Sunday, 29 July 2012

Red Hot Chilli Peppers

For the avoidance of doubt this post is not about an American rock band. Observant readers will of course have known this from the spelling of, "chilli." Rather it is about the fruiting vegetable.

Chilli Pepper Plant 28th July 2012

Chilli Pepper 28th July 2012

I sowed the seeds in a heated propagator on 28th February. Germination took seven days and I was able to pot on the seedlings into three inch pots after a further three weeks. When the plants had grown to approximately six inches in height I planted then out in ten inch rings sunk into the greenhouse border. The plants are now some thirty inches tall and the chillies are forming well. I have placed an inverted wigwam of short bamboo canes around each plant with twine tied around the canes at various heights so as to give support for the branches of the plants as the fruit develops. They are of course still green but I am confident that there is enough growing weather left for them to turn red. They can of course be used in the kitchen whether green or red. I have found that they freeze well so you are not faced with an usable glut.

Even within the one variety there can be a very big difference between the ,"hotness" of one chilli over another. It is the chemical compound capasaicin in the fruit which produces the heat sensation. Traditionally the Scoville Heat Scale has been used to measure the hotness of chillies. This test was developed in 1912 by a Wilbur Scoville.

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