Also known as capsicum and chillies, peppers originated in South America. Available in a variety of colors peppers are very high in vitamin C and other antioxidants.
Peppers love hot weather so if you want to grow them in cooler areas you will have to start them indoors to protect them from frost. Once the seedlings are advanced they can be planed outside but make sure you us biodegradable pots as peppers are suspect to transplant shock. Choose a warm and sunny spot and add dolomite to the soil.
Harvest your peppers regularly, this will improve growth of the bush and fruit, it will also improve air circulation around the plant, which is very important is peppers can easily succumb to molds in humid areas. When removing the peppers from the plant use secateurs to prevent damage. If you are thinking of saving some of your pepper's seeds for next season you may be in for a surprise. Capsicums cross very easily and the genes for hot flavors are dominant, be warned. The green peppers found in supermarkets are really just unripe red peppers that will turn red if left to mature.
Following are some of the most popular types of peppers;
Bullshorn, this pepper loved by Italians and used especially for frying.
Alma Paprika, Hungarians dry this pepper, grind it into the famous spice paprika and generously used in many dishes, including their authentic goulash.
Jalapeno, named after Jalapa in Mexico these chillies have a bite and are mostly chopped up into salsas and stews.
Habanero, named after Havana in Cuba these chillies are 30 times hotter than Jalapeno but blends beautifully with tomatoes, best used in oils and sauces.
Cayenne chillies is hotter than Jalapeno but milder than Habanero and traditionally dried and powdered as Cayenne pepper.