Chilli’rrific News

Hmmm this post title sounded better than it looks……Anyway I’m very excited because all my chilli plants made in through the Melbourne winter.  (For a couple of them it was their second winter.)  YAY!!!!  What is even more exciting is that I also have my first chilli of the season – a Birds Eye.  It may be small but to me it looks perfect.

It interesting that all my plants survived, we didn’t have a particularly cold winter but it didn’t feel particularly warm either.  I think chillies must be more cold tolerant than I thought.  I don’t protect the chillis at all, but then we don’t get frost either.  I found that the ones that are at the best stage now – ie lots of nice new growth and flower buds are all ones that I pruned in July.  Interestingly though I also have 2 capsicums (bell peppers) that seem to have made it through winter and the one of these thats doing better is the one I didn’t prune.  It might just be a co-incidence though….

I’m not sure what the below chilli varieties are.  Never again will I buy a seed mix as I am finding it very irritating not knowing what is what so to speak.  Its bad enough my toddler taking the labels out of things but not knowing in the first place I find even worse…..control freak anyone???  When they fruit I will spend a bit of time trying to identify them.


I do know what this next one is though.  In Australia this goes by the name of Scotch Bonnet- it isn’t the same as what I knew of as Scotch Bonnet in the UK.  There I used to buy the chillies from a West Indian grocer and they were a slightly different shape and considerably hotter.  I have yet to find that particular variety in Melbourne though.

My neighbour has a few plants of something very similar to this one growing in his front garden and they have been there the four years we’ve lived here so I think the variety must be reasonably long lived.  My understanding is that there is quite a bit of variation in the longevity of the different chilli varieties but all are perennial (unless a particularly cold climate kills them off that is….).

I have also sown chilli seed – irrationally it is more Hot chilli mix – it will be interesting to compare the yields between the different plants.  At the moment all my chillies are in pots but I’m just thinking about the merits of adding more edibles to my (currently mainly ornamental natives) front garden.  Food for thought – and hot food at that!

This entry was posted in Autumn Harvesting, Chillies, Capsicum & Eggplant, Spring Harvesting, Spring Planting, Summer Harvesting and tagged . Bookmark the permalink.

9 Responses to Chilli’rrific News

  1. Thanks for visiting my blog and commenting – It’s good to hear from new people.

    I do hope our winter isn’t as bad as last year – even in one of our best winters I doubt that bell peppers would survive!

    • Liz says:

      Thanks Sue, I spent quite awhile in the UK and I have relatives there- my partner’s English and I remember a lot of conversations about snow last year but then I think that is unusually bad isn’t it? The bell peppers only just make it here – I only tried with a couple of plants and one looks good, the other less so and our min temperatures never go below about 2 or 3 degrees. I enjoy your blog. Thankyou for visiting mine.

  2. JohannaGGG says:

    Yay for the first chili! Chilli peppers look so gorgeous with their bright red colours (green ones don’t stand out so much) – I have wondered about growing them in pots but never got around to it – thought I did have some of a friends harvest a year or two back that was impressive

  3. Diana says:

    Yeah! exciting that all of them survived and you have plenty to harvest this spring.

    • Liz says:

      Yes I hope so – I can see lots of little buds – that first one I harvested had absolutely no heat to it at all so hopefully we get some warm whether to hotten them up too.

  4. Louise says:

    Hi Liz,
    I’m currently nursing a couple of potted chilli plants through winter on my Brunswick balcony. I was going to pull them out until I read your blog and saw that they can go another season. They are a bit straggly as I never pruned them, do you recommend a good prune for chilli plants ahead of spring, or if I raise more seedlings, while they’re growing?

    • Liz says:

      No I wouldn’t prune them – I’ve found they grow more vigorously in Spring if you just leave them. I only prune mine in about November when I can see where the new growth has set.

  5. kper says:

    Hi Liz,
    My chilli plants, twenty two of them, all in pots and in small greenhouse survived Melbourne’s record cold winter. However I am now facing massive gnat infestation. What do I do? I have tried all the usual advise available on the internet, did not work. Even if change the whole soil, at the risk of killing my plants, larvae can still survive. Need some help please.

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