Growing Hot Peppers – Heat Up the Summer

By July 7, 2019Blog Post
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Growing Hot Peppers

By Jodi Torpey

I’ve never met a pepper I didn’t like. Hot, sweet, fried or dried, I’m crazy about them all. That’s why I plant at least a dozen different pepper varieties in my garden every season. There will always be several jalapeno plants, but each year I enjoy adding new-to-me varieties. I’ve been known to pick a pepper plant just so I could grow enough chiles to prepare a single recipe. Holy Mole!

I’m drawn to peppers because they’re versatile in the kitchen and grow in so many different sizes, shapes and colors. There are baby bell peppers, slender green Thai chiles, long red paprika peppers and even black edible ornamentals.

Then, of course, there’s the thrill of the unknown when taking that first tantalizing bite.

A Bit about Peppers

It’s believed all peppers originated in Central and South America, and that Spanish explorers introduced them to South Asia. Peppers are known around the globe for their benefits in recipes, as well as their medical superpowers.

For example, cayenne peppers are valued for their use as a spice, but also for their health properties. Cayenne can improve circulation, reduce arthritis pain and serve as a decongestant.

The secret ingredient is the same one that causes intense pepper pain when taking a bite of a hot chile pepper. Capsaicin can stimulate the pain receptors in your mouth, but it can also relieve discomfort by suppressing the intensity of pain signals from the affected nerves to the brain.

Because capsaicin is manufactured in the pepper’s ribs, you can put out some of the fire by removing the pepper’s seeds and veins before eating.

Growing Peppers

Peppers are one of the easiest plants to grow, even for beginning gardeners. Chile peppers grow best in full sun and a rich, well-drained soil. All it takes to grow a good crop is hot weather, moist soil and keeping plants fed every few weeks through the season.

Peppers are ready to eat whenever they reach their preferred size, although if left on the plant they’ll ripen to brilliant—and delicious—little gems


Author Nicks

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