Little chili pepper plants – ornamental or edible or both?


Low Altitude

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I picked up these three little fellas almost a week ago at the Saturday market. Got them home and someone asked me whether they were edible or ornamental. What do I know? If i knew there was a difference, I would have asked the seller. I figured I could have my chili plants and eact them too.... <g>... sorry...

What do i have here, folks?

Also, you will see that one is flourishing and the other two look like they will die soon. When i got them home, I put a stick moisture meter in the soil of each one. One was 2/4, one was 3/4 and one was 4/4, 4 being 'saturated'. I dunked all three and put them on the south-facing windowsill.

For obvious reasons, I now **suspect** that these things (A) like somewhat dry roots and (B) don't like direct sun. Am I wrong? I'm guessing that the one that is thriving was the one that was fairly dry when i got it.

What do you think?
 

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I picked up these three little fellas almost a week ago at the Saturday market. Got them home and someone asked me whether they were edible or ornamental. What do I know? If i knew there was a difference, I would have asked the seller. I figured I could have my chili plants and eact them too.... <g>... sorry...

What do i have here, folks?

Also, you will see that one is flourishing and the other two look like they will die soon. When i got them home, I put a stick moisture meter in the soil of each one. One was 2/4, one was 3/4 and one was 4/4, 4 being 'saturated'. I dunked all three and put them on the south-facing windowsill.

For obvious reasons, I now **suspect** that these things (A) like somewhat dry roots and (B) don't like direct sun. Am I wrong? I'm guessing that the one that is thriving was the one that was fairly dry when i got it.

What do you think?
ALL ornamental peppers can be eaten. The only thing is that some of them are not only very hot but bitter also. These are the non-edible ones. Many of the others are just HOT. A few varieties are good. You will just have to eat them and see. All of yours need to be repotted....NOW. That and they have been watered to often. You cannot overwater a plant but you can and will kill a plant by watering too often. All three of yours seem to be ornamentals. Peppers like all of the sun you can give them. As far as moisture goes they like it just barely damp. The main thing now is to repot into a larger container with a good potting mix. Do not fertilize until they regain their health and then use an organic liquid like HastaGro if they are to be kept in containers. Fertilize at 1/2 the rate on the directions. The reason for the 1/2 rate is that you want peppers instead of foliage and also fertilize every time you water.
 

Low Altitude

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Chuck,

Thank you so much.

Great: soil barely damp, all the sun they can get. Understand the rationale for going easy on the fertilizer – thanks.

I will re-pot now. What counts as a good potting mix? Mix in some perlite and/or sand?
 
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Chuck,

Thank you so much.

Great: soil barely damp, all the sun they can get. Understand the rationale for going easy on the fertilizer – thanks.

I will re-pot now. What counts as a good potting mix? Mix in some perlite and/or sand?
A good potting soil costs about $15 for 40 lbs. Just don't buy that Miracle Gro garbage or anything from Scotts. Make sure it says organic
 

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OK great. Will look for a potting soil that's not Miracle-Gro or from Scotts. Whatever that is and whoever that is.

Will keep my eyes out for something that's neither.

But aside from that, would you advocate mixing in perlite and/or sand? What kind of humus content? What proportions? Just trying to understand what the mix of the soil should be.

Thanks man.
 
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OK great. Will look for a potting soil that's not Miracle-Gro or from Scotts. Whatever that is and whoever that is.

Will keep my eyes out for something that's neither.

But aside from that, would you advocate mixing in perlite and/or sand? What kind of humus content? What proportions? Just trying to understand what the mix of the soil should be.

Thanks man.
You are trying to make a simple effort difficult. A good potting mix doesn't need anything except to be placed in a container and a plant added. And if the plant old enough some fertilizer.

I think you are concerned over a completely different issue, homemade compost, which sometimes MIGHT need a little sand or perlite or vermiculite or something to give it a perfect texture.
 
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Low Altitude

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Good to know, Chuck, thanks.

I was too late to save the two bedraggled pepper plants even with repotting, but the third one is doing fine. You were absolutely right – I was astonished to see that all the plants were completely rootbound. I was amazed how much root there was for such small plants.

You'll notice also fron the attached photo that even on the plant that survived, the mature peppers shrivelled. A friend suggests, sensibly enough, that i was underwatering. After another week, i think she's right. It seems that these plants are much thirstier than most of the other houseplants here. I'm going to have to keep the soil as wet as possible without risking root rot.

The good news (I hope it's good news) is that the survivor is flowering!

IMG_3233.JPG
 

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Good to know, Chuck, thanks.

I was too late to save the two bedraggled pepper plants even with repotting, but the third one is doing fine. You were absolutely right – I was astonished to see that all the plants were completely rootbound. I was amazed how much root there was for such small plants.

You'll notice also fron the attached photo that even on the plant that survived, the mature peppers shrivelled. A friend suggests, sensibly enough, that i was underwatering. After another week, i think she's right. It seems that these plants are much thirstier than most of the other houseplants here. I'm going to have to keep the soil as wet as possible without risking root rot.

The good news (I hope it's good news) is that the survivor is flowering!

View attachment 28136

The crinkly chillis seem to have an attitude! LOL! Hope you keep a seed or two for germination!
 

Low Altitude

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The crinkly chillis seem to have an attitude! LOL! Hope you keep a seed or two for germination!

That's a great idea. I took the fruit off the plants that died, but honestly, they are prettier than they are tasty . I think I will de-seed them and plant the seeds!
 

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@Low Attitude I sometimes laughed at my stupidity, buying galia melon seeds .. Why not just keep the seeds from a galia melon?

One year, I bought some melon seeds and they actually grew, but the melons were full of prickly points and tasted bland. Out they went and yet this year, the horror came back again. Quickly, I despatched the whole thing to compost bin whilst my pied del selno melon came to nothing. Two plants with some flowers which came to nothing. I wish I had planted them out where that dreaded melon plant was ...
 
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Good to know, Chuck, thanks.

I was too late to save the two bedraggled pepper plants even with repotting, but the third one is doing fine. You were absolutely right – I was astonished to see that all the plants were completely rootbound. I was amazed how much root there was for such small plants.

You'll notice also fron the attached photo that even on the plant that survived, the mature peppers shrivelled. A friend suggests, sensibly enough, that i was underwatering. After another week, i think she's right. It seems that these plants are much thirstier than most of the other houseplants here. I'm going to have to keep the soil as wet as possible without risking root rot.

The good news (I hope it's good news) is that the survivor is flowering!

View attachment 28136
All mature peppers will shrivel if they stay on the plant long enough. DO NOT WATER MORE THAN YOUR ARE DOING NOW. If underwatered the plant will look droopy and then the leaf tips and edges will turn brown and crispy. The soil should be slightly damp to moist at the root system. When you water, water slowly and completely saturate the soil. Then in 6-10 days check and see if it needs watering again. Stick your finger into the soil 2 or 3 inches deep. If your finger is even slightly damp the plant does NOT need watering. Also many people will stress peppers and tomatoes by with holding water until the plant is slightly wilted in the early morning. This will help in production. Don't worry. Your plant will not fall over dead if it wilts. Oh, I almost forgot. Remove the shrivelled peppers and either hang and dry them more or grind them up into flakes. They appear to be edible peppers so try one to find out.
 
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Low Altitude

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@Low Attitude I sometimes laughed at my stupidity, buying galia melon seeds .. Why not just keep the seeds from a galia melon?

One year, I bought some melon seeds and they actually grew, but the melons were full of prickly points and tasted bland. Out they went and yet this year, the horror came back again. Quickly, I despatched the whole thing to compost bin whilst my pied del selno melon came to nothing. Two plants with some flowers which came to nothing. I wish I had planted them out where that dreaded melon plant was ...

How funny. Though at the risk of straying too far off-topic, I painstakingly harvested the tiny, tiny seeds off my treasured and beautiful false gloxinia Sinningia speciosa, which resolutely refuses to self-propagate. I put down about 50 seeds. Precisely one germinated, sent out two minute leaves about 1mm across, then died. Sis suggests not burying the seeds, just letting them sit on damp earth. But they are so tiny and look so vulnerable. May it's time to remind myself how to take cuttings and try that way....
 

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All mature peppers will shrivel if they stay on the plant long enough. DO NOT WATER MORE THAN YOUR ARE DOING NOW. If underwatered the plant will look droopy and then the leaf tips and edges will turn brown and crispy. The soil should be slightly damp to moist at the root system. When you water, water slowly and completely saturate the soil. Then in 6-10 days check and see if it needs watering again. Stick your finger into the soil 2 or 3 inches deep. If your finger is even slightly damp the plant does NOT need watering. Also many people will stress peppers and tomatoes by with holding water until the plant is slightly wilted in the early morning. This will help in production. Don't worry. Your plant will not fall over dead if it wilts. Oh, I almost forgot. Remove the shrivelled peppers and either hang and dry them more or grind them up into flakes. They appear to be edible peppers so try one to find out.

Chuck,

Fantastic, thanks again. I will go easy on the water.

As to the fruit shriveling: I put my little fellow on a south-facing windowsill after you told me he will take all the sun he can get. He seems to be enjoying it, if those flowers are any indication. Interestingly though, in the neighborhood here there are huge clumps of the things used as autumn plantings by residential buildings out front. They sit on the north side of the building and never get direct sunlight at all. They've been in for about three weeks now and the fruits remain plump and perky - but no flowers.
 
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Chuck,

Fantastic, thanks again. I will go easy on the water.

As to the fruit shriveling: I put my little fellow on a south-facing windowsill after you told me he will take all the sun he can get. He seems to be enjoying it, if those flowers are any indication. Interestingly though, in the neighborhood here there are huge clumps of the things used as autumn plantings by residential buildings out front. They sit on the north side of the building and never get direct sunlight at all. They've been in for about three weeks now and the fruits remain plump and perky - but no flowers.
About the plants on the north side. Some plants like shade, others don"t. Peppers don't. They like all of the sun they can get. Your pepper plant, despite it's precarious beginning looks great. New foliage is good and so are the number of healthy blooms. Give the plant a good shake once or twice per day to insure pollination. AND DON'T WATER MORE
 

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