The Ripening

Whilst I grow some types of veg some year, and some types of veg another, I have been growing chillies routinely for years.  I know, I know they are fruits, let's not get trapped into that spiral of discussion, but for my growing thoughts they are factored into my veg seed/plug buying considerations.

I often grow different chilli varieties as it usually depends on what is available to buy as plug plants.  I have grown chillies from seed but I find that buying plugs is far more reliable.  This year I grew six plants: 3 x Hot Fajita and 3 x Medina bought from Thompson and Morgan.  They arrived in late April; I potted them up quickly and potted them on a couple of times in some peat-free compost.

They started to produce quite quickly.  I grow them in the greenhouse and by early August the fruits were ripening.  Every few days I would pick some more as keeping picking them keeps them producing more and encourages the ones on the plant to ripen as well.
By mid October I knew I was not going to have many more ripen whilst on the plant.  I decided it was time to pick the last few.  My routine with chillies is to pick them, place them in a resealable freezer bag and freeze them immediately.  When I want to use one or two I open the bag, take what I need: wash cut and cook them from frozen.  This works well.  I sometimes put a whole chilli, not chopped when cooking a joint of meat.  It gives an underlying level of heat that is subtle but useful.

When I made this last picking I wondered if I could finish ripening them on the window sill.  I asked on X/Twitter and the general opinion was yes, this would work.
So onto the windowsill the went, with the begonia cutting in a glass that is rooting well and the echium seedling.  You can see a few were already close to getting ripe, they just needed a turn or two.
A few days later and there is definite progress.  

Another few days and they are really doing well.  Some have moved on into the freezer bag of happiness and the rest are getting a little less plump looking, a little withered.
and then I got to the final four.  They were a little puckered and I decided to pop them all into the bag.  I usually wait until they are red but green chillies are completely edible.  It is not that I am  heat-seeker either.  I do not like really hot chillies, I want ones that add flavor and a modicom of heat.
I have a good harvest of chillies in the freezer, that will see me through nicely until next year's chillies are producing I am sure.  

Which ones will I grow next year I hear you say?  I don't know yet but I am looking forward to that decision soon.

Take care and be kind.

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  1. Nice harvest. I've never tried to grow chilies; bell peppers, but not chilies. We do eat them, but I don't have enough sun for them in my current garden. Lucky you to have so many for your winter meals.


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