[Market-farming] Sweet Peppers Turning to Slime

road's end farm organic101 at linkny.com
Thu Aug 30 14:25:58 EDT 2007

On Aug 30, 2007, at 10:38 AM, SHEILA PAYNE wrote:

> I'm in Colorado.  I have some lovely pepper plants with lovely 
> immature peppers on them.  Two varieties-- red and orange bells.  The 
> peppers lower on the plant that are getting red and orange are 
> a disgusting brownish, slimy mess.  The stem is strong and still 
> attached to the plant, so when I try to pull them off -- ugh, a 
> handful of mush slides off the stem/seeds into my hand.  No indication 
> of disease on the plants or immature fruits.

Cut them out of there, using shears or heavy scissors to cut the stem, 
and discard them away from the plants. If you leave them, or bits of 
them, they're likely to infect the others.

Did they get sunscald, or blossom end rot? Has the weather been 
unreasonably dry or wet? Bacterial rots can get into any injury or 
other problem in peppers, as a secondary infection, and give the 
results you're describing. Some varieties are much more resistant than 
others. I don't know which varieties would do well in Colorado.

Try to find some fruit showing beginning stages of the problem and take 
it to your extension agent; or the agent might be willing to come and 
look at the plants. If you can identify the original problem, it'll be 
easier to figure out what to do about it. The brown mush may be too far 
gone to identify anything specific in it, but if that's all you have, 
you could try it.

-- Rivka; Finger Lakes NY, Zone 5 mostly
Fresh-market organic produce, small scale
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