Should I top off my pepper plants to get a higher yield? #333053 - Ask Extension


Should I top off my pepper plants to get a higher yield? #333053

Asked June 16, 2016, 3:08 PM EDT

I have seen several videos on the Internet suggesting that I cut the tops off of my pepper plants to get a higher yield. Will this method work in Minnesota? With our shorter growing season, does it make sense to do that? If so, how much off the top should I cut? Also, if there are some flowers at the top, is it OK to cut those off? Thank you very much for your help.

Dakota County Minnesota

Expert Response

I have never heard of anyone - at least in Minnesota - topping peppers. Our growing season is shorter than in other parts of the country and topping them could compromise yield. I could see removing some smaller flowers to increase size of remaining peppers, but the plant will likely drop flowers on its own that it cannot support.

Here is our Extension publication on growing peppers as well as tomatoes an eggplants. There is no mention of topping.

Julie Weisenhorn Replied June 16, 2016, 4:55 PM EDT
Thank you Julie! I will just let them be. Yes, I'm sure geographical location and duration of growing makes a huge difference in how to tend them.
The Question Asker Replied June 16, 2016, 6:43 PM EDT

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