Pepper, Sweet Great Stuff Hybrid
A colossal stuffer at 7" long and 5" wide, ripens from green to dark red.
Days To Maturity
8-12 weeks BLF
Plant Shipping Information
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How to Sow and Plant
- Only home gardeners who enjoy long growing seasons in the Deep South should attempt to sow pepper seeds directly in the vegetable garden. Most of us must start our own pepper plants indoors about 8-10 weeks before transplanting, which should be done 2-3 weeks after the expected last frost.
- Sow seeds ¼ inch deep in seed-starting formula
- Keep the soil moist at 75 degrees F
- Seedlings emerge in 10-21 days
- As soon as seedlings emerge, provide plenty of light on a sunny windowsill or grow seedlings 3-4 inches beneath fluorescent plant lights turned on 16 hours per day, off for 8 hours at night. Raise the lights as the plants grow taller. Incandescent bulbs will not work for this process because they will get too hot. Most plants require a dark period to grow, do not leave lights on for 24 hours.
- Seedlings do not need much fertilizer, feed when they are 3-4 weeks old using a starter solution (half strength of a complete indoor houseplant food) according to manufacturer’s directions.
- If you are growing in small cells, you may need to transplant the seedlings to 3 or 4 inch pots when seedlings have at least 3 pairs of leaves before transplanting to the garden so they have enough room to develop strong roots
- Before planting in the garden, seedling plants need to be “hardened off”. Accustom young plants to outdoor conditions by moving them to a sheltered place outside for a week. Be sure to protect them from wind and hot sun at first. If frost threatens at night, cover or bring containers indoors, then take them out again in the morning. This hardening off process toughens the plant’s cell structure and reduces transplant shock and scalding.
Planting in the Garden:
- To get an early start with your pepper plants, particularly in the North, cover the prepared bed with a dark colored polyethylene mulch at least a week before transplanting. This will heat the soil beneath and provide a better growing condition for young pepper plants. The mulch will also help the soil retain moisture throughout the season as the pepper plants grow.
- Select a location in full sun with good rich moist organic soil. Make sure you did not grow tomatoes, peppers, eggplant or potatoes in the bed the previous year to avoid disease problems.
- Prepare the bed by turning the soil under to a depth of 8 inches. Level with a rake to remove clumps of grass and stones.
- Peppers should be set 18 inches apart in a row with the rows spaced 2-3 feet inches apart.
- Dig a hole for each plant large enough to amply accommodate the root ball.
- Carefully remove the plant from its pot and gently loosen the root ball with your hands to encourage good root development.
- Fill the planting hole with soil to the top and press soil down firmly with your hand leaving a slight depression around the plant to hold water.
- Use the plant tag as a location marker. This is particularly important if you are trying different varieties. It is very difficult to tell which variety is which from the foliage.
- Water thoroughly, so that a puddle forms in the saucer you have created. This settles the plants in, drives out air pockets and results in good root-to-soil contact.
- Peppers may also be planted in containers. Use a container at least 18-24 inches wide and deep and use a commercial potting mix rather than garden soil.
How to Grow
- Keep weeds under control during the growing season. Weeds compete with plants for water, space and nutrients, so control them by either cultivating often or use a mulch to prevent their seeds from germinating.
- Mulches also help retain soil moisture and maintain even soil temperatures. This is especially important for peppers as their roots may be easily damaged when weeding, and this can lead to blossom end rot.
- Keep plants well-watered during the growing season, especially during dry spells. Plants need about 1-2" of rain per week during the growing season. Use a rain gauge to check to see if you need to add water. It's best to water with a drip or trickle system that delivers water at low pressure at the soil level. If you water with overhead sprinklers, water early in the day so the foliage has time to dry off before evening, to minimize disease problems. Keep the soil moist but not saturated.
- Note that hot peppers tend to be hotter when they have less water and fertilizer. If they receive plenty of water and fertilizer they may be more mild than expected.
- Monitor for pests and diseases. Check with your local Cooperative Extension Service for pest controls recommended for your area.
- Try planting pepper plants near tomatoes, parsley, basil, and carrots in your home vegetable garden. Don't plant them near fennel or kohlrabi. Peppers are very colorful when in full fruit and combine well with green herbs, okra, beans and cucumber fences in the garden bed.
Harvesting and Preserving Tips
- Like cucumbers and summer squash, peppers are usually harvested at an immature stage. The traditional bell pepper, for example, is harvested green, even though most varieties will mature red, orange, or yellow. Peppers may be harvested at any stage, but their flavor doesn’t fully develop until maturity. Fully ripe peppers in multi-colors are delightful in the garden as well as in salads.
- Cut the fruit from the plant with a sharp knife or pruners leaving a small part of the stem attached.
- Sweet bell, pimento and cherry peppers are delicious eaten green but are sweeter and higher in vitamins if allowed to turn bright red before harvest. Some varieties are yellow at maturity or may mature from green through yellow and red.
- Hot peppers may be harvested at any stage. Anaheim is usually picked green and cayenne types red.
- Bell peppers may be chopped and quick frozen for use in many recipes; sweet cherry and banana peppers and hot cherry peppers are perfect for pickling.
- A popular and trouble-free way to store hot peppers is to dry them. String mature red peppers by piercing the stem with a needle and heavy thread. Hang the string in a warm, dry, airy place (not in the sun!) to dry. They can make a colorful kitchen accent. Pull a pepper from the string when you need one. Hot peppers remain hot even after they are dried. Remember that in recipes a little hot pepper can go a long way.
- Please note that hot peppers can burn sensitive skin on contact and fumes from grinding or cooking them can irritate the lungs and eyes. When working with hot peppers use rubber gloves and wash your hands before touching your face or eyes.
Days To Maturity75 daysFruit Size7 inchesSunFull SunSpread12 inchesHeight18-24 inchesSow MethodIndoor SowPlanting TimeSpringSow Time8-12 weeks BLFThin24 inchesLife CycleAnnual
Pepper, Sweet Great Stuff Hybrid is rated out of 5 by 7.Rated 5 out of 5 by Tifishin from Good choice Good germination percentage. Plants grew well with regular fertilization. I topped most of the plants to get a more sturdy main stalk. Prolific bearers. Fruit was well shaped, good looking and tasty. Even after topping, plants require sturdy staking to prevent toppling under the fruit weight. In my area, fruits take a while to mature. Green peppers available early, but if you are looking for red, it was well into late summer. Fruits continued into November....it was a very mild fall. A good choice, I will definitely be using them in 2016 garden.Date published: 2015-12-29Rated 5 out of 5 by Biking from Fantastic Pepper This is my first year growing the Great Stuff pepper and it definitely won't be my last. The pepper size lives up to its name as its perfect for stuffed pepper recipes. The plants had no issues making it through our rainy start. They continue to produce even in late August! I love that the pepper turns red and adds another feature to any dish. We have both green and red peppers from one plant. Highly recommend!!Date published: 2013-08-30Rated 5 out of 5 by Anonymous from really good pepper I grew this pepper four or five years ago and had wonderful results. The peppers were as big as advertised and the hardiness and yield was great. For the last several years I have grown other varieties of peppers and been disappointed. This year, I going with GreatStuff..Date published: 2010-12-19Rated 4 out of 5 by TheHappyGardener from Good Performer In The Right Conditions! I will give these peppers 4 stars because they can be a very good large elongated hybrid bell for stuffing as well as for roasting when red....but I must stress that the soil, weather and water drainage conditions have to be ideal for them to turn out the way you see them on the pictures. My first year growing these back in 2008, they turned out looking more like italian macaroni peppers (more skinny and elongated) than the hybrid stuffing bells that I wanted. That in itself wouldn't have been a bad thing, but I already had 3 macaroni pepper plants thriving alongside them, so I wanted them to be the peppers they were advertised to be. Burpee isn't really to fault for this because it's more of a Mother Nature issue! Certain conditions produce certain results...all peppers, hot or sweet, come from the same genus. So if you've ever had hot peppers which yeild a few hot peppers and then somewhere during the summer they start to metamorphasize into gypsy peppers, you know what I mean! The best soil conditioning I've found here in Charlotte, NC with our heavy red clay soil is my mixture of miracle gro garden soil, composted cow manure, peat & humus mixture, play sand, pelletized garden lime, bone & blood meal, slow release 10-10-10 fertilizer and, believe it or not, some epsom salts! (-: Ladies & Gentlemen, since I started using this mixture in 2009, I have experienced miraculous results in tomatoes, peppers, leafy veggies, and almost everything else I've put into the ground! (-: That year, these peppers exceeded all expectations and grew just as advertised! Great for stuffed pepper lovers, and again, great roasted when red! Water every 3 days when temps are mild and rain is moderate. But in drought and excessive heat conditions, you may want to go with every other day in the early mornings, so the day sun will evaporate any water on leaves which could cause fungi and pepper diseases. Make sure soil drains properly because most plants don't like water to just sit on their roots for a long time. Mulch with a stringy mulch like cypress (2 inches deep) which has alot of natural anti-fungal and insecticidal properties. Spray with Sevin solution (hose attachment kind) every 2 weeks to thwart pests. When real young and first put outdoors, I usually lightly dust with Sevin dust on the leaves as well as around the soil in a 2 inch radius to stop cutworm assualts to young stems. They will literally cut them off at the soil line if you don't watch out! Once they get a little bigger and tougher, they won't bother them anymore. ~~Good Luck & Enjoy!!~~Date published: 2010-11-05Rated 4 out of 5 by dachshund from Great Stuff I planted these peppers from seeds, good germination, good plant vigor, transplanted to garden when weather warmed. Plants grew well but were slow to set fruit, did not set well during hot weather which is typical of tomatoes and peppers, but began to set ok when weather cooled a bit. Fair to moderate crop, good taste, good sized but not as large as stated in catalouge. I have not completely made up my mind yet if I will try them again, had better luck with a different varity last year.Date published: 2008-11-12Rated 5 out of 5 by Helen from Best Peppers I do my gardening in containers on my deck. I purchased the 3-plant set instead of seeds. Each plant produced many peppers. The production slowed down a bit during the extremely hot weather but quickly picked up when the temps became more bearable for plants, animals, and humans alike. Most peppers grew as described in the catalog - some grew a little curled but still very edible. The flavor of this pepper (and any homegrown produce) can't be beat, especially compared to the produce sitting in the grocery stores.Date published: 2007-09-30