Learn which plants thrive in your Hardiness Zone with our new interactive map!

How to Fertilize Bell Pepper Plants

By Kathryn Hatter ; Updated September 21, 2017
Fertilize bell pepper plants twice in a growing season.
baby Jalapeno chilli pepper plants in nature image by Elena Moiseeva from Fotolia.com

Both experienced and novice gardeners can successfully grow sweet, green bell peppers in a home garden. Take care to protect the peppers from cold temperatures in the beginning of the growing season and from there these luscious vegetables require minimal care. Fertilize bell pepper plants with a starter fertilizer when you plant them and then use a balanced fertilizer after the plants set fruit in midsummer.

Work the starter fertilizer into the soil as you prepare the planting area for the pepper plants. Consult the package recommendations for the fertilizer amount to use for the size of your planting area. Sprinkle the fertilizer over the soil and work it in well with the garden spade. Rake the soil smooth.

Plant the pepper plants approximately 2 feet apart in rows spaced 2 feet apart. Cover the roots gently with soil. Provide generous water for the newly planted pepper plants.

Apply 2 inches of mulch around the plants approximately two weeks after planting to help the soil stay moist and to keep weeds from developing around the plants.

Brush aside the mulch when you notice the pepper plants setting fruit. Sprinkle the balanced fertilizer evenly over the soil around the pepper plants, consulting the package recommendations for amounts of fertilizer for the size of your growing area.

Scratch the fertilizer into the soil with the hand rake, taking care not to allow the fertilizer to touch the plant foliage. Water the soil generously immediately after working in the fertilizer.

Replace the mulch around the plants again.


Things You Will Need

  • Starter fertilizer
  • Garden spade
  • Rake
  • Pepper plants
  • Trowel
  • Hand rake
  • Balanced granular fertilizer (12-12-12)

About the Author


Kathryn Hatter is a veteran home-school educator, as well as an accomplished gardener, quilter, crocheter, cook, decorator and digital graphics creator. As a regular contributor to Natural News, many of Hatter's Internet publications focus on natural health and parenting. Hatter has also had publication on home improvement websites such as Redbeacon.