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I'm new to gardening, this is the second time for me trying to make a vegetable garden. Last year I bought a plant of chili and it grew very big. Some branches became very long at the bottom and with the weight of the chilies they almost touched the ground. I don't want to make the same mistake this year so I was trying to understand how to prune them. I googled "how to prune chili plants" (and I read for example https://homeguides.sfgate.com/trim-chili-pepper-bush-29973.html), but I can't apply those techniques to every single type of chili I guess, especially when I don't even know what the plant should look like (a bush, a little tree..). I took a picture for every chili I have, can you please help me identify identify the branches I should remove? I just numbered the branches without numbering the leaves to make the pictures look cleaner. Should some leaves be cut as well?

Hot daisy? I can't find it under this name, it's this exact chili here though enter image description here

Long Cayenne enter image description here

Jalapeno enter image description here

Jamaican scotch bonnet: enter image description here

Aji amarillo enter image description here

Thank you!

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I never prune my peppers, choosing instead to cage them with something like this type of cage, shown with a tomato. The cage is about 36"/1m tall and about 12"/30cm in diameter at the top. It's strong enough to hold all heavily laden branches off the ground and forgiving enough to not break the branches against the wire. This setup is particularly helpful with ancho peppers, because those do well in my garden, growing at least 36" tall with a great fruit-set.

Caging peppers has a couple of advantages over pruning:

  • More fruits, since you're not cutting fruit-producing branches off the plant
  • Good airflow around the fruit because the branches are supported well clear of each other.
  • No worries about what to prune, and when/how often to prune.

A couple of things you might expect to happen, such as sun damage on the fruit and a reduction in fruit size due to more fruit on the plant, have not happened at all.

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