How to Help Pepper Plants Recover in the Garden


A wide variety of pepper plants grows in gardens, from mild bell peppers to the fiery ghost chili. These plants usually flourish without any serious issues, but if left without proper watering, drainage or sunlight, they will need help recovering normal health. Understanding the most common types of pepper plant problems and how to help resolve them is an important part of growing pepper plants in your garden.

Step 1

Transplant or plant the pepper plant in an area with loose, well-drained soil. Poor drainage is one of the most common problems with pepper plants. Without good drainage, any pepper plant will perish quickly or suffer from disease or fungi growth.

Step 2

Inspect the pepper plant for bug infestation. Checking the plant regularly helps ensure that no large infestations can take place, thus making the plant unhealthy or killing it. Infestation is very common on bell pepper plants. If you find any bugs, remove them by hand or with soapy water and a clean rag, gently dousing the plant then wiping it clean. The most common types of pepper plant bugs are cutworms, aphids (they cluster underneath leaves and cause spotting), flea beetles, hornworms, cornborers, whiteflies and fruitworms. Common signs of insects such as these include yellowing, wilting or dropping leaves; holes eaten through the foliage or droppings.

Step 3

Establish a watering cycle for the pepper plants. Too much moisture makes the plants more susceptible to disease. Water the pepper plants when the top two to three inches of the soil feels dry.

Step 4

Prevent sunscald on your pepper plant by making sure it does not receive too much direct sunlight. Symptoms of sunscald include the peppers' color lightening and a papery texture. Most pepper plants need about six hours of sunlight per day, but this varies depending on the sun's intensity in your area.

Step 5

Grow pepper plant varieties that are disease resistant to prevent any bacterial diseases that cause the plant to grow poorly. A common bacterial infection is bacterial leaf spot, in which small yellow spots appear on leaves before enlarging and making the leaves drop. Southern blight also occurs in warmer climates where the roots rot and the pepper plant slowly dies. The most common reasons pepper plants get root rot or bacterial diseases is because the climate is too warm and humid. Harvest fruit right away once it is fully grown to help prevent southern blight.

Things You'll Need

  • Trowel
  • Good quality potting soil
  • Soap water, if necessary
  • Disease resistant varieties


  • Gardening Know How: Pepper Plant Problems
  • Veggie Gardening Tips: Vanishing Pepper Plants
Keywords: caring for peppers, pepper plant care, pepper plant problems

About this Author

Lauren Wise has more than eight years' experience as a writer, editor, copywriter and columnist. She specializes in food, wine, music and pop culture. Her writing has appeared in various magazines, including "Runway," "A2Z," "Scottsdale Luxury Living" and "True West." Wise holds a Bachelor of Arts in journalism from Arizona State University.