Thursday, August 19, 2010
Fruiting Scotch Bonnet hot pepper started from seed, saved out of a grocery store pepper, two years ago.
I am delighted to see that you have so fully recovered from what must have been a difficult winter.
"The aphids were bad. Sometimes I didn't think I'd make it."
You and me both. I didn't think the occasional soap lather and random aphid squishing was going to be sufficient to lower their populations.
"Sometimes it felt like you were giving up on me."
Oh, you mean sticking you in the north facing window? I had to quarantine you from the other peppers. And there was that time that I transplanted that ladybug onto your stem.
"The cat ate it."
Well, you were a sorry sight but I never did the dreaded pot dump.
"Please, I can't even think of it."
Instead I refreshed your soil with a bit of compost.
"Sometimes you didn't water me for more than a week."
I was trying to dehydrate the aphids...
Aphid ridden pepper.
Well, that's all water under the bridge now. Look at you, flush with gorgeous green leaves and ripening fruit. All that in 4 hours of sun. I'm impressed.
"The other hot peppers are in full sun."
I didn't want to burn your shade grown leaves. Besides, I was curious about how well you would perform and this way. It will be less of a shock when I bring you in for the winter.
"You're keeping me?"
Are you kidding? Look at you.
"So you only keep the good looking ones."
You are a plant. An experiment at that. How would I know that a grocery store bought Scotch Bonnet would produce such a wonderful specimen, tolerant to shade, drought and aphid pressure.
"I don't want to answer."
My point is just Thank you. I'll be enjoying the fruits of your labour and saving more seed.
"At least my children will live on."
This year you will have the honour of sitting in the south facing window. You earned it.
"Those other peppers are a bit spotty. I think I'll stick to my quarantine."
You know, you're right. Maybe it's time I do some thinning.
That's a large watering can for scale.
Read more on Overwintering Hot Peppers or skim the quicky version below:
1. Put in pot of enriched soil at the end of summer and reverse harden off - soften off?
2. Clean off any aphids or other bugs
3. Take in before first frost.
4. Keep in a sunny window and water only when needed.
5. Control soft bodied pests with a diluted soap solution. Or squish
6. They will often die back as days shorten but should recover as days lengthen
7. Repot or replant after last frost.