growing chile peppers

A Bounty of Peppers!

I’ve got a bounty of peppers now, of bell, sweet and hot.  The peppers are in full production mode!  I took a quick break to walk out to the garden for a harvest.

Bell, Sweet and Hot Peppers (Click for larger image)

Bell, Sweet and Hot Peppers (Click for larger image)

Once I got the peppers inside and on the counter, I thought they looked really pretty, so I took a photo.  And keep in mind, this isn’t all of the peppers — many have already found their way into our tummies.  Not to mention there are a ton still on the plants!

In the photo I have Park’s Sweet Banana, Park’s Sweet Pickle, Mini-Belle (in purple and red), Redskin (mostly green), a name-unknown bell and a Cambuci (very hot!).  I’m waiting to taste the Cambuci before writing up a post on it, but it’s a really pretty plant and pepper.

A bounty of peppers indeed!

Still Planting Peppers

I’ve got another round of peppers to plant this weekend.  Here in Florida, there’s still plenty of time to get in a second crop.  So what’s on my agenda?  Here’s what I have in mind, but it’s always subject to change.

  • Datil
  • Aurora
  • Purple Jalapeno
  • Jaloro (yellow jalapeno)
  • Redskin (again — this is one nice bell pepper!)
  • Starburst (ornamental pepper)
  • Giant Anconcagua (again — absolutely huge sweet peppers!)

I might also go with another round of Pretty Purple Pepper and one of the Thai Hot varieties.  I’m also debating adding a larger bell pepper to the list, or maybe Mohawk (the companion to Redskin).

So if you live in a climate where it’s warm (days at least in the 70’s) on up through October or November, come on and plant some more seeds!  Or at least see if there are any plants for sale available nearby.

And for the rest of you who already have peppers out in the garden — may you have a bounty of peppers as well!

Pretty Purple Pepper in the Garden

Pretty Purple Pepper is not only a variety name, but an accurate description of the plant and its fruit!  Let’s talk a little about growing this wonderful pepper variety in the garden.

How Does it Look?

Pretty Purple PepperIt’s really hard to capture with a photo how lovely both the plant and the peppers are!  The stems are a deep purple-maroon color, and the leaves have a violet sheen to them (which I can’t seem to capture).  And the peppers — they are a gorgeous, glowing purple.

This pepper has been quite hardy in my garden.  It’s faced a near-freeze with grace, and is thriving in a 3-gallon container.  I drop by it at least once a day because it’s a feast for my eyes.

(You can click on the photo for a larger image.)

Germinating the Seeds

I find that germinating seeds for this pepper to be easy.  Even in a cooler temperature than normal, the plant came up within 10 days.  I imagine that if I used a heat mat, that would shorten to 5-7 days.

I germinated this particular plant at cooler-than-normal temperatures as an experiment.  Pretty Purple Pepper sprouted well, but the other seeds had a hard time, and most didn’t germinate at all.

(Here’s more information about germinating hot pepper seeds, if you need a few tips.)

Container Growing

I mentioned that I am currently growing this plant in a 3-gallon container, and it is thriving.  While it would do better in the ground, it’s quite suitable for a lovely container plant on a patio.  Not only is the plant pleasing to look at but it also has purple-and-white flowers.  When the plant has flowers and peppers at the same time, it’s a sight to behold!

Other Hints for Pretty Purple Pepper

As I mentioned, this plant has had some tough conditions.  Not only has it faced temperatures in the 30’s, but it’s also faced extended periods of high winds.  The weather has been dry, and sometimes the soil isn’t as damp as I’m sure the plant would like.  Through all this, Pretty Purple Pepper has sailed on without a problem.

What About Eating Them?

You can certainly eat these peppers, but they are quite hot — my guess is around 40,000 Scoville Units.  I don’t eat a lot of them, because they are so lovely on the plant.  But I reccomend them  in stir-fries and also for a vinegar pepper.  And although I haven’t tried them as such, I imagine they would be good pickled.

I like Pretty Purple Pepper, and it has an ongoing spot in my garden.  I hope you like it too!
Pretty Purple Pepper

Update

Here’s another photo just a couple weeks later of the same plant!