Fajita Bell

  • Sun: Full sun
  • Harvest Size: 4 inches long, 3.5 inches wide
  • Days to Harvest: 77 to 80
  • Plant size: 24 to 36 inches tall, 18 inches wide
  • Scoville heat units: 100 to 1000 (mild)

Savor some spice with a bell pepper that offers a little heat. Fajita Bell is mild like Cajun Belle and Mexibell, adding a tasty zip to dishes. Grow blocky, thick-walled peppers to add a zesty crunch to mealtime menus. Fruits shift from green to red as they mature.

Plant in spring to early summer starting anytime about two weeks after the last spring frost. If you like to plant a little early to start harvesting earlier, be prepared to protect plants from possible frost and keep them a little warmer with a row cover. Plants are productive through summer heat and humidity.

Plant spacing: 18 inches apart in rows 30 inches apart; 12 to 18 inches in intensive gardens. One plant per 18-inch container. Plants per person: 2 for fresh use; 4 to 6 for freezing or canning.

Secrets to Success »

Water regularly. Peppers need plenty of water to reach full size. Fruit from drought-stressed plants is hotter, too. To help soil retain moisture, mix compost into planting holes, and mulch soil around plants. Stake plants as fruits start to form, tying pepper-laden branches to stakes. You can also use small tomato cages to support the branches.

Harvest and Use »

Snip stems of individual peppers using a sharp knife or clippers, leaving a small portion of stem attached. Rinse and dry peppers; store in the refrigerator. The more peppers you pick, the more you’ll get. Pick at any stage—from green to red.

Peppers are packed with Vitamins A and C—twice the vitamin C of an orange. Use Fajita Bell peppers chopped fresh into salsa or sliced onto pizza or fresh vegetable trays. These fruits make wonderful stuffed peppers and also are favorites for stir-fry and fajitas.

Capsaicin, the compound that produces the heat in a hot pepper, is concentrated in the veins, ribs, and seeds. Personal sensitivity to it varies so use caution until you know how you’ll react. If pepper juice gets in your eye or nose, flush immediately with cold water. When the fire is in your mouth, grab ice cream, milk, or yogurt to counteract the burn. Wash towels that may have capsaicin on them to avoid spreading it.

Try These Garden Companions »

  • Sweet onion, Thai basil, squash, and cherry tomatoes for stir-fry.
  • Different types of peppers to taste the flavors and types available: sweet, hot, mildly hot, pickling, and stuffing types.
  • Cilantro, tomatoes, and onions—all the ingredients you need for creating garden fresh salsa.
  • Low growing flowers such as petunias and marigolds—colorful-fruited peppers look great tucked into flower beds.

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