Tips for Growing Poblano Peppers in the Ground (Important Watch Outs!)

Do you want to grow poblano peppers but are unsure if you want to plant them directly in the soil? Or do you have your mind set on an in-the-ground garden but aren’t sure where to start? You’ve come to the right place!

When growing poblano peppers in the ground, you should amend your soil with organic material, place your garden in full sun, sow your seeds as directed, and take measures against pests and diseases. Keep in mind that drainage may be an issue and it can take years to build up a soil ecosystem that’s ideal for poblano peppers.

Keep reading for an extensive guide about growing poblano peppers in the ground!

Is it okay to grow poblano peppers in the ground?

Before you go crazy planning an in-ground garden, let’s discuss whether or not it’s even okay!

It is okay to grow poblano peppers in the ground. There are many perks including being the cheapest way to start a garden, that you will be making the best use of the space available, and more. That being said, your peppers will be more susceptible to pests and diseases, drainage may be a problem, and it is inaccessible for those who can’t bend down.

There are many pros and cons to growing poblano peppers directly in the ground!

Some people would never consider gardening in any other fashion than directly in the ground. They may feel a connection to nature when growing directly in the ground that they haven’t been able to replicate in pots or raised beds.

Other people would never even dream of gardening directly in the ground – they may find it unsightly or be die-hard fans of raised beds.

There are also reasons that go beyond simple preference. Gardening directly in the ground is the cheapest option and often the most convenient. You will also have the most available garden space.

But if you have trouble bending down or your soil is prone to diseases and pests, you won’t have much luck growing directly in the ground.

All of this is just the tip of the iceberg. Read on to learn more!

Potential benefits of growing poblano peppers in the ground

There are plenty of benefits to growing poblano peppers in the ground. There’s a reason so many people prefer in-ground gardens. Actually, there are many reasons!

Potential benefits of growing poblano peppers in the ground include:

  • Cost – Growing poblano peppers in the ground is the cheapest way to start your garden. It’s cheaper to grow directly in the soil you already have rather than buying bags of soil, pots, and raised beds. Even though you have to amend your soil, creating your own compost is free – even if it means holding off on your garden for a year or so.
  • Aesthetics – You may find it more aesthetically pleasing than raised beds or pots. Some people like the natural look of an in-ground garden. 
  • Space – You will have the most available square footage. When you aren’t restricted to pots or raised beds, you can make your garden as large as you’d like! Depending on how large your yard is, you can potentially grow a lot of poblano peppers and other vegetables.
  • Connection – You may find it more rewarding to work directly in the ground. Some people just like getting on their hands and knees to work in the soil! If you like to get dirty and feel one with the earth, you may find that an in-ground garden is your most rewarding option.

As you can see, there are many great reasons to grow your poblano peppers directly in the ground. Now let’s explore some of the potential reasons it might not be the best choice for you.

Potential issues growing poblano peppers in the ground

Even though growing in the ground is the method of choice for lots of people, there are still a lot of issues you can run into. Depending on your circumstances, these issues may be make-or-break for you. 

Potential issues growing poblano peppers in the ground include:

  • Pest control – Harder to keep pests and diseases away. When you’re growing in a pot or raised bed, you have an extra layer of protection against pests and diseases. Growing directly in the ground exposes your plants to more potential dangers.
  • Aesthetics – You may not find it as aesthetically pleasing as raised beds or pots. Some people really enjoy the appearance of an in-ground garden. On the other hand, others like the “cleaner” or “tidier” look of raised beds or pots. Look at some images online before committing!
  • Drainage – Drainage may be an issue in two different ways. If you live somewhere with a lot of clay soil like in the Northeast, your garden may drain very slowly. Comparatively, sandy soils such as in Central Florida will drain quickly and require more water.
  • Accessibility – If you’re disabled, older, or even just have bad knees- it can be extremely hard to get all the way onto the ground. Raised beds or pots on tables are a good solution if you run into this issue.
  • Soil maintenance – Regenerating and amending ground soil can potentially take years. Incorporating healthy compost and organic material into your natural soil is a long process. It’s not just a one-and-done deal! Not to mention using the right cover crops to fix nitrogen into the soil.

With these potential pros and cons in mind, keep reading for some tips on how to have your best in-ground poblano pepper garden.

Do poblano peppers need to be staked or caged?

While you may associate cages with tomatoes, plenty of plants benefit from stakes and cages.

Poblano peppers do well with stakes and cages because the peppers are so heavy. Taking some of that burden off of your pepper plants will allow them to produce higher yields.

The less energy your poblano peppers have to spend – on anything, really – the more they will thrive.

For example, if they have adequate fertilizer, they won’t have to search hard for nutrients. This saves energy and produces higher yields.

Likewise, spacing your pepper plants far enough apart decreases competition among them so they’re not wasting energy fighting for sun, water, or nutrients.

So keeping all of this in mind, your peppers will thank you for taking some of the burden off of their shoulders – I mean stems!

5 tips for growing poblano peppers in the ground

Maybe by now you’ve fully decided that growing in the ground is right for you. Luckily, we’ve got some tips!

My top five tips for growing poblano peppers in the ground are:

  1. Amend your soil
  2. Beware of pests and diseases
  3. Place your garden wisely
  4. Sow your seeds correctly
  5. Consider creating a barrier around your garden

Now let’s dive head-first into these tips!

Amend your soil

Soil is arguably the most important part of gardening. It controls nutrients, drainage, bioavailability, how easily roots can grow, and more.

Amend your soil with mature compost and organic material. One teaspoon of compost can contain a billion microorganisms, all of which help your poblano peppers thrive!

It’s vital to amend your soil with mature compost and organic material to maximize nutrients and encourage a good level of drainage.

Did you know? One teaspoon of compost can contain a billion microorganisms! These microorganisms are the key to a thriving garden.

It’s common to have in-ground soil that’s high in clay or sand. Organic matter is a great remedy for these types of soils by improving soil aeration, biological activity, nutrient levels, and water drainage.

Beware of pests and diseases

Pests and diseases can completely ruin your entire poblano pepper harvest.

Since you’re growing directly in the soil that’s naturally in your backyard, you have less control over what pests and diseases may be lurking. You will need to be diligent about protecting your garden from both.

There are many soil-borne fungi – and even viruses! – that can affect peppers. When you’re working with soil that’s just naturally in your yard, you have very little control over what diseases may be present.

Likewise, ground gardens are incredibly susceptible to pests. No matter where you live, pests are bound to be waiting to pounce.

Whether it’s deer or squirrels or ants, there will always be pests who would love a bite of your poblano pepper plant. 

Some people put up fences or nets to keep pests away, while others opt for natural products for pest management

You can always use traditional pesticides, but you likely already know that natural options are better for the health of your garden, your local ecosystem, and yourself!

Place your garden wisely

Poblano peppers need sun – and lots of it!

Choose the location of your garden wisely to ensure your poblano peppers receive lots of sunlight. Track where the sun falls in your yard so you can pick the best place to put your garden!

Poblano peppers thrive in full sun. They’ll still grow with a couple of hours of shade per day, but you’ll find a huge correlation between your yield and the amount of sun your peppers get.

The best way to figure out where to place your garden is to keep track of where the light falls in your yard throughout the day. Especially if you have a tree or two, this step is vital.

During one of your days off, check up on your yard every hour or so and take note of where the shadows are being cast, along with where the light is shining through. After observing for a day or two, you’ll know where to place your garden.

Sow your seeds correctly

It’s important to start your garden off on the right foot.

Poblano pepper seeds should be planted ¼ inch deep. Keep the soil moist until they germinate, which should take about a week or two. Sow your seeds 18 inches apart, with three feet in between rows.

This spacing may seem extreme, but under the right conditions, poblano pepper plants can reach up to 4-5 feet in height with a wide width and extensive root system.

Consider creating a barrier around your garden

If you’re really struggling with pests, it might be time to invest in a fence.

If your main pests are squirrels, raccoons, or deer – basically, anything stealing your peppers – then a fence will help protect your garden.

If your main troubles are with squirrels and deer stealing your peppers, a fence will help keep them away – so you can have a feast instead of the deer!