Agriculture Reference
In-Depth Information
can cross fertilize other pepper plants, therefore care must be taken when planting several
varieties, to ensure there is sufficient space between them to prevent such cross-fertiliza-
tion. Cross-fertilization will only become an issue if you plan on saving the seeds from this
crop of peppers, in that for example, your sweet bells may pick up some fieriness from a
high-Scoville neighbor, if cross-fertilization has occurred. Having sweet and hot peppers
growing alongside one another will not affect taste or flavor come harvest time. Planting is
discussed in chapter 5.
You may be thinking of saving some money and simply saving the seeds from those
peppers you bought in the store. This is unlikely to be a great option for you. Firstly it may
not be an heirloom variety and so the peppers produced may not taste anything like what
you had purchased. More typically, even if the store variety was an heirloom, the store pep-
per was probably harvested prior to it being fully ripe (despite the term “fully ripe” the
peppers we all enjoy and eat is actually just shy of full maturity). Viable seeds will only
come from fully-ripened fruit and so the seeds again are unlikely to germinate and grow.
Hybrids are often produced to provide a range of suitable characteristics e.g. disease
resistance. By having a variety with a particular disease resistance, this does not affect the
taste of the pepper, it only makes it resistant to that particular disease.
To quickly determine if a pepper is an heirloom or hybrid, you need to check the
seed catalogue or seedling label. All will be described by a series of letters after their vari-
ety type to indicate heirloom/hybrid and any characteristics. A list of disease-resistance
codes is as follows:
BD - Blossom Drop
BLS - Bacterial Leaf Spot
CMV - Cucumber Mosaic Virus
PeaMV - Pea Enation Mosaic Virus
PMV - Pepper Mottle Virus
PVY - Potato Virus Y
PYMV - Pepper Yellow Mosaic Virus
TEV - Tobacco Etch Virus
TMV - Tobacco Mosaic Virus
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