I was wondering - is there such a thing as heirloom chilis or peppers? If
so, where can I find seeds for these varieties? I have a pretty small
garden (about 4 x 4, and that includes the air conditioning unit) so I try
to restrict my edibles to new or unusual varieties. I live in zone 3b/4 in
Thanks for any information.
There certainly are!
for starters, try www.seedsavers.org
The annual yearbook for members has a zillion peppers, but they have a
"public" catalog with quite a bit of stuff. You might do well to try
container gardening, both to get a jump on the season and to keep things
Gary Woods AKA K2AHC- PGP key on request, or at home.earthlink.net/~garygarlic
Zone 5/6 in upstate New York, 1420' elevation. NY WO G
There are many heirloom peppers. My only concern with you is your location.
As far north as you are, you might have problems getting them from seed to
ripe peppers in a short growing season. Hot peppers like hot weather. If
you want to do some research and learn a great deal about the "travels" of
peppers I seriously suggest you do a google search for "Jean Andrews
capsicum". You will find a reference to a book she wrote entitled
"Peppers: The Domesticated Capsicum".
I have that book and it's amazing. Complete with full page color plates of
the plants in fruit showing leaf size, shape and the peppers, and how
peppers made it around the world via old world trade routes. In addition,
the google search will reveal another book by her entitled "The Pepper
Lady's Pocket Pepper Primer". I don't have it, but I bet it's good. I've
met Jean and she knows her peppers! If you're interested, I grow lots of
peppers including chili pequin, which are also sometimes referred to as bird
peppers. They are about as large as a pencil eraser, but pack quite a
punch. Sun dried they are my favorite when crushed and sprinkled on pizza.
I have LOTS of them dried. If you want, I would be more than willing to
send you a small handful. Try them on pizza and see if you can grow some.
Let me know if you're interested.
There are several places to buy heirloom seeds. First is Seed Savers in Iowa
http://www.seedsavers.org/ and here in Missouri is Baker Creek Seed Company
http://www.rareseeds.com /. Both of these are premier for finding Heirloom
Michael Missouri Master Gardner
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