Thursday, November 15, 2012
Peppers, Chillis, Capsicums. Can I eat them?
January and February can be very dire months in the nursery. Gardeners go off on holiday or it just gets too hot for gardening. Our season is on the turn too: "should I plant Petunias or Pansies?" "Can I plant Tomatoes or should we start our Broccoli?"
One bright spot over the past few years has been Fruiting Peppers. I get tangled in knots over what to call them: Peppers, Chillis, Capsicums? Peppers seams to be a good catch all. We started with Ornamental Chillis. True Ornamentals have been bred with the sole aim of looking great in pots. The fruit stands up over the foliage, often in tightly clenched bunches. The plant's growth habit is deliberately tight and compact so they can be used as table centre pieces and the like. Flavour? Pah, who cares. I'm very confident that none of our Ornamental Chillis will poison you, but I'm not about to eat them either... there are better options.
Culinary Peppers. We like to think the term Culinary is our own, but who knows? It is certainly more accurate than Edible (which makes the alternatives sound dangerous) and I think it just sounds more appetizing. We have sourced 8 Chillis that combine Chilli flavour and heat with "presentable" behaviour in small pots. I would personally prefer to grow them in a 200mm pot but the market appears to prefer the 140mm we are using. The Culinary Pepper varieties are best grown on in garden beds or pots 300mm or larger.
Follow the links to brochures detailing our ranges of Chillis and Peppers. They will be available in quality nurseries through January and February, I will send out a list of Garden Centres carrying these plants early in the new year.