I never pegged myself as the type to grow any type of vegetable. But maybe I should not be surprised with the way my love for all things gardening is increasing these days. Anyway, I didn’t plan to grow a pepper plant but came upon the opportunity by chance in the most unlikely of places, work. A few months ago someone at work asked if people were interested in growing pepper plants she had bought as plugs. I and four others indicated we were interested and someone else suggested we make a competition out of it. Everyone was enthusiastic about the competition and we contributed a pound each for the soil and pots. I kept quiet about my little knowledge of plants and although I was keen to win the competition I didn’t labour the point. I did however offer a few tips on how to plant the plugs such as making sure the soil in the pot was wet but not saturated completely before they transplanted the pepper plant. While at first mine didn’t grow so well it soon picked up momentum. A few weeks later one colleague’s plant was dead, it grew fast and then wilted.
To this day no one is quite sure what really happened. One other colleagues’ plant refused to grow, I advised them to change their plant pot as it didn’t have good drainage but they didn’t listen and it soon died a death. Along the way two other colleagues plants died due to overwatering. To cut the long story short from six initial competitors just two of us had our pepper plants still alive till this day. How, because we watered, fed our plants and changed the pot to a bigger size at the appropriate time to allow the plant to grow more it thrived. While both looked healthy and produced two pepper plants each, mine was slightly bigger mainly because of the tomato plant food it received. I think I won but since most people’s plants died, the enthusiasm for the competition has waned to nil.
I’ve learnt a bit through growing this pepper plant. For instance, I didn’t know that pepper plants start with a green colour and gradually change to yellow and possibly red. The latter I’m yet to find out as I plucked off one of my pepper plants from work last Friday and I’ve left the other one on to see what happens. That’s is if it’s still alive when I get back to work after a week’s holiday. The other thing I’ve been reminded about is that “the race is not to the swift …. time and chance happen to them all” (Ecc 9:11)