My parents have very green fingers and proudly tell me when I visit what we will be eating from the veg patch (I say patch, but it is more of a veg hangar) they grow so much that bunches of beans and punnets of berries have to sit out the front for neighbours to snaffle, either that or Mama T frantically freezes until the time comes when nothing else but blackcurrant ice cream will do.
My Grandad could grow anything; he had vines of grapes pushing out the windows of his greenhouse, flowers that weren’t supposed to even like our climate, misshapen tomatoes that could feed the entire street and cut up milk cartons that were nuturing little green shoots – not that he could always recall what those shoots were…
I don’t have a garden yet, but I do have the next best thing; a south facing balcony that is being turned into a mini jungle ready for Summer. However, it is missing a chilli plant, and my Cayenne Pepper finally *ahem* died, so I thought I would try growing Scotch Bonnet Chillies, and they only went and bloody GREW!! So basically, that means if I can grow something, anyone can.
2 weeks after sowing ~ january
4 weeks after planting
Ready for first repot!
1 seedling per pot
chilli bums 5 months after planting
nearly a chilli!
ready to pick!
A few little tips if you want to try…
I put mine in a darkened cupboard with cling film over until they sprouted
I didn’t really need to water them as the cling film kept the moisture in
I didn’t have anything snazzy to use, so I just popped them in terracotta yoghurt pots from La Peche Mignon :)
The minute they sprouted, I removed the cling film and popped them in sunlight above a radiator
They grew fast! The 1st repot is needed when they have 2 sets of leave…apparently!
I kept repotting every few weeks when they looked too big for their pot
When they got chunky, I supported them with a kebab skewer – chic!
I didn’t put them outside until it got really warm, above 20oC
They drank alorra water and needed watering everyday until they reached 30cm high (if the leaves turn yellow, they’re getting a bit too much water…so Google says)
It took about 6 months from sowing to get little chubby chillies
I fed them when they started to grow fruit…and that was it!