Why Won’t My Peppers Turn Red (5 Reasons Explained)

When you have planted your peppers in the spring and they haven’t quite turned red, as a grower surely this is a matter of great concern.

Because when it comes to market demand and price red bell peppers are always higher than green ones. 

Sadly, it’s a frequent thing for the peppers as the slightest changes in climate and temperature can stop them from turning red and if you are facing this problem, trust me you are not alone.

The 5 most prominent reasons for the hot peppers not turning red are–

  • Sometimes they can take longer to turn red than usual.
  • The green cultivars of peppers will never turn red.
  • The wrong temperature.
  • Frequent pest attacks.
  • The wrong watering schedule.

In this article, I am going to discuss these reasons with detailed explanations and their control measures. But before getting into the article let’s see the problems and their solutions at a glance:

The peppers haven’t ripened yetWait 2-3 more weeks from the maturation day mentioned in the seed package.
The Peppers are not the red varietyBefore planting, make sure the variety turns red.
The temperature is not correctRegulate the temperature from 70-80 ° Fahrenheit ( 21-31 °C).
Pest attackKill the aphids with a good insecticide.
Wrong watering Water about 2 inches every week.

5 Reasons for the Peppers Not Turning Red

1. They Aren’t Fully Ripe Yet

Bell peppers take time to mature and most of the time it does not match with the package instructions. So, if the pack says the peppers will mature after 6 weeks, it’s not always correct. 

Actually, the package instructions usually mean the time when the bell peppers are mature enough to be eaten. So you have to be a little patient and wait for some time to let the chili peppers turn red.

Control Measure:

If you want the peppers to turn red then having patience is the only thing you can do. Bell peppers will take a long time to fully ripen and turn red completely.

The range is about another 2- 3 weeks or even longer from the package instructed date. Meanwhile, the bell peppers will gradually turn yellow first and then finally turn red.

However, if you want to encourage the bell peppers to turn red then shift them to a warm and sunny place where the temperature is about 70° Fahrenheit ( 21°C).

Also, make sure you expose them to sunlight for at least 6 hours every day.

Also, smaller-sized peppers turn red faster than the larger ones so before planting try to choose seedlings that have  2-5 inches in diameter.

And to make sure your peppers are mature enough to harvest, look for white thin stripes on them because this indicates they are ready to be picked and are full of flavors.

2. The Peppers Are Not the Red Variety

This is a very sad situation because a grower waits very patiently for the peppers to turn red. But if the bell peppers are of the natural green variety, they will never turn red even after being fully ripe.

However, all the bell pepper varieties start with green color but some of the varieties like “Autry” never turn red or yellow.

Control Measure:

This issue is beyond any fix once you have planted the green capsicums but you can salvage the green ones for now as they are totally fine for consumption after maturing for a certain period of time. 

But keep the variety in mind when replanting and make sure you choose the one that turns red for the next time.

Look for the seed packages that say  “Bell Boy,” “Lipstick,” “Gypsy” or “Lady Bell” because these varieties will surely turn red. 

Sometimes the ripening stage of the peppers can also be different depending on their variety. So, before worrying about them you have to get information about their maturation period.

3. The Temperature Is Wrong

Bell peppers are very picky when it comes to the temperature they are grown in. When the temperature is well within their preferred range the peppers will ripen into vivid red color.

So you have to make sure the temperature is warm but not too hot. They usually prefer moderate temperatures for their perfect growth and development. 

If the temperature is very cold then the peppers will mature very late and will not produce a vibrant red color at all even after maturing.

Control Measure:

To get the peppers to turn red you have to make sure the plant grows in the range of  70-80 ° Fahrenheit ( 21-31 °C).

Also, you have to make sure that the temperature doesn’t fall below 55° Fahrenheit as it can cause damaging effects to bell pepper production like yellowing of leaves and dropping of flowers. 

So, if you are growing them indoors then you have to maintain this temperature range. But if you wish to grow them outside then the best option for you is to plant them 15-16 weeks before the frost is expected to occur.

Again if the temperature gets higher than 90° Fahrenheit then the things mentioned above will happen as well. In this case, you can shift them to indoor conditions and regulate the mentioned temperature.

4. Pest Problems

Some pest infestations can delay or even entirely stop the ripening of your bell peppers.

Aphids can suck sap from the leaves and fruits and cause irregular yellow spots on the leaves and even the peppers can have small and black sunken spots. 

Eventually, the aphids affect the maturity of the capsicums and keep them from turning red.

Moreover, the peppers will be discolored and misshapen in case of a severe attack. The worst thing is, if the aphids are left untreated they can even silently kill the pepper plants.

Control Measure:

If you notice aphids, especially on the underside of the leaves then you have to use a good and safe insecticide.

Emphasizing on safe formulation is important because we eat the peppers raw mostly in salads.

So it’s really important for the insecticide to kill insects but also not to leave any residual effects on the peppers.

You can also use mild soapy water and insecticidal soap on your pepper plants on a regular basis to prevent the attack of aphids.

Just make sure you spray thoroughly on both sides of the leaves. Besides, you can use a hose pipe and water thoroughly so these small insects will get off the leaves.

Moreover, some beneficial insects like ladybugs, wasps, lace wigs, etc will help you keep them under control naturally. 

Try out this homemade insecticide recipe for controlling aphids–

Recipe 1: Garlic-Onion-Pepper Aphid insecticide Recipe


  • A small bulb of garlic 
  • A small or medium-sized onion
  • ⅓  rd  tablespoon of dry pepper
  • A tablespoon of liquid dish soap


  • Blend the garlic and onion in an electric blender and turn it into a thick paste
  • After that add the pepper and mix blend again
  • Lastly, add the mild dish soap in the paste and mix it nicely
  • Then keep it aside for a few hours or let it sit overnight 
  • Now strain the mixture with a fine cheesecloth
  • Then add 3 liters of water and store it in a bottle
  • Before spraying pour some amount into the sprayer
  • Spray on both sides of your pepper plant every week.
  • Make sure to handle the mixture carefully as the pepper can cause irritation to the skin. Also, keep it at a safe distance from the eyes.

Note: Before spraying, test the homemade insecticide on a small leaf and wait for an hour to see the effects. If the leaf seems burned or distorted then dilute the liquid by adding some more water. Then again try on another leaf. Once the leaf seems to take it well you can spray it on your whole plant.

5. Incorrect Watering Schedule

Your peppers can have black spots and totally stay green even after being a red variety if it’s not watered properly.

Both overwatering and underwatering are harmful for the plant and also it can affect the numbers and size of the peppers to a great extent.

Sometimes drought conditions and high heat spells are also responsible for causing these symptoms.

Control Measure:

To avoid this issue you have to maintain a regular watering schedule to make sure the plants get enough supply of water especially when the plant is in the reproductive stage. 

Bell peppers need deep watering every week which is about 2 inches. If the soil is left dry for a long period then the peppers will taste very bitter and will show a discolored appearance.

However, make sure you don’t go overboard with watering as it can cause suffocation of the roots and result in blossom end rot that will result in rotten peppers that are unfit for consumption.

This is why you have to monitor the soil condition regularly and if the soil seems too dry then water moderately.

If the peppers seem rotten, you have to destroy them before they infect others. And then you have to pick an effective fungicide with keeping the food safety issues in mind.

Make sure you spray the fungicide thoroughly all over the plant. 

To conserve soil moisture you can use mulches and grass clipping around your bell peppers. During the colder seasons, black mulches will help a lot by warming the soil also.

Again if you are growing the pepper indoors, make sure the pot has drainage holes big enough to drain out the excess water quickly. 

How to Encourage the Peppers to Turn Red?

A good trick is to let some of the peppers focus on ripening.

Because if a plant has too many green peppers then it cannot distribute the same kind of energy to ripen all of them equally. As a result, all the peppers will get a faded red color rather than bright red. 

This is why it’s better to salvage some of the green peppers in their green stage. This will let the pepper plant spread more energy on the remaining peppers.

Also, in this case, the peppers will turn red faster and brighter. In addition, they will also attain a good size.

While planting the peppers make sure you keep enough space between each plant so that the fruits can get enough sunlight and air. This will also help to prevent many fungal diseases.


Do Green Peppers Turn Red on the Vine?

Peppers only change color when they are attached to the vine. So, if you pick up the peppers while they are green then they are highly unlikely to turn yellow or red. That means if you want red peppers, you have to wait for them to turn red in the plant before you harvest them.

Why Are My Bell Peppers So Small?

Sometimes the varieties can be the reason for their small sizes. Aside from that if the peppers don’t get proper care, necessary fertilizers, and timely application of watering then their size will be naturally small. Even climatic conditions can play a big role in this.


The road to having yummy red peppers can be tricky as you have already read in the article about all the things you have to consider.

As a beginner, it can be a little challenging but when you harvest the beautiful red peppers you will see that it is worth all the patience and hard work.

Follow the correct watering schedule and keep the pests at bay, and as long as the temperature is under their preferred range you are all set to get some juicy red bell peppers.

I hope this article answered all your questions about why won’t my peppers turn red and cleared all previous confusion if had any.

For any further queries do ask in the comment sections below and we will be happy to help you out with the relevant information.

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