A few years ago I tried growing some chilli seeds. They were put in a small planter box and quickly sprouted. One day after getting home from work after a particularly hot day, I found them all burned to a crisp.
For the next attempt, I was not going to make the same mistake and would grow them indoors.
The key with chilli seeds appears to be keeping them warm. The best method is with a heat mat, but others have also suggested the top of the fridge can work also.
I soaked the seeds overnight in water to soften them up before planting
For the planting medium, I was looking for just some sort of soil. However, at the hardware store, I found these Peat Pellets. They were quite cool, you pour boiling water over these compacted pellets and they expand around 4x the size.
After letting them cool, the seeds were planted, then it was a case of waiting.
Around 7 days later, the first shoots started to appear. Two weeks, almost all had sprouted and were going great.
This is where it all started going wrong. The sprouts stopped growing, followed by the leaves shrivelling up, the sprout falling over and dying.
One after the other, after around 20 sprouts I lost nearly all of them.
I went on-line and started asking for tips. It seemed to be not enough water, too much water, too much sun, or not enough sun. So, it could be anything.
I went through numerous YouTube videos on growing Chilli’s when one talked about the Jiffy Pellets. Sorry I forgot the link of the video, but after letting the pellets expand he squeezed out the water and said they hold a lot of water.
It then hit me. I picked up one of my pellets which looked dry on top, and squeezed it. Water ran out. They were drowning.
For all the still alive sprouts, I squeezed every puck carefully to not damage the plants and also moved them to a more sunny position.
A few days after, another sprout died. At this point, I assume I had been wrong. However, the ones that did survive started growing again.