photo of an early maturing jalapeno pepper ripening to red

8 Early Maturing Peppers You Need to Try Growing

Are you looking for pepper plants that grow fast and produce fruit earlier than other varieties? Then you're probably in the market for some early maturing pepper seeds. These varieties are ideal for growers living in climates with shorter growing seasons or who want continual pepper harvests.

Check out our list of early maturing pepper varieties listed below, and make sure to add them to your growing list for the season!

What Does Early Maturing Mean for Peppers?

The term "early maturing" can be confusing to some. In short, pepper plant maturity describes the point at which you, as the grower, can confidently pick ripened peppers off of the plant. This is described in the term "days to maturity," or the amount of days it takes for peppers to bloom and be ready for picking. Another phrase used interchangeably with days to maturity is "days to harvest," as you'll see on different listings for pepper seeds and seedlings.

Peppers that mature early will have shorter days to harvest than other varieties. Another point to include is that early maturing pepper seeds aren't restricted to a certain type of pepper variety or pepper heat level. It is true that most early maturing peppers are of the Capsicum annuum species and tend to have less heat; however, there are some super hot peppers that are considered early maturing as well, as you'll see in the list below.

Benefits of Early Maturing Pepper Plants

Growing early maturing peppers can have many benefits as a gardener and pepper enthusiast:

  • Ready for Harvest Sooner
    Early maturing pepper plants have shorter growing seasons, which means they will take less time to germinate, grow, and developed fully-ripened pepper pods ready to harvest than other varieties.
  • Increases Pepper Harvests
    Most early maturing peppers are continuous developers - they will produce another round of ripened peppers after the initial harvest. By strategically planting early maturing peppers, you will likely increase your harvests and have plenty of peppers to use!
  • Get a Jump on Homemade Pepper Recipes
    Because of having fully-ripened peppers earlier than others, you'll be able to get started on your homemade recipes and hot sauces sooner than anticipated!

So without further ado, here are 8 early maturing peppers that you need to try growing in your garden!

8 Early-Maturing Pepper Seeds

photo of chocolate beauty peppers sitting on a table

1. Chocolate Beauty

Species: Capsicum Annuum
Heat Level:
0 SHUs
Origin: Central & South America 
Days to Harvest: 60 Days

At number one, we have the Chocolate Beauty pepper, one of the earliest pepper varieties we have here at Pepper Joe's. Chocolate Beauty peppers are a beautiful sweet pepper with luscious brown hues and a great crunchy texture perfect for using in fresh foods or eating raw. At 0 SHUs, this pepper needs no time to build up capsaicin for spiciness, and with a high germination rate of 93%, you can expect a lot of your seeds to be sprouting up fast.

The Chocolate Beauty is just one of many bell pepper varieties that are considered early maturing.


photo of Jalapeno Early peppers growing on a plant ripening to their red stage

2. Early Jalapeno

Species: Capsicum Annuum
Heat Level:
 2,500-8,000 SHUs
Origin: USA 
Days to Harvest: 65+ Days

Next, we have Jalapeno Early Pepper Seeds. This is a great variety not only for shorter growing seasons, but also for cooler climates when compared to other jalapeno varieties. These peppers have all of the classic jalapeno qualities, including the shape, color, texture, and flavor, that are perfect for any meal, appetizer, dip, salsa, or other food.

The Early Jalapeno pepper's days to harvest is around 65 days, ripening from green to red when ready to be picked. However, these peppers can also be harvested - and normally are - when they reach their dark green color.

picture of Pot-a-Peno early maturing peppers in a hanging container

3. Pot-a-Peno

Species: Capsicum Annuum
Heat Level:
 5,000 SHUs
Origin: USA
Days to Harvest: 45-65 Days

Another jalapeno variety, the Pot-o-Peno pepper plant won the All-American Selection (AAS) Award in 2021 for its prolific yields, fast maturity time, and compact growing. These jalapeno plants grow bunches of these 3-4" long pods that ripen from green to red, and can be picked at any point throughout their maturity. Green pods can be picked as early as 45 days, while red pods can be harvested around 60 days.

If you like container growing, then the Pot-o-Peno is the one for you! Grow them on your patio or porch, or hang them in your home for a nice, productive house plant.

close-up shot of a bunch of green shishito peppers

4. Shishito

Species: Capsicum Annuum
Heat Level:
 50-200 SHUs
Origin: Japan 
Days to Harvest: 60 Days

Also known as the "Wrinkled Old Man"  or Lion pepper, the Shishito pepper is a dominant variety in Japanese cuisine with its sweet and mild flavors best had when roasted, grilled, and sautéed. These peppers look similar to jalapenos with a slightly longer shape and a more wrinkly texture.

Shishito pepper plants spread out and produce pods ready for harvesting around 60 days.

image of a bunch of corbaci peppers tangled together in a grower's hands

5. Corbaci

Species: Capsicum Annuum
Heat Level:
 1,000 SHUs
Origin: Turkey
Days to Harvest: 55-75 Days

Halfway through our list, at number 5, we have the exotic-looking Corbaci Pepper coming all the way from Turkey. Growing off some very stubby plants, these pods stretch and contort up to 12" long, looking like multi-colored fingers curling out from the foliage! These are a one-of-a-kind rare heirloom pepper you'll want to try growing!

Corbaci plants are early producers, growing bountiful yields of these slender peppers that can be harvested as early as 55 days. Disclaimer: Be prepared for LARGE harvests with these peppers!

close-up shot of green padron peppers covered in dew

6. Padron

Species: Capsicum Annuum
Heat Level:
 2,500+ SHUs
Origin: Spain 
Days to Harvest: 60 Days

Next, we have the Padron Pepper, a Spanish heirloom that grows on sturdy and productive pepper plants. These peppers take on a similar shape and color to jalapenos, and they also take about the same amount of time to reach maturity. However, while it's recommended to harvest these pods when they hit 2-3" long, you can harvest them at either their green or red maturity stages.

Expect to see great results when planting these peppers - they have a high germination rate of 94%!

photo of different colored dante's hot peppers harvested from the plant

7. Dante's Hot

Species: Capsicum Annuum
Heat Level:
 2,500+ SHUs
Origin: Unknown
Days to Harvest: 60 Days

The Dante's Hot pepper is one of the largest varieties you'll grow! This massive hybrid pepper was bred to be larger, more productive, and of course, early maturing. These pods will ripen from light green to dark green, and finally to red when they're ready to be picked. With mild heat and a nice tangy flavor, Dante's Hot peppers are used for many culinary purposes like grilling, stuffing, roasting, frying, pickling, and more!

You can harvest these peppers as early as 60 Days. The great thing about Dante's Hot pepper plants is that they are early continuous producers - that is, expect more peppers to grow following your first harvest!

habanero peppers growing on a plant stalk in a garden

8. Habaneros

Species: Capsicum Chinense
Heat Level:
 100,000-350,000 SHUs
Origin: Amazon, reaching Mexico
Days to Harvest: 90 Days

The last entry on our list may come as a surprise, but for a hot pepper, Habaneros are considered early maturing! With a timeline of 90 days, Habaneros are quick to produce and form wonderful bright-orange pods filled with flavorful citrus tones and a biting heat. The only C. chinense variety on this list, Habanero peppers are kind of the outlier of their species (C. chinense peppers tend to take longer to mature due to them building up more capsaicin, AKA the chemical that gives peppers their heat). 

Habaneros are very popular in Mexico and Central America, used in many dishes for a flavorful burst of heat. These peppers are mass-produced and sold everywhere, with the Yucatan Peninsula being the largest producer in the world.

Get more pepper-growing info from our Gardening Tips & Tricks! Enjoy more pepper content over on our Pepper Talk page, where our experts talk about some of the hottest, most popular, and most unique peppers on the market!


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