OT – The return of the Chillies

It’s that time of year again and hopefully I will have a better year than last for my chilli crop.

I’m not really sure what went wrong but for some reason, after potting the germinated seedlings on, they grew a little bit and then just sort of stopped growing… They didn’t die, but just didn’t any bigger. So last year I didn’t really get a harvest at all.

Chilli Choices

Chilli Choices

Anyway. It’s a new year and I have several new varieties to try so today I have selected eight and set them off to germinate in the airing cupboard.

My choices for this year are (from top left clockwise): The Black Naga, The Dorset Naga, Goat Horn, Lemon Drop, Aji Crystal, Caribbean Red Hot, Naga Jolokia, Bangalore Tornado.

All of these are what most people would call very hot chillies. However the three Naga varieties should all be outrageously hot.

Seeds prepared for germination

Seeds prepared for germination

I’ve used my usual method of germination which I find is fast and more reliable compared to more traditional techniques. I place a couple of sheets of unbleached, recycled toilet paper (clean of course) into the bottom of some plastic takeaway containers. I get the paper nice and wet with some luke-warm water then gently place the seeds on top of the damp paper. I can easily get two varieties in one box. Then I put the lid on (this helps to keep the moisture in the box and stop them drying out) and stick them in the airing cupboard. I find germination usually takes place within a week to 10 days and then as soon as they sprout I move the seedlings into small pots with decent potting compost. Here’s some I prepared earlier :-)

Incidentally, I’ve recently discovered that a mate in my local pub also “likes it hot” and we have decided to hold a Naga eating challenge planned for later this year. We’ll probably try and record it and put it on Youtube.

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