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Crop Guide: Pepper Fertilization Recommendations

 

1. Fertilization recommendations

The recommendations appearing in this document should be regarded as a general guide only. The exact fertilization program should be determined according to the specific crop needs, soil and water conditions, and the grower’s experience. For detailed recommendations, consult a local Haifa representative.
 
Disclaimer: Any use of the information given here is made at the reader’s sole risk. Haifa Chemicals Ltd. provides no warranty whatsoever for "Error Free" data, nor does it warrants the results that may be obtained from use of the provided data, or as to the accuracy, reliability or content of any information provided here.
 
In no event will Haifa Chemicals Ltd. or its employees be liable for any damage or punitive damages arising out of the use of or inability to use the data included.
 

 2. Soil-grown pepper

2a. Pepper crop guide: 3.1.1 Haifa NutriNet™ web software for Nutrigation™ programs
Haifa fertilization recommendations are available for everyone - enter into NutriNet™, a unique expert software program, that will assist you working out the recommended fertilizer rates at different growth stages according to the expected yield under your growing conditions.
 
The following is an example of recommendations, determined by NutriNet, with the assumption to split the scheduled fertilization into: 
a) Base-dressing (pre-plant) fertilizers, followed by: 
b) Nutrigation (fertigation) at different growth stages, on sandy-loam soil, when the expected yield is 65 ton/ha:
 
a) Base-dressing (kg/ha):


 
b) Nutrigation
Total amount of fertigation-applied fertilizers (kg/ha)

 
Table 10: The total contribution of plant nutrients from each fertilizer as calculated by NutriNet™.
Fertilizer
kg/ha
N
P2O5
K2O
CaO
MgO
Ammonium nitrate 34-0-0
247.7
81.7
 
 
 
 
Haifa MAP™ 12-61-0
126.2
15.5
77
 
 
 
Multi-K 13-0-46
760.9
98.9
 
350
 
 
Calcium nitrate (26% CaO)
73.1
11
 
 
19
 
Magnesium sulfate (16% MgO)
75
 
 
 
 
12
Total
1283
215
77
350
19
12
 
Table 11: Recommended nutrient rates per ha per day and per growth stage as calculated by NutriNet™.
Phase
Days from
sowing/planting
kg/ha/day
kg/ha/phase
N
P2O5
K2O
CaO
MgO
N
P2O5
K2O
CaO
MgO
Planting
1
1
0
1
0
0
1
0
1
0
0
1st phase
2-30
0.66
0.24
1.07
0.07
0.03
119
7
31
2
1
Main season
31-70
2.65
0.95
43
0.23
0.15
106
38
172
9
6
End season
71-130
1.98
0.72
3.23
0.18
0.12
119
43
194
11
7
Total
2455
88
398
22
14
 
Table 12: Recommended fertilizers rates per growth stage.
Phase
Days from sowing/planting
kg/ha/phase
Ammonium 
nitrate 
34-0-0
Haifa MAP™* 
12-61-0
Multi-K™ *
13-0-46
Haifa Cal™*
(26% CaO)
Magnesium 
sulfate 
(16% MgO)
Planting
1
2
0
2
0
0
1st phase
2-30
23
11
67
8
6
Main season
31-70
132
62
374
35
38
End season
71-130
145
70
422
42
44
Total
302
143
965
85
88
 
 
*
Haifa Multi-K Classic Potassium NitrateHaifa MAP™ - Mono-ammonium phosphateHaifa Cal™ - Calcium nitrate  
 
Example: Growing practice of peppers in Israel 
Duration of the growth season:
  • In the southern part of the country (dry and hot climate) growth season of pepper in net houses starts on August and ends by the end of April. The season is rather long because of the scarcity of precipitates (ca 70 mm per year).
  • The summer growth term starts on April and lasts till the end of December.
  • In greenhouses and plastic tunnels the growth season is between August and April.
  • In open field the season starts on April and ends on June.
 
Table 13: NK ratio
Standard pepper plant density in Israel is 30,000 – 35,000 plants/ ha. 
Average yield of open-field grown pepper in Israel is 55 – 70 T/ha.
Average yield of net house grown pepper in Israel is 90 – 110 T/ha.
 
Kg / ha /Ton pepper yield
N
20-30
P2O5*
27.5
K2O*
48-60
 
Table 14: Open field Pepper fertilization program (Planting on the 1-15 of April).
A. Plant nutrients.
Growth phase
Stage duration (days)
kg/ha/day
kg/ha/phase
N
P2O5
K2O
N
P2O5
K2O
First 2 weeks
14
1-1.5
1-1.5
1-1.5
14-21
14-21
14-21
Vegetative Growth
14
2-2.5
1
3.0-4.0
14
14
42-56
Flowering - fruit set
40
3.0-4.0
1
4.5-5
40
40
180-200
Fruit set - harvest
75
2-2.5
1
3.0-4.0
75
75
225-300
Total
145
 
 
 
300-400
140-150
460-580
 
B. Actual fertilizers.
Growth phase
Stage duration (days)
kg/ha/day
kg/ha/phase
A.N.*
Multi-K®*
Haifa MAP™*
A.N.*
Multi-K®*
Haifa MAP™*
First 2 weeks
14
0.5-1
2.5-4
3.5-5.5
7-14
35-55
50-75
Vegetative Growth
14
0.5-1.5
8-14.5
3.5
7-21
110-200
19
Flowering - fruit set
40
3-5.5
12-13
3.5
120-220
480-520
140
Fruit set - harvest
75
0.5-1.5
8-14.5
3.5
37-110
600-1100
263
Total
145
 
 
 
170-365
1225-1875
470-495
 
* A.N. = ammonium nitrate
Multi-K®  = Potassium nitrate
Haifa MAP = Mono-ammonium phosphate
 
 
2b. Crop Guide: Nutritional recommendations for pepper
in open-field, tunnels and greenhouse - Poly-Feed™ water-soluble NPK fertilizers
 
Table 15: fertilization recommendations for bell pepper in tunnels. Expected yield: 50 ton/ha.
Growth stage
Days
Poly-Feed® formula
kg/ha/day
Total kg/ha
Initial establishment
7
15-30-15
8
56
Vegetative to fruit set
20
19-19-19
13
260
Fruit set to 1st harvest
20
18-9-27
13
260
Harvest
100
18-9-27
13
1300
 
Table 16: fertilization recommendations for bell pepper in greenhouse.  Expected yield: 120 ton/ha
Growth stage
Days
Poly-Feed® formula
kg/ha/day
Total kg/ha
Initial establishment
10
15-30-15
8
80
Vegetative to fruit set
25
19-19-19
13
325
Fruit set to 1st harvest
20
18-9-27
15
600
Harvest
170
18-9-27
13
2210
 
 
 
2c. Pepper crop guide: Multicote™ Agri controlled release fertilizers
An N:P2O:K2O ratio of 2:1:3 is recommended, as pre-plant application. This application will take care of the nutritional requirement of the plot for the entire growth season. 
Multicote™ Agri granules should be incorporated into the soil, 10cm deep and 10cm away from the planting row. 
Consult a local Haifa representative for detailed explanations and instructions.

 
 
Table 17: Multicote® Agri application recommendations bell pepper in greenhouse
kg/ha
Analysis
Longevity
2,500 - 3,500
17-9-27
8 months
 

3. Soilless-grown pepper 

3a. Pepper crop guide: Straight fertilizers
There are different growth media with different physical and chemical characteristics. The following are general fertilization recommendations for all soilless growth media.

Fertilizer stock solution: Once dissolved, not all fertilizers are inter-compatible with each other. Therefore, they have to be split into two fertilizer tanks: A and B, according to their compatibility. Fertilizers containing phosphorus (P) or sulfur (S) should be dissolved in Tank A only, while fertilizers containing calcium (Ca) or magnesium (Mg) should be dissolved in Tank B.  

The concentration of the fertilizers stock solution depends on: 
1. The ambient temperature (higher ambient temperature enables higher concentration) 
2. The injection rate - how many liters of the fertilizer solution will be injected into each cubic meter (1000 liters) of the irrigated water 
Dividing the injection capacity by one cubic meter should be the concentration of the fertilizer solution. If, for example, the injector will deliver 5 L into each cubic meter of the irrigated water 
(1000 L / 5 L = 200), the amount of fertilizer dissolved in the tank should be multiplied by 200.
Example I - Holland
The following example was prepared to fit Dutch conditions (low transpiration and low water EC). Considerable and proportional reduction in the concentration of the macronutrients should be practiced at lower water quality prevailing in other conditions.
 
Table 20: Nutrition database for sweet pepper in Holland, grown on rockwool
Parameter
Nutrient solution (ppm)
EC (mS/cm)
2.2
N- NH4
17.3
N- NO3
216.9
P
39
H2PO4
121.3
K
254.2
Ca
190.5
Mg
36.5
S, total
55.5
SO4
168.2

Table 21: Recommended water-soluble fertilizers and their rates, to prepare the above recommended solution:
Fertilizers
g/m3
Plant nutrients – g/m3 solution
NO3
NH4
P*
K*
Ca*
Mg*
S*
Multi-K®
500
65
 
 
190
 
 
 
K2SO4
150
 
 
 
63
 
 
22.5
Haifa Cal™
1000
155
 
 
 
190
 
 
Magnisal®
120
13.2
 
 
 
 
10.8
 
MgSO4
260
 
 
 
 
 
26
33.8
Haifa MAP™
140
 
16.8
37.8
 
 
 
 
Total
233.2
16.8
37.8
253
190
36.8
56.3
 
Example II – Florida, USA
 
Table 22: Hydroponic fertilizer solution concentration for growing peppers in a shade house on a composted pine bark medium
Nutrient
Nutrient Concentration (ppm = mg/L)
Transplant to first flower
After first flower
N
100
130
P
50
50
K
120
200
Ca
100
150
Mg
40
50
S
50
60
 
Table 23: Recommended water-soluble fertilizers and their rates to prepare a fertilizer solution from transplant to first flower and a fertilizer solution after first flower.

A.  From transplant to first flower
Fertilizers
g/m3
Plant nutrients – g/m3 solution
NO3
NH4
P*
K*
Ca*
Mg*
S*
Multi-K®
150
19.5
 
 
57
 
 
 
Haifa Cal™
530
82.15
 
 
 
100.7
 
 
MgSO4
400
 
 
 
 
 
40
52
Multi-MKP™
220
 
 
49.94
61.6
 
 
 
Total
101.65
0
49.94
118.6
100.7
40
52
 
* conversion factors:  P x 2.29 = P2O5 ; K x 1.20 = K2O ; Ca x 1.40 = CaO  ; Mg x 1.66 = MgO ;  
   S x 3.00 = SO4
 
B. After first flower
Fertilizers
g/m3
Plant nutrients – g/m3 solution
NO3
NH4
P*
K*
Ca*
Mg*
S*
Multi-K®
360
46.8
 
 
136.8
 
 
 
Haifa Cal™
680
105.4
 
 
 
129.2
 
 
MgSO4
470
 
 
 
 
 
47
61.1
Multi-MKP™
220
 
 
49.94
61.6
 
 
 
Total
152.2
0
49.94
198.4
129.2
47
61.1
 
Example III – general USDA recommendations:
 
Table 24: total nutritional requirements
Nutrient
Nutrient Concentration (ppm = mg/L)
Transplant to first flower
After first flower
N
70
160
P
50
50
K
119
200
Ca
110
190
Mg
40
48
S
55
65
 
Table 25: Recommended water-soluble fertilizers and their rates to prepare a fertilizer solution 

A.  From transplant to first flower 
Fertilizers
g/m3
Plant nutrients – g/m3 solution
NO3
NH4
P*
K*
Ca*
Mg*
S*
Multi-K®
80
10.4
 
 
30.4
 
 
 
K2SO4
60
 
 
 
25.2
 
 
9
Haifa Cal™
580
89.9
 
 
 
110.2
 
 
MgSO4
400
 
 
 
 
 
40
52
Multi-MKP™
220
 
 
49.94
61.6
 
 
 
Total
100.3
0
49.94
117.2
110.2
40
61
 
B. After first flower
Fertilizers
g/m3
Plant nutrients – g/m3 solution
NO3
NH4
P*
K*
Ca*
Mg*
S*
Multi-K®
140
18.2
 
 
53.2
 
 
 
K2SO4
200
 
 
 
84
 
 
30
Haifa Cal™
1000
155
 
 
 
190
 
 
MgSO4
480
 
 
 
 
 
48
62.4
Multi-MKP™
220
 
 
49.94
61.6
 
 
 
Total
173.2
0
49.94
198.8
190
48
92.4
 
* conversion factors: P x 2.29 = P2O5 ; K x 1.20 = K2O ; Ca x 1.40 = CaO ; Mg x 1.66 = MgO ; S x 3.00 = SO4
 
Example IV – Israel
Recommendations are for macro nutrients (N, P & K) by growth stages.
 
Table 26:  Recommendations for nutrient concentrations in irrigation (drip) water for soilless grown peppers in Israel.
Growth Stage
Period
(g/m3)
N
P*
K*
Establishment –3rd flower
Early Fall
50-60
15-20
75-80
Fruit development and growth
Fall
80-100
25-30
100-120
Harvesting
Winter
150-180
30-35
200-230
Harvesting
Early Spring
140-150
30-35
160-190
Harvesting
Spring-Summer
120-130
25-30
150-160
 
Important: EC of irrigation water should be lower than 2.0 mS/cm
 
Table 27: Required amount of fertilizers to supply the above-recommended nutrients, by growth stages

A. Establishment to 3rd flower
Fertilizers
g/m3
Plant nutrients – g/m3 solution
NO3
NH4
P*
K*
Ammonium nitrate
50-70
8.5-11.9
8.5-11.9
 
 
Multi-K®
200-210
26-27.3
 
 
76-79.8
Haifa MAP™
60-80
 
7.2-9.6
16.2-21.6
 
Sub-total N
50-70
8.5-11.9
 
 
Total
50.2-60.7
16.2-21.6
76-79.8
 
* conversion factors: P x 2.29 = P2O5 ; K x 1.20 = K2O ; Ca x 1.40 = CaO ; Mg x 1.66 = MgO ; S x 3.00 = SO4
 
B. Fruit development & growth
Fertilizers
g/m3
Plant nutrients – g/m3 solution
NO3
NH4
P*
K*
Ammonium nitrate
10-130
17-22.1
17-22.1
 
 
Multi-K®
260-320
33.8-41.6
 
 
98.8-121.6
Haifa MAP™
90-110
 
10.8-13.2
24.3-29.7
 
Sub-total N
50-70
8.5-11.9
 
 
Total
78.6-99
24.3
98.8-121.6
 
C. Harvesting - winter
Fertilizers
g/m3
Plant nutrients – g/m3 solution
NO3
NH4
P*
K*
Ammonium nitrate
200-250
34-42.5
34-42.5
 
 
Multi-K®
530-610
68.9-79.3
 
 
201.4-231.8
Haifa MAP™
110-130
 
13.2-15.6
29.7-35.1
 
Sub-total N
102.9-121.8
47.2-58.1
 
 
Total
150.1-179.9
29.7-35.1
201.4-231.8
 
D. Harvesting – early spring
Fertilizers
g/m3
Plant nutrients – g/m3 solution
NO3
NH4
P*
K*
Ammonium nitrate
210-200
35.7-34
35.7-34
 
 
Multi-K®
42-500
54.6-65
 
 
159.6-190
Haifa MAP™
110-130
 
13.2-15.6
29.7-35.1
 
Sub-total N
90.3-99
48.9-49.6
 
 
Total
139.2-148.6
29.7
159.6
 
E. Harvesting - spring - summer
Fertilizers
g/m3
Plant nutrients – g/m3 solution
NO3
NH4
P*
K*
Ammonium nitrate
160-210
27.2-35.7
27.2-35.7
 
 
Multi-K®
400-420
52-54.6
 
 
152-159.6
Haifa MAP™
100-110
 
12-13.2
27-29.7
 
Sub-total N
79.2-90.3
39.2-48.9
 
 
Total
118.4-139.2
27-29.7
152-159.6
 
* conversion factors:  P x 2.29 = P2O5 ; K x 1.20 = K2O ; Ca x 1.40 = CaO  ; Mg x 1.66 = MgO ;  S x 3.00 = SO4
 
Pepper crop guide: Poly-Feed™ water-soluble NPKs
 
Table 28: Recommended composition of nutritional solution for soilless-grown peppers

A. In moderate or cold climate with low sun radiation and soft water (North and North-East Europe, North France, UK, Japan, Korea)
Concentration in irrigation water (ppm)
Recommended
Poly-Feed® formula
Conc.
(kg/m3)
N
P
K
Ca
Mg
190
45
285
130
40
14-10-34+ME
1.0
 
Some acid and Haifa Cal™ calcium nitrate should be added to adjust the pH and to complete calcium requirements.
 
B. In hot climate with high sun radiation and hard water (Middle East, Mediterranean countries)
Concentration in irrigation water (ppm)
Recommended
Poly-Feed® formula
Conc.
(kg/m3)
N
P
K
Ca
Mg
170
40
215
100
35
11-12-33
0.8
 
Some acid and Haifa Cal™ calcium nitrate should be added to adjust the pH and to complete calcium requirements.
 
 
Need more information about growing pepper? You can always return to the pepper fertilizer .