July 31, 2008

Grow your own Chilies 2008

Week commencing 28 July 2008:
Good news and bad news.

The good news is the Cheyenne chillies are growing thick and fast and we'll be able to harvest the little beauties soon.
 The bad news is the Apache plant is pretty much dead, the most likely culprit being over-watering - Steve's mum waters the plants too and sometimes she does it when I've already done it! Nevermind, we're going to have more Cheyenne chillies than we can handle so I'll have to make some chilli flakes to store them.

Week commencing 23 June 2008:
There are loads of little fruits now and still some flowers. The fruits have started to transform into chillies so hopefully it won't be long until they're red and ripe.

I've read that I should mist the foliage regularly with tepid water to discourage red spider mite and to help flower set and subsequently cropping, so that's the next job to do!

Week commencing 26 May 2008:
The first fruit has grown! This is on the Cheyenne plant which is doing better than the Apache. We think I might have stunted the Apache's growth with my home-made plastic bottle cloche! I only used it for a few days but took it off as it didn't seem to be doing the plant any favours.

Week commencing 28 April 2008:
This week we bought some new chilli plants, an Apache and a Cheyenne. We grew a load of different chillies last year (Jalapenos, Hungarian Hot, Anaheim) but only the Apache's were successful and we got a bumper crop of small fiery red and green chillies. After picking them I left them to naturally dry out for a few days before properly drying them in the oven on the lowest temperature and whizzing up in a mini-chopper to make chilli flakes. I've kept them stored in an old jam jar since late last year and used them alot to spice up stir-fries and anything else that could use a kick!
The Cheyenne should yield medium-sized orange chillies and is apparently a good companion to the Apache (I'll admit I didn't know that when we bought them, it was just good luck!).


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