What Do I Use to Cover My Sweet Bell Pepper to Stop Sun Scald?


Capsicum annuum, more commonly known as bell peppers, may be grown as annuals in any of the plant hardiness zones 1 through 11 designated by the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA), although they can also be grown as perennials in USDA zones 9 through 11. Although these plants develop best in warm climes, peppers do not fare well when exposed to the intense heat of direct sunshine. The skin of bell peppers is susceptible to scalding in the same way as human skin is when exposed to the sun for an extended period of time without protection. Once the skin of the peppers has been scalded, the peppers may go on to rot entirely while still on the plant. The best way to cure this illness is to avoid getting it in the first place.


The installation of shade cloth is the most effective method for preventing sunscald on peppers. This method filters out precisely the right amount of sunlight to protect the plants from sunburn while still enabling photosynthesis to take place.

About Sunscald Damage

The damage that peppers sustain from an excessive amount of sun is clearly distinguishable from the damage that is caused by illnesses or disorders such as blossom end rot, which causes dark-colored lesions on the fruit. According to the Missouri Botanical Garden, sunscald causes vast sections of the peppers to become a light colour wherever the fruit was allowed to be exposed to the sun.

Sunscald is most often observed on pepper plants that have not been adequately watered or fertilised, which causes the plant to produce less leaves overall. As a consequence, the peppers on the plant have less protection from the sun. Maintaining proper growth methods that increase the general health of the sweet bell peppers is the best approach to avoid sunscald. This will allow the plants to produce enough huge leaves to function as a natural canopy over the growing bell peppers. This will protect the sweet bell peppers from sunscald.

Using Shade Cloth

When you have a tiny garden, one of the most effective methods to protect your bell peppers from sunscald is to drape a shade cloth over them. Shade cloths let in just enough light for photosynthesis to take place while blocking off just enough sunshine to protect the plants from being sunburned.

According to the Utah State University Extension, shading peppers may actually boost their production. The extension service suggests using a shade cloth that has a light reduction capability of between 20 and 40 percent. A study that was conducted at the campus of the University of Georgia in Tifton, Georgia, found that pepper plants that were covered by shade cloth had only a 10% loss of peppers due to diseases or other problems, whereas pepper plants that were not covered by shade cloth had a loss of up to 50% of their peppers due to pepper growing issues. According to the findings of the American Society for Horticulture Science, the plants that had shade cloth placed over them had much less stress as a result of being shielded from the intense heat of the summer sun.

Protecting Peppers Through Staking

You also have the option of staking your pepper plants and covering the bell peppers with the leaves of the plants once you have staked them. This ensures that the plants grow straight and avoids leaning, which might place the peppers at an angle where they are exposed to sunlight, which could result in sun scald. This ensures that the plants grow upright and prevents tilting. To prevent pepper plants from being blown over by the wind and exposing the peppers to sun scald, secure them to stakes of the same height as the plants with a single knot. The stakes should be at the same height as the plants.

Growing Healthy Bell Peppers

It is essential that you pay careful attention to both the watering and fertiliser of your pepper plants in order to guarantee that they generate sufficient foliage to cover the developing peppers. When planting each bell pepper in a sunny site with soil that has a pH between 6.2 and 7.0, pour between 3 and 5 inches of compost into the hole that you dug for the transplant. At four and eight weeks after planting, throughout the growth season, sprinkle 1/4 spoonful of 21-0-0 fertiliser 6 inches away from each plant and soak it into the soil. The frequency of watering should never exceed what is necessary to keep an inch of soil moisture below the surface at a constant level. The frequency varies depending on the kind of soil, the weather, and the outside temperatures.