Growing Chillies in a Greenhouse is a really effective method of producing bigger and earlier crops, and an Access Mini greenhouse is ideal for he keen chilli grower. Chillies need to be planted early in the season, as they are quite slow growing and also require plenty of light and warmth, so growing under glass real glass (not plastic) will boost the temperatures.
Ideally chillies need to be planted late January / early February, so achieve this you will probably need a heated propagator and some form of growing light. At Access we plant our Chillies right at the start of January and have a heated base and an LED grow light. However, as soon as temperatures permit, the plants are transferred to a south facing mini greenhouse with tubular heaters. If you are not able to propagate from seed, then you can purchase young chilli plants from specialist nurseries such as Sea Spring Seeds.
After about 8 weeks, the Chillies need to be transplanted to their final growing space. Growing chillies in a greenhouse in pots does allow the plants to be moved more easily, but they will require more feeding if they are container grown. Once transplanted they need plenty of light and warmth – ideally a heater should be used to maintain a minimum temperature of about 12 degrees – if the temperature drops too far at night, the plants will take a while to recover the next day.
One of the great benefits of an Access Mini greenhouse is the fact that they are glazed in real glass. Not only is the light transmission better than plastic, but unlike plastic, glass traps the heat. This means that when the sun is on the greenhouse, even if it is cold outside, the temperatures will rise to tropical levels. In fact in the greenhouses at Access, it is not unusual to record temperatures in their mid 20’s Celsius, even when it is freezing outside. Obviously, once the sun goes in the temperature will drop, but during the sunny period the Chillies will be growing.
In the UK, unless the Summer is exceptionally hot, it is unrealistic to grow Chilles outdoors. Therefore most gardeners will be growing chillies in a greenhouse. During the warmer months, the superb ventilation on an Access Mini greenhouse means that the temperatures can be controlled to prevent it becoming too warm. Optimum daytime temperatures for Chillies are between 25 – 30 degrees C (although this will depend on the variety). With an Access Mini greenhouse the panels can be easily slid to reduce temperatures, and an automatic louvre can be fitted.
Feeding is vitally important for good growth and cropping, especially if they are container grown. Plants can either be fed every week or two, or a weaker feed mix can be used every time the plants are watered. In the Summer months the plants will need to be watered every day. Once the fruits ripen, it is important to harvest regularly to ensure that the best yields are produced.