Growing chillies

In order to eat chillies, you need to have them. So why not grow your own?

Here at the Birdhouse, we put as much love into growing the chilli plants as we do into using their fruits to make delicious eats.

Growing chillies is a fun and rewarding experience. If you fancy giving it a try then read the articles below for some free Birdhouse advice:

  • The Pros and Cons of Where to Grow Chillies in the UK
    We have tried it everywhere: chillies indoors… chillies outdoors… chillies in pots… in the ground… even a hanging basket. In the kids’ flower patch… on their bedroom windowsills… in a milk bottle… greenhouse… polytunnel… grow room. You name it, we’ve tried it…well, not on a spaceship but we hear chillies do very well up there! … Continue reading The Pros and Cons of Where to Grow Chillies in the UK
  • Results of topping chilli plants
    It was March 28th when the Big Snip occurred. The tops of the seedlings were unceremoniously chopped off and they have been nursing their wounds ever since. All in the hope that new side shoots would appear and make bushier, sturdier and more productive plants. That was two weeks ago…what do the plants look like … Continue reading Results of topping chilli plants
  • Guide to Topping Chilli Plants
    Do you want bushy chilli plants? Strong & sturdy, multi stemmed, eventually laden with fruit? Well of course you do! But maybe your plant are not quite there yet. If not, then look no further than The Birdhouse Miracle Cure! How do we achieve the ideal chilli plant? Some plants are just born this way … Continue reading Guide to Topping Chilli Plants
  • How and when to pot on chilli seedlings
    Here we go again. The seeds have germinated, true leaves are growing. All seems well. And then, suddenly it dawned on us that these precious babies might need a bit more than a teeny tiny pot and seed compost. What next? Have a look A seedling that is ready to pot on for the first … Continue reading How and when to pot on chilli seedlings
  • Keeping chilli seedlings under a grow light
    We’ve got a light! Just one mind you… but it may multiply. Let’s see if it makes a difference to last year’s au naturel efforts. We have the Phlizon 1200W LED Full Spectrum grow light. Father Christmas did a lot of research and selected this magnificent glowing product. Good work Saint Nick! Phlizon 1200W is … Continue reading Keeping chilli seedlings under a grow light
  • Potting on chitted chilli seeds
    Having soaked our chilli seeds in tea; chitted them on warm, damp kitchen paper until they germinated; and sung sweetly to them… it is now time to plant them in some actual soil and let them do their thing. The beginning of the new year is a cold, dark and lonely time for a seedling … Continue reading Potting on chitted chilli seeds
  • Early Summer chilli plant progress report
    Having sown most seeds in January it is just lovely to watch the plants flourish and fruit. We pickled our first jar of jalapeños last night and they are nearly finished already. That’s how it should be. Everything is looking pretty fresh and green, despite recent erratic weather patterns. Lots of flowers on display and … Continue reading Early Summer chilli plant progress report
  • NPK values for chilli plants
    We humans are fussy eaters. Chillies are not. Chillies will take whatever meal you throw at them and, feast-or-famine, they will still grow, flower and fruit. Mostly. However, the subtle science of feeding chilli plants well is a true art form that takes many a Summer to perfect. The variations of an ever-changing, seasonal menu … Continue reading NPK values for chilli plants
  • Time to shed some light on the chillies
    It’s that time of year where the sun is lovely & warm and the nights are not too chilly. We’re racing towards longest day: action stations everyone. The Birdhouse greenhouse is brimming with leafy specimen. No longer a cocooned sanctuary from the Night King but a claustrophobic bubble isolating the chilli babies from the real … Continue reading Time to shed some light on the chillies
  • Begone Fiendish Frosts
    UK frosts are a damnable thing…dominating our lives for weeks on end, with never the same frost twice. Omnipresent during the darker months. No way a chilli plant is growing out there…not a snowball’s chance in Hell. In early Spring, just when the birds are a-nesting, Jack Frost STILL manages to sneak up on you … Continue reading Begone Fiendish Frosts
  • Topping for a second time
    We’ve learned a lot from the first topping… Different varieties of chilli like topping in different degrees. Some just don’t seem to understand what to do and others get it right first time. A good example of a slow learner is Poblano. At the initial topping, Poblano was topped carefully to leave four true leaves. … Continue reading Topping for a second time
  • Pinching out, plants, progress and potting on.
    The last few weeks have been busy. Spring has finally sprung in Hampshire. The garden is waking up and our Family and other Animals are demanding attention. The chillies have been quietly doing their thing on the window sill. After a sunshine-tastic Easter Bank Holiday it is time for a progress report. Potting on… Roots … Continue reading Pinching out, plants, progress and potting on.
  • How and when to top your chilli plants?
    Our chilli plants are progressing nicely. Lighting has been au natural so they are not the deep, dark, dense green & glossy beasts that some people have lurking beneath their grow lights. Maybe Father Christmas will bring us lights this year, who knows. Until such time, we have our lovely honest plants that have germinated … Continue reading How and when to top your chilli plants?
  • Why are the chilli plants a bit pale?
    A south facing windowsill in March is no longer enough for the chillies in our lives. The leaves are a little limey in colour (especially the chinense types) and some of the plants just a bit leggy (especially the jalapeño and poblano). Without rushing for LED lighting and pinching out the tops just yet what … Continue reading Why are the chilli plants a bit pale?
  • True leaves
    Time for an update on the 20 varieties of chilli we have growing here at The Birdhouse in sunny and blustery Hampshire, England. A quick reminder of the seedlings’ journey so far… The seeds were soaked in tea and left to chit in a humid propagator. Once the seeds had rooted & shooted they were … Continue reading True leaves
  • Potting on the seedlings
    A lot has happened since things kicked off this year. Our seeds were hot housed in the steamy propagator in the hope that germination would be quicker, more consistent and we would be a bit more successful with the chinense types. And things have indeed gone well. Hundreds of seeds germinated, hundreds of paper pots … Continue reading Potting on the seedlings
  • Capsicum pubescens
    Capsicum pubescens is a late entry to the heated propagator. Whilst using the last of our homegrown Rocoto chillies it was impossible to just throw the seeds away. So, they were introduced to the chitting pod. Having sworn we would get going earlier with the seeds this year, to allow the longest growing period possible, … Continue reading Capsicum pubescens
  • The quest to find the best soil
    Just which compost to choose for our precious chillies? The options are a little overwhelming but let’s dig down to what we know about chilli plants to see if we can come up with our perfect potting medium. Cultural roots Considering the geographical heritage of our chilli plants should hopefully give some guidance to the … Continue reading The quest to find the best soil
  • Feeding time at the zoo
    It’s time to give these little chilli seedlings a bit of what they fancy. They have been potted on into seed compost and are settling in admirably. The seed leaves are opening, they are a good green colour and generally they look healthy. The seed compost has no nutrients in it though. In the future … Continue reading Feeding time at the zoo