If you want to grow peppers & tomatoes indoors then 3 elements will be very important.
- The right type & amount of nutrients (including water),
- The right amount of light & heat
- Support to help them grow.
The advantage is that you will be able to grow fresh tomatoes & peppers all year, irrespective of the amount of sunlight or temperatures outside.
Taking the key elements in turn:
Element 1 – focus on nutrients & water
Many commercial growers use hydroponic systems to grow tomatoes and peppers indoors (usually in greenhouses)
The reason is that
- Hydroponically or aquaponically grown tomatoes & peppers will grow faster with better yields. Compared to those grown in soil.
- It is easier to control key items like nutrients & ph levels.
- And of course it’s easier to water them.
If you want to grow tomatoes & peppers indoors then it’s well worth having a look at something like the hydroponic unit on the right.
It takes up very little space and is very easy to operate.
Element 2 – provide the right light & temperature
Plants like tomatoes & peppers like lots of sunshine & warmth.
The advantage of using a specialised grow light (like the one on the right) is you will be able to provide exactly the right type of light for your plants.
Most houses (kitchen, etc) tend to be warm which will be great for your plants.
But (especially when growing them in Autumn or Winter) you will need to provide the right type of extra light.
The advantage is that the best grow lights can be programmed so that they automatically switch on for optimum number of hours.
Element 3 – support to help them grow
The final element is to provide support for your plants as they grow.
This can sometimes be a challenge indoors – outside (when growing in soil) you can often simply use a bamboo rod in the ground.
But indoors – especially when using hydroponics or aquaponics – that is not as easy.
In addition it helps to use a support system that you can grow, as the plants get bigger and need some support.
The only one we’ve found that seems to fit the bill, is the one on the right.
Which tomatoes & peppers to grow, and why
If you use the above system then you will have no problem growing whatever tomatoes or peppers you prefer.
But what you grow depends on your own tastest and preferred cuisine.
For example do you cook Italian, Mexican or Japanese meals, etc. Similarly do you prefer hot & spicy meals or just a bit of added flavour?
A key element will be both the height of the plants, as well as how long they take from seed to harvest.
Hopefully the information below will help you select what to grow (or combine)
Please note – this is based on our experience and your results might be slightly different.
- Sweet Peppers
- Banana Pepper – max height 60 cm ; days to harvest 80
- Pimento – max height 60 cm ; days to harvest 90
- Bell – max height 90 cm ; days to harvest 90
- Shishito – max height 100 cm ; days to havest 55
- Hot Peppers
- Anaheim – max height 60 cm ; days to harvest 90
- Hungarian – max height 100 cm ; days to harvest 90
- Peperonici – max height 75 cm ; days to harvest 65
- Poblano – max height 65 cm ; days to harvest 200
- Fiery Peppers
- Birdseye – max height 70 cm ; days to harvest 150
- Cayenne – max height 60 cm ; days to harvest 70
- Habanero – max height 150 cm ; days to harvest 90
- Jalapeno – max height 90 cm ; days to harvest 75
- Scotch bonnet – max height 150 cm ; days to harvest 130
- Thai – max height 70 cm ; days to harvest 150
- Gourmet Tomatoes
- Roma – max height 150 cm ; days to harvest 80
- San Marzano – max height 150 cm ; days to harvest 80
- Tomatillo – max height 90 cm ; days to harvest 75
For a more detailed explanation of the different types have a look at our fruit & vegetable section
How to start growing peppers & tomatoes indoors
Easiest option is to have a look at the units below and have fun starting to grow your own and experimenting with ideas