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How to Grow Chillies

Chillies are really easy to grow from seed and come in many different varieties, from relatively mild to red-hot!

They are a great addition for adding extra flavour and spice to to stir-fries, curries, Mexican food or if you’re brave, to add to vodka and chocolate desserts.

You can can start growing chillies from seed or plant up small plants that can be brought from your local garden centre. Read below to find out how to grow chillies.


When to Sow

Chillies are best sown from seed between January to April.

Chillies need plenty of warmth to germinate. In January, you can start growing chillies indoors in a heated propagator on the windowsill. You can start to grow them outside in a greenhouse once the weather gets warmer and after the last frost.


How to Sow Seeds

  1. Simply open the bag of compost and tip it into a seed tray or small pots. We recommend using John Innes Seed Sowing Compost or Gro-Sure Seed and Cutting Compost.
  2. Scatter the seeds on top and cover with a light layer of compost or vermiculite
  3. Water well. Chillies do well in moist compost.
  4. If you don’t have a windowsill propagator, use cling film to cover your seed trays as this helps to keep in the heat.
  5. Depending on the outside temperature, place the seed trays/small pots onto a windowsill or in a greenhouse.
  6. Check seedlings regularly and make sure the compost is evenly moist but try to avoid getting it soaking wet.
  7. Germination usually takes around 7-10 days.


Transplanting Chilli Plants

Once your chilli plants are strong enough to handle without breaking, transplant them into individual pots of compost approx 7.5cm in size. Our New Horizon All Veg  Compost is peat free and contains the essential nutrients which is perfect for chillies.

Again, depending on which month and the outside temperature when you pot-on your chillies, locate them on your windowsill until the last frost has passed.

Finally, transplant them into their final positions and pot each chilli plant into their own separate 2L container or plant them in a grow bags. The New Horizon All Veg compost packaging has been designed so you can plant straight into the bag just as you would a grow bag! The New Horizon Tomato Planter can also be used. If the weather is warm, you can place your chillies outside or in a greenhouse.



Chillies need warm, sunny days to help them ripen. You can usually harvest your chilli peppers in July. To do this, use a sharp knife or secateurs to remove the fruit from the plant. Harvesting them regularly will encourage the plant to produce more chillies.


Common Problems

Aphids and Whiteflys may be a problem when growing chilli peppers.

Use Growing Success Greenhouse Whitefly traps to combat and control the problem

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