Hybrid seed is the result of crossing two or more varieties of a specific species to bring about the desired qualities of each. In vegetables, like peppers, the hybrid may be developed to produce the best flavor, size and time to maturity. When seeds are saved from the hybrid and replanted, the new seedling will not retain the characteristics of the parent plant. You may, however, discover some interesting varieties by saving hybrid pepper seeds.
Harvest seeds from your pepper plants in fall. Allow the pepper to mature on the vine. Green peppers generally turn red when mature. If fall approaches before peppers are mature, pull the plant up by the roots and hang in a dry well-ventilated area until peppers are dry.
Cut the bottom from the pepper and remove the seeds. Separate any plant debris from the seeds and spread them on a paper towel or folded newspaper.
Allow to dry completely. This may take from a day or two to a week or more depending on the moisture content in the seeds. Seeds are sufficiently dry when brittle. Folding a seed results in a break, not a bend. Store seeds in a plastic food storage bag or paper envelopes in a cool dark area.
Plant seed in pots in the spring 8 to 12 weeks before the last expected frost. Fill peat pots with seed starter and plant seeds to a depth of 1/4 inch. Cover and firm down gently with your hands. Water thoroughly and keep soil evenly moist until seedlings appear. Some varieties germinate within 7 to 10 days, but some hot peppers may take 4 to 6 weeks.