Prepare the ground with a tiller or turning fork. Work a 3- to 5-inch layer of compost or other organic matter into the soil to a depth of 8 of 10 inches. Using your trowel, dig a planting hole just deep enough to cover the root-ball of the plant. Space holes 18 inches apart for most peppers; some of the larger bells may need 24 inches.
Gently remove the plant by slipping the plastic container from the root-ball. Don’t tug on the plant stem, or you may tear it from the roots. If the roots are growing out of holes in the bottom of the pot, tear or cut them away and squeeze and twist the pot to remove it from the roots. If roots are matted, use your fingertips to gently break them apart, or they may grow in circles and stunt the plant.
If your plant is in a Bonnie peat pot, gently tear away the bottom of the pot so that the roots will be in direct contact with the soil. Also peel back the top rim of the peat pot so that there is nothing to stick up above the ground after planting .
Set the plant in the hole so that the top of the root-ball is level with the ground surface. Do not plant deeply like tomatoes, or the plants may rot.
Sprinkle fertilizer around the plant and in the soil that will go back into the hole. Use an organic fertilizer or a timed-release product, which is more expensive but lasts longer and stays in place. Apply the amount recommended on the fertilizer label.
Backfill the hole. When you are done, gently pat the soil around the roots to avoid air pockets, and water thoroughly. This is very important to help settle the soil and start the plant.
Mulch with pine needles, straw, or compost to help keep moisture in the soil and prevent weeds.