Why Are My Jalapenos Turning Black and How to Solve It?


There’s no doubt, jalapenos are a great addition to any meal (thanks for their spicy heat flavor!). Most of the jalapenos are green when you pick them. But, you may have noticed some of them are black or started turning black, right?

And then, that being said, why are my jalapenos turning black?

Well, this is worth a headache because your plant likely has a serious issue that should be addressed as soon as possible. No worries as we’ve got your back. Hence, we have compiled some possible problems and solutions regarding this topic plus kept a FAQ section to rub off your confusion.

Let’s get into the details.

Smoked black jalapenos
Photo by Elena Moiseeva

The Answers of WHY(?)

Mutating or turning yellow/ black plants can be quite a concern for plant owners. Before we start talking about the solutions, let’s have a look over the problems first. Here is a list of the possible reasons turning your Jalapenos black:

  • Blossom end rot
  • Black rot
  • Anthracnose Infection
  • Mosaic virus
  • Natural causes

Now, let’s get to know the problems in a detailed manner and how could you possibly fix this.

Problem 1: Blossom End Rot

Generally, members of the nightshade family which include peppers and tomatoes (Solanum lycopersicum L.) are frequently attacked by Blossom end rot. So, what will tell you that your plant is facing exactly this issue?

Well, signs like a moldy looking spot at the blossom end of the pepper (that turns black over time) will imply that the reason behind it is Blossom end rot. Now, the question is why does this happen?

No, this is not caused by any infections. Improper watering, adverse weather conditions, or calcium deficiency can lead to this trouble.

Solution: To preserve the soil’s moisture, mulching around the Jalapeno plants will help. But if the soil’s pH is below 6.0, the soil may create an imbalance of calcium and it prevents the pepper plants from properly absorbing water from the soil.

To solve this problem, amend the soil with Limestone until the pH is above 6.0. But, sorry to say that it will not reserve the condition on affected peppers, you have to discard those from the plants.

Problem 2: Black Rot

Black rot will affect your Jalapeno peppers in case you leave them on the plant to ripen until they turn red. You may be confused thinking of how you will distinguish it from blossom end rot.

Actually, Black rot affects fully ripened black peppers as well as covers part of the pepper other than the blossom end. The cause leading to this is too much moisture. Yes, if there is too much moisture from excessive watering or rain around ripening Jalapeno plants, Black rot can rear its ugly head.

Solution: To prevent black rot, only water the soil at the base of the plant so that the fruit is kept dry during watering. If you want red peppers, do not leave the peppers on the plant too long after they have fully ripened. Most importantly, discard any jalapenos that are victims of black rot.

Problem 3: Anthracnose Infection

This one cause parts of jalapeno peppers to turn black. But you can easily differentiate it from blossom end rot as in this case, the black areas will be along the sides of pepper rather than the end.

Actually, a fungus causes the watery bruises that are common with anthracnose. By degrees, these spots may appear on the leaves, stems, or peppers of the plants. Moreover, they will progress to become black spots where they develop.

Solution: The bad news is there is no means to correct an anthracnose infection on your jalapeno peppers. You can prevent it only if you plant seeds from a reputable source.

Another point worth noting is, you can’t plant in the same bed where any other member of the nightshade family who was affected by anthracnose grew within the last two years.

Remove weeds regularly and keep the garden area neat and clean to seal the chances of happening this in the future. You can use a dandelion digger to remove all the weed from the areas.

Problem 4: Mosaic Virus

Mosaic viruses will prevent your jalapeno plant from producing properly ripened, fully formed peppers. The affected peppers usually have darkened areas on them as well as look smaller than the unaffected peppers.

Other telltale signs are curled leaves with both light and dark green areas and a reduced growth of the plant.

Solution: Here’s another unwanted announcement, there is no treatment. What you can do is to prevent this variety of viral infections in your pepper plants and keep them from spreading through your garden.

You can lay down foil for mulch around your pepper plants. It will help your plants to prevent virus-carrying insects from reaching them. Besides, it will be helpful to pull out the entire plants that show symptoms of a viral infection and discard them to keep the infections from spreading.

Problem 5: Natural Causes

If none of the above happened to your jalapeno plants, then it can be natural. Yes, jalapenos turning black on the plant is a part of their natural growth and ripening process.

So, examine carefully whether your jalapenos are struggling with the above-mentioned 4 issues or it’s quite natural.

Why Are My Jalapenos Turning Black – FAQs

Question: When should I pick jalapenos?

Answer: Actually, there is no set time for harvest; you can feel free to pick the pepper based on taste.

Question: If I have jalapeno and some of the seeds inside are dark, what does that mean?

Answer: Well, it means the peppers are getting a little old and possibly starting to mold inside. You can cut out any discolored parts and use the rest.


Voila! You now know the answers to why are my jalapenos turning black and what to do for getting rid of it.

Actually, you need to be careful throughout the time you grow the plants and harvest the fruit and seed. It’s important to think of everything (e.g sunlight, watering, diseases, pest, and insects). It helps to prevent any future dilemma from the very first days.

Apart from this, you can easily fix the issues now, go for it. Good luck!

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Celina Nance

It’s been a life-long wish of Celina Nance to have a lawn full of colorful flower beds. But living in Arizona city, that seems kind of impossible. But Celina Nance didn’t stop and created a full-form balcony garden instead. And he often shares stuff that he does/solves/innovates throughout the journey.

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