Brightly colored pepper cultivars for greenhouse production in Florida

Nicole L. Shaw, Daniel J. Gantliffe


Bell pepper (Capsicum annuum L.) grown in Florida has traditionally been field-grown and harvested at a maturegreen stage. However, the demand for high-quality colored pepper has led producers to look at pepper grown under protected structures. Thirty-six colored pepper cultivars (red, orange, yellow, chocolate, and purple) from both Israeli and Dutch seed companies were compared during the Fall 2000- Spring 2001 season in Gainesville, Fla. Seedlings were transplanted 28 July 2000 into 11-L black-polyethylene pots filled with medium-grade perlite and grown in a double-layer polyethylene- covered high-roof greenhouse with passive ventilation. Plants were pruned once to two stems and trellised during growth using the Spanish-style growing method. Plants were harvested 20 times from 13 Oct. 2000 until 8 Mar. 2001. Total marketable yield varied from 6.9 to 11.3 kg·m[sup-] depending on cultivar. 'Amos', 'Pekin', and 'Lion' produced the greatest marketable yields of the red, yellow, and orange cultivars, respectively. Marketable number of fruit per plant varied from 10.8 for larger-fruited cultivars (greater than 64 mm diameter) to 20 for smaller-fruited cultivars (less than 64 mm diameter) even though marketable weight per plant was the same (2.6 to 3.4 kg per plant). Number of fruit with blossom-end rot disorder or those that were culled, ranged from less than one fruit per plant to five fruit per plant depending on cultivar. Fruit quality characteristics such as average fruit weight, fruit height, fruit diameter, pericarp thickness, and presence of cracking or speckling were dependant on cultivar. Red cultivars 'Torkal' and 'Zambra', yellow cultivars 'Kelvin', 'Neibla', 'Taranto', and 'Bossonova', and orange cultivars 'Paramo', 'Lion', and 'Boogie' have proven suitable for production in Florida under protected conditions.


capsicum annuum; protected agriculture; hydroponic; soilless culture

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Proc. Fla. State Hort. Soc.     ISSN 0886-7283