Monday, 15 August 2016

Overwintering Chillies......

I read last year somewhere that chilli pepper plants are actually perennials, although very few people tend to treat them as such, instead sowing fresh seed every spring and discarding the plants in the autumn after fruiting.

So I thought I'd try an experiment ...

After a very poor crop last year from several plants, their first year, I brought the healthiest specimen indoors and overwintered it on the workshop windowsill.

With a very occasional watering, it survived the winter OK but looked a bit sick and bedraggled in the spring, so I didn't hold out too much hope.  Still, I trimmed it up and potted it on.

And look at it now after a summer in the greenhouse !    Hopefully there's still enough time for the peppers to ripen properly because they're supposed to produce a beautiful multicolour display.

from seed sown in 2015....

In the spring, I also sowed seeds for a couple of more plants, but only one has survived and grown very slowly.   

However, I resisted the temptation to bin it earlier in the summer, and it's looking very healthy now.  We'll get nothing from it this year, but both plants will be brought back into the house for the winter.

sown this spring....

The seeds were bought from Wilko in the early spring of 2015, the packet label simply calling them 'Patio Sizzlers'.

I don't know if all other chillies are the same, but if you've grown them from seed this year it's worth a try to get a headstart for next year.

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