If you’ve been growing your poblano peppers from seed indoors, you’re probably itching to get them outside! You don’t want to rush it because transplanting at the wrong time can ruin a whole crop! How do you know the best temperature to transplant your peppers?
The best temperature for transplanting poblano pepper seedlings is when nighttime lows regularly reach above 50°F. Nighttime temperatures above 70°F and daytime temperatures above 90°F can weaken young transplants. Transplant your poblano peppers in the late afternoon or on a cloudy day to reduce the chances of transplant shock.
Read on to learn about when to transplant your poblano peppers!
The best temperature for transplanting poblano pepper seedlings
Temperature plays a huge role in gardening. And transplanting is no exception!
The best temperature for transplanting poblano peppers is when nighttime lows reach above 50°F. Night temps above 70° and daytime temps above 90° can weaken young transplants. Transplant your poblano peppers in the late afternoon or on a cloudy day.
Transplant your poblano pepper seedlings after nighttime lows reach above 50°F. Nighttime temperatures above 70° and daytime above 90° can weaken young transplants.
Here’s a list of when night temperatures will reach above 50° per hardiness zone:
- Zone 4 – June
- Zone 5 – June
- Zone 6 – June
- Zone 7 – May
- Zone 8 – May
- Zone 9 – March
Transplant your poblano peppers in the late afternoon or on a cloudy day.
Sow seeds indoors 8-10 weeks before you plant to transplant your peppers. It’s a good idea to harden your poblano peppers before transplanting them for a couple of days at 60°F and with reduced water. This will mitigate transplant shock.
How do you transplant poblano peppers?
Knowing the right temperature doesn’t do much good if you don’t know how to transplant your poblanos!
Here are some guidelines for transplanting poblano peppers:
- Wait for your poblano peppers to develop three sets of true leaves
- Gently remove your poblano peppers from their germination tray
- Plant your poblano peppers in pots, in the ground, or in raised beds
- Fertilize at ½ strength and water thoroughly
- Plus some bonus tips!
Let’s dive into these steps.
Wait for your poblano peppers to develop three sets of true leaves
What are true leaves, and why are they important?
To transplant poblano peppers, wait for your poblano peppers to develop three sets of true leaves. True leaves are the first leaves that mimic what grown-up leaves look like. Allowing for three sets of true leaves to grow before transplanting is a good rule of thumb because it means your peppers will be adequately strong and ready.
True leaves are the leaves that grow after the first set that your seedlings develop, and look like miniature versions of a grown-up plant’s leaves.
While this isn’t a hard and fast rule, allowing your peppers to develop three sets of true leaves should ensure that they’re grown enough to handle transplanting.
Gently remove your poblano peppers from their germination trays
Removing your poblano peppers from their germination trays is a very delicate step- and it’s important to treat it as such!
To transplant poblano peppers, gently remove them from their germination trays. It’s important not to damage your poblano pepper plant’s roots during this process, so you need to be careful.
This part can be tricky. The best way to get a seedling out of its tray is to gently press on the outer edges of the tray to loosen the soil and roots.
The roots should be well-developed. Hopefully, your peppers aren’t rootbound at this point, but it’s okay if they are.
Plant your poblano peppers in pots, in the ground, or in raised beds
Now onto planting!
To transplant poblano peppers, plant them in pots, in the ground, or in raised beds. Pots are convenient if you’re low on space. Planting in the ground provides the most room. Planting in raised beds is a good option if you have room in your yard but it’s filled with low-quality soil or cement, or if you don’t want to or can’t bend down.
Gently shake your young plants so that soil falls off the roots and the roots become loose.
If you’re planting in a pot, fill it up with soil. Then dig out enough room to plant your seedling. Gently place your seedling in the hole and surround it with soil.
If you’re planting in the ground or in raised beds, turn the soil over so it’s nice and loose. Again, dig out enough room to plant your seedling. Gently place it in the hole and surround it with soil.
Space your poblano peppers out 18 inches apart with three feet between rows. That may seem like a lot, but just wait until your poblanos reach four feet tall and you’ll be glad you left the room!
Fertilize at ½ strength and water thoroughly
How do you go about fertilizing your newly-transplanted poblanos?
To transplant poblano peppers, fertilize at ½ strength and water thoroughly. Fertilizing young plants at full strength can lead to nutrient burn. Water thoroughly and keep the soil moist but not wet.
Fertilize your poblano peppers at ½ strength to avoid nutrient burn. This will give your poblanos a little boost without overwhelming them.
Water thoroughly, moistening the soil without making it wet. Keep the soil moist for quite some time.
We wouldn’t send you on your merry way without a couple of bonus tips to have up your sleeve!
Here are some bonus tips to help you with your transplanting:
- Don’t worry if your peppers look upset at first. They’re just adjusting to their new environment.
- Harden your poblano peppers before transplanting (as discussed previously).
- You can transplant into small pots at first to conserve water, and then transplant again once your poblanos grow larger.
- If you accidentally overfertilize and your pepper leaves begin to curl, leach the fertilizer out by watering very thoroughly multiple times.