After months of hard work, it can be frustrating to dispose of plants in your vegetable garden when winter approaches. Thanks to a popular TikTok video, you may not have to say goodbye to your beloved pepper plants every year.
Lydia (@stoneyspoonie) shared a viral TikTok clearing up a common misconception: Pepper plants are perennial — meaning they can grow back every spring — and not annual plants as many home growers believe.
With the right techniques, your plants can survive the winter and produce new fruit come spring.
Lydia explains a common gardening technique that helps perennial plants survive colder temperatures. Also referred to as overwintering, there are a few methods gardeners can employ to protect plants during the winter.
Lydia highlights an overwintering method that works best in warmer climates, like her home in Florida. As temperatures drop, she prunes the main stem of her potted pepper plant down to just a few inches tall.
She leaves it outside during the colder months, but once the weather gets warmer, she resumes watering the plan, and new stems grow.
“Now we’re ready to get some fruit again,” Lydia said, showing off two new stems.
@stoneyspoonie Peppers are my favorite to grow #hardyplants #pepperplants #greenpeppers #growyourownfood #homesteading #porchgarden #perennials #perennialplants #veggiegarden #gardentips #smallspacegarden #patiogardener ♬ original sound – Lydia
This overwintering method works best in climates where winter frosts and freezing temperatures are uncommon. For those that experience harsher winters, planters can pot pepper plants and move them indoors. These plants will not produce fruit in their new home, but this overwintering technique will protect them until the next season.
By growing your pepper plants as perennials, you’ll save time and money each year. You won’t have to purchase new seeds and start from scratch. Instead of tossing your pepper plants and starting anew, you can nurture them through the winter, ensuring longevity and saving you from extra work.
This hack will also make your garden more sustainable. By reusing and nurturing existing plants, you will conserve water and resources used to care for existing plants. It also minimizes waste from disposing and replacing perfectly viable plants if given the proper care.
Fellow TikTokers were surprised to learn pepper plants are perennials, sharing their thanks in the comment section.
“Geez, I buy new ones almost every year,” one user wrote. “Now I know. Thank you.”
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