Picking (Bell) Peppers

Have gorgeous orange/yellow Bell peppers ripening. I want to pick them at peak of perfection. I tug at them lightly every day, but they hold tight.
Is that when one is "supposed" to pick peppers -- when they come away from the plant?
This site:
http://www.homegrown-peppers.com/growing-peppers/when-to-pick-peppers/
has a different opinion, but writer does state that she picks earlier because of humid climate.
Mine is dry. Mediterranean. So.Calif coastal.
This site:
http://faq.gardenweb.com/faq/lists/pepper/2002072024032752.html
has more comprehensive information, but most is devoted to hot peppers. Just a few paragraphs on sweet peppers.
Would value input from people who either have that kind of climate, or have experience/information about when I should pick.
Awaiting your real life input tensely. I don't want to miss magic moment. BIG peppers bright yellow. Are they going to turn RED?
HB
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Higgs Boson wrote:

Green is immature but these are often picked anyway. The mature colour is a matter of genetics, you can get yellow, orange, red, purple, brown and possibly other colours. Those that end up red often go through yellow and orange on the way. The flavour may change as they mature, in some cases they get sweeter or the flavour intensifies. However as they get older they are more likely to get diseases. There is no one 'right' time. The tug test is not useful. I would have taken some when green. I suggest starting now and taste as the season progresses.
David
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Higgs Boson wrote:
...about when to pick...
at first we only grew the green California Wonder bell peppers. no heat. very easy to grow for us. always a good crop and little problems with pests or diseases. then we moved on to complicate matters by growing red, jalapeno and yellow peppers. we skipped jalapenos this season.
this is what i do.
i go by size, color and heft:
once the size and color are right then i check them every few days for weight.
take the pepper and gently bounce it in your hand. if it is heavy enough you know it's ready. if it never seems to get any heavier then pick it (if you've kept them watered regularly). you want a nice firm pepper. also if it starts getting soft then it's gone beyond top form. still edible, but not as crisp.
around here picking too late means they run the risk of damage by critters, bugs or disease. none of these make a pepper wholely inedible as you can always cut away what isn't in good form, but some folks won't touch it once it's been damaged.
of course, above only applies to the sweet peppers we've grown. for other types of peppers when to pick varies.
we're due to make a few hundred stuffed peppers this week along with picking tomatoes again and canning. no rain for too long, so watering has been needed. everything is coming along well.
cheers,
songbird
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Higgs Boson wrote:

Typical bell peppers are first green, then will turn red. Those of other color varietys like orange yellow, brown, purple, etc, begin as whatever color variety they are and remain that color, your yellow peppers do not turn red. There really is no precise time to harvest bell peppers; when they attain what you *feel* is there optimum size and color is the correct time... leaving bell peppers too long risks their rotting... bell peppers are best harvested sooner than later. I've grown many bell peppers of all types, I've found that only the green ones that turn red develop intense flavor... I think the other variously colored peppers while being quite edible never develop remarkable flavor, I think they are more a novelty grown primarily for presentation/visual effect, I certainly would not pay extra for them at the market. Here's a reliable website about bell peppers: http://www.burpee.com/vegetables/peppers/growing-peppers-article10252.html

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On Sunday, August 25, 2013 3:36:44 PM UTC-7, Brooklyn1 wrote:

Based on this input, I'm going to pick the big guy tomorrow -- slice stem with sharp knives - tug test NG. And will put the others to the heft test, per input.
These peppers were grown in an unusual way. At Home Depot, I saw a huge deep pot with three plants already loaded w/peppers. I said whatthehell, if I get $10.98 worth of peppers, I'll break even.
I THOUGHT I was buying RED, which is my favorite to just crunch along with whatever I'm eating. But turns out they are orange/yellow. How they do so well in that big deep pot I don't know, but don't ask <g>
So, thanks y'all. It's a little late, even here, to start from seed, but next year, if I'm spared, I'll plant a whole row.
HB
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Higgs Boson wrote:

Peppers grow well in So Cal... peppers like hot weather and you have a long growing season. You just need to decide what to do with a huge crop.
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On Sunday, August 25, 2013 6:32:19 PM UTC-7, Brooklyn1 wrote:

My late mother used to make dynamite Hungarian stuffed peppers. (Wipes mouth)
HB
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Higgs Boson wrote:

I like stuffed peppers, make sure you have enough freezer space for a large crop. I cut peppers in strips and lightly saute and freeze them in zip-loc bags, takes little freezer space and are very good in many recipes, I like them piled on burgers and other hot sandwiches (meatballs/sausages), and great with eggs.... can fry them with onions too. Roasted red peppers are good for pickling. http://smittenkitchen.com/blog/2007/05/the-road-to-pickle-proficiency/
I do a lot of pickled veggies, yesterday I put up cukes (fermented).
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Higgs Boson wrote:

I have never had to resort to that, normally you can harvest them with a knife.
D
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