recently taken an interest in growing, mainly peppers. I bought a mature (I'm assuming that's the term because it's fruit bearing) Ghost Chili plant and that sparked my interest. Now, as I do with all my hobbies, I have become fully obsessed with the idea of growing a variety of delicious peppers for my friends and family to enjoy. I was recommended to visit rareseeds.com, where I purchased seeds for the Carolina Reaper, chocolate habanero, tam jalapeno, Jimmy Nardello Italian, and Ajvarski Sweet peppers. I also have bought 5 gallon pots for all varieties and some garden soil.

I know that most pepper plants can be grown as perennials. I have a Florida room which I feel would be ideal for overwintering and I would like to grow my plants in this fashion. Now, as basically a first time grower, I have a few questions I wanted to throw out.

1. I have read many articles about soils to use when planting these, but I'm not sure if growing them as a perennial changes what is needed under the dirt. Also, what do you add to keep the soil full of nutrients year after year? I bought some organic garden soil (https://www.lowes.com/pd/HARVEST-Organic-Harvest-Organics-1-5-cu-ft-Organic-Garden-Soil/1000162789). What else should I add to this, assuming I wanted to stay organic?

2. I know it's best to plant in the spring, but how does this relate to growing the peppers as perennials? Can I start germinating as soon as my seeds arrive, or should I just wait for next spring?

3. I read about someone having to assist in the pollination of the plant and then read conflicting stories. Is this necessary?

I appreciate you all for reading my post and for existing because this is a very helpful community when taking on a new adventure seems so daunting.


Extreme Member
First of all,...

Addressing your questions:
1) While you will get varied input, I've used Miracle-Gro potting MIX with some added perlite as soil tends to compact and is heavy for 5 gallon pails.
2) There are a few Floridians here that I'm sure will chime in as I'm in New England.
3)Peppers are self-pollinating and I've never had to assist them with this effort.
Thanks everyone for the welcoming so far and thank you, The_NorthEast_ChileMan, for the info! I have seen articles refer to adding organic matter and compost to the soil, but I am just unsure exactly what this is. I definitely want to stay organic.
Well, I realized today that the soil I had bought was garden soil instead of potting soil (luckily I noticed this before planting). So, I bought a few bags of the Harvest Organics Potting Mix. Anyone have any experience with this stuff? Anything I should add? I have heard a lot of negatives about Miracle Grow on here, but what about the Miracle Grow Performance Organics?