10 Best Peppers to Grow in Tennessee

Jun 05, 2023

Peppers are heat-loving vegetables that make a great, low-maintenance addition to any garden. With so many varieties to choose from, how do you know which ones are best?
To help you narrow down your options, we’ve compiled a list of 10 of the best types of peppers to grow in the state of Tennessee:
  1. Bell Peppers — Bell peppers are one of the tastiest and easiest types of peppers to grow. They thrive in the heat, so hot and humid Tennessee summers are not an issue. Bell peppers are very hardy and adaptive, making them perfect for beginner gardeners, and they can even be grown in gardening pots for those who do not have a designated garden space. They typically mature within 70 days.
  1. Jalapeno Peppers — Jalapeno peppers are one of the fastest-growing peppers you can have in your garden. Once they bloom, you can expect an extraordinary number of peppers on your plant. They also grow great among other vegetables and plants, making them a popular choice for raised garden beds and gardening pots. Jalapeno peppers mature within 80 days.
  1. Habanero Peppers — Habanero peppers are a low-maintenance vegetable that continue to get bigger and hotter the longer they are exposed to the summer heat. For gardeners who have little space, habanero peppers can be trained to grow vertically, and they also thrive in containers, window boxes, raised garden beds, and even in poor soil. They take about 80 days to mature.
  1. Italian Peppers — Italian peppers are one of the best peppers for cooking. They can be fried, stuffed, made into salsa, or eaten raw. They are one of the few types of peppers that can be harvested from as early as June to as late as November, so you will be able to enjoy them nearly all year long. Italian peppers take approximately 85 days to mature.
  1. Banana Peppers — Banana peppers produce some of the highest yields of all peppers and can be harvested throughout the fall until the first frost. They are incredibly resistant to diseases and insects, so they are a great choice for beginner gardeners. They are also considered compact plants, making them ideal for small spaces. Banana peppers typically mature within 70 days.
  1. Anaheim Peppers — Anaheim peppers are one of the most popular in Tennessee and are often served in Mexican dishes, used in salsa, stuffed, or fried. They are especially good for gardens that have problems with diseases, as they are immune to root rot and most garden insects. Anaheim peppers grow well indoors for those living the urban lifestyle. They take about 80 days to mature.
  1. Cayenne Peppers — Cayenne peppers grow similarly to habaneros. They thrive in the summer heat but will not tolerate the cold or a late frost. They will never lose their flaming red color and flavor and are often a go-to spice in many dishes. They do not have to be grown in the ground, but also thrive in containers, window boxes, and raised garden beds. Cayenne peppers have a slightly longer maturity date at 90 days.
  1. Bulgarian Peppers — Bulgarian peppers are a great choice when unusually dry summers are expected. They do not require a lot of water to grow, flower, and bloom, and they can be harvested more than once during the growing season. This type of pepper was created specifically for vertical gardening, therefore saving space by growing upwards rather than wide. Bulgarian peppers typically mature within 80 days.
  1. Poblano Peppers — Poblano peppers are large, mild green chili peppers used in many Mexican dishes. They are considered heirloom peppers, meaning they carry the best characteristics of peppers and have been grown for decades. Poblano peppers are hardy, tasty, and easy to grow, making them a popular choice for Tennessee gardens. They mature quite quickly at 65 days.
  1. Shishito Peppers — Shishito peppers are growing in popularity because of how healthy they are and can often be found in restaurants and at farmers markets. They are perfect for adding to salads, eating as an appetizer, or cooking into a sauce. Shishito peppers are easy to grow, early to mature, and yield a heavy crop, making them a great addition to your garden. They only take roughly 60 days to mature.
As you add to your garden this summer, visit your local Co-op for all your gardening essentials! Find the nearest location here.
For more content like this, check out the latest issue of The Cooperator.

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