Sow seeds indoors with heat from February, the ideal temperature is 20C. If sown in a seed tray seeds can be pricked out into 10cm pots once they germinate, or if grown in plugs pot them on when they have two sets of true leaves. Transplant into final position in May, either under cover or in a sunny sheltered spot. Plants may need staking as they grow. The main shoot can be pinched out when the plants are 30cm tall to encourage side shoots but this is not essential.
Peppers were domesticated in Central and South America and brought to the rest of the world with the Spanish and Portuguese. Most of the peppers introduced to Europe didn’t come directly from the Americas but from India, Asia and Africa via Turkish trading routes.