Pepper Varieties

Suggested Pepper Cultivars for Home Growers

For culinary and gastronomical purposes peppers are generally grouped into two categories, Sweet and Hot peppers.

Growing varying varieties of peppers together is fine. Unlike some vegetable varieties, such as corn, it will not effect the flavor or appearance of the pepper itself.

Although cross pollination is a possibility, so long as you are not seed saving, this shouldn't be an issue.

Hot Peppers

The intensity of hot peppers is measured on the Scoville Scale, a system of Heat and spicyness measurement of foods. Reported in Heat Units referred to as "SHU". The higher a peppers number on the scoville scale the more intense the flavor and heat.

The Following is a short list of my personal favorites. For an expanded list of hot Pepper varieties see Cayenne Dianne - Big List of Hot Peppers

Jalapeno Peppers [2,500 to 10,000 SHU]- There are many varieties of Jalapeno, Super hot melt your teeth varieties, as well as the more mild and mellow varieties.

Jalapenos are probably the most popular hot peppers. Most growers pick them when they are a dark green and 2 to 3 inches in length. If left on the plant, they turn a fiery red.

Tabasco Peppers [30,000 - 50,000 SHU] Small, slim and really hot. Tabasco peppers are a variety of Chili Pepper. Plants grow up to four feet tall. As the 1 - 2 inch fruits ripen, they turn green to orange then red. Tabascos rate from 30,000 to 50,000 on the Scoville scale.

Poblano Peppers [1,000 - 2,000 SHU] are on the mild side. And very tasty. They are a primary ingredient in many Mexican and Southwestern dishes. Mature fruit measures 6 inches long and 3 inches wide, they are reddish-brown when ripe.

Chile Pepper BookComplete Chile Pepper Book

Habanero Hot Peppers [100,000 - 350,000] are Very hot peppers. Some say it is the hottest pepper you can grow, but I've tasted some that may be hotter . Slightly wrinkled fruit grows one inch long, turning from light green to a fiery orange when ripe.

Red Savina Habaneros reach up to 570,000 SHU on the scoville scale.

Thai Pepper [50,000 - 100,000 SHU] Not quite as hot as Habanero but close. Also grown as an ornamental plant, it is attractive and useful. can be grown indoors , on a patio, or in a garden.

Cayenne Peppers [30,000 - 50,000 SHU] will have you feeling hot hot hot. Fruit grows approximately five inches long, starting as a deep green and turning to a brilliant red.

Anaheim Chilli [500 to 2500 SHU] - Mild Chili , wouldn't recommend eating it raw , but as hot peppers go it's a hand grenade compared to the Atomic Bomb of Habanero. Has a good flavor. 6 to 8 inch fruit turns from dark green to fire engine red when ripe. Popular for drying.

Serrano Chilli Peppers [6,000-23,000 SHU] Very Hot. Plants produce a bounty of small fruits, turning from dark green to a crimson red.

Hungarian Wax [1,000 to 15,000 SHU] is a Medium hot pepper . Popular for pickling. It is good raw and cooked. 5 to 8 inch long fruit has a smooth skin. They turn from bright yellow to red when fully ripe.

Sweet Peppers

Sweet Banana Peppers grow 6 to 7 inches and are generally a pale yellow when ripe, some varieties vary in color.

Lady Bell Sweet Pepper - Produces large, juicy fruit right up through early Autumn. Slightly larger than California Wonder Sweet Peppers. California Wonder and Lady Bell are the 2 most common and popular home grow varieties.

California Wonder - produces more pepper than Lady Bell, only a tad smaller.

Mini Bell Pepper - A relatively new variety, generally comes in a "blend" with a mix of assorted colors. The plants grow approximately 2 feet tall.

Cubanelle - Is a large sweet pepper about 6 inches in length ,good for frying. Yellowish-green, some variations turn red when fully ripe. Produces a continuous supply of peppers all season long.

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