In-row Plant Spacing Affects Growth and Yield of Pepperoncini Pepper

in HortScience
Carl E. MotsenbockerDepartment of Horticulture, Louisiana State University Agricultural Center, Baton Rouge, LA 70803

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Pepperoncini pepper (Capsicum annuum var. annuum L. `Golden Greek') was grown at in-row spacings of 7.5, 15, 22.5, 30, and 45 cm to determine the effect of plant population on growth and fruit yield in a 2-year field study. In 1992, pepper plants grown at the 15-cm in-row spacing had the lowest plant, stem, and leaf dry weights, while plants at the lowest density (45-cm spacing) had the highest plant, leaf, and stem dry weights and the largest leaf area (LA). Of plants grown at the 7.5-cm spacing, the total yield and fruit count per hectare were higher than at the other spacings; however, fruit yield per plant was lowest. In 1993, the lowest plant and leaf dry weights and LA and highest LA index (LAI) were from plants at the 7.5-cm in-row spacing. Plants at the 45-cm spacing had the highest plant and leaf dry weight and LA and the lowest LAI. Pepper plants grown at the narrowest spacing produced the lowest early and total fruit yield per plant but the most fruit per hectare. In general, plants grown at the narrowest spacings produced the smallest plant, leaf, and stem biomass but resulted in the highest fruit yields and counts per hectare and the lowest fruit yields per plant.

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