Still deliberating over my ‘final’ list as per usual! It will be 'more of the same' with some small tweaks here and there, and no radical changes in approach from me. I feel I’m close to optimum in terms of squeezing the maximum potential out of my small greenhouse space (8’ x 6’).
Here's my current thinking on the line-up and GH layout, likely to change a bit;
The game is now afoot! Early sowings in my trusty Garland Fab 4 on New year’s Day;
Aji Bodysnatcher F3
Yorkshire Barghest F1 (I only have 2 seed, fingers crossed!)
Also, my 6 year old Trindad Scorpion CARDI Yellow has finally begun to sprout after the usual hard root and branch cutback, great to see new leaves unfurling from his mighty old trunk... come on old boy, you can do it! 8)
I’m having a major extension on the house this year in spring, so hoping that my grow won't suffer too much.
I wanted to post-up details of next year’s LOTG competition as soon as possible, as I know many are planning your grow for next season at this time of year.
After consulting some of my esteemed chilli friends we have decided a c.chinense based contest is well overdue!
The competition will be open for entries from both Chillies Galore and The Hot Pepper forums and the team challenge gauntlet will be thrown down once again for added spice.
Welcome to LAND OF THE GIANTS 2017 - Biggest Bonnet Competition
Biggest Individual Pod
The objective is simple, grow the biggest Scotch Bonnet MOA you can and post your results in this thread and over the course of the season we will maintain a leader board of the biggest pods. This year length will be dropped (not really applicable to a bonnet!), all about the girth and weight of the pod this year.
Details of prizes TBC at this stage, but as usual I will be tapping up seed vendors and other chilli related companies for prizes... if you are interested in sponsoring the comp please PM me… the competition threads attracted 25k views across two leading chilli forums, so I am sure it is great publicity!
1) Biggest pod = (circumference measurement in cm plus weight in grams). i.e. my pod is 15cm around and weights 20g, giving a score = 35
2) Entries must be submitted with photo clearly showing circumference measurements posted in this thread. The pod doesn't have to be ripe. Pod must be pictured with a tape measure wrapped around the fattest point to show circumference. The pod must be pictured in a scale showing the weight in grams.
3) Entries restricted to ‘Scotch Bonnet MOA’. Seeds of this variety are widely available from many seed vendors worldwide – if you are having difficulty sourcing seed, message me and I will try and help you out. Reason for restricting variety is to keep a reasonably level playing field and stop some crazy hybrid taking the prize. Judges call will be final if the pics you present do not resemble a typical Scotch Bonnet pod. i.e. no yellow bell peppers please!
4) Number of entries not restricted - allowing for improvement of best result / bigger pods as the season progresses.
5) Comp will run for the duration of the 2017 season, finish date for final entries will be 31/10/16.
6) Leader board will be maintained throughout with entries from both CG and THP members at the top of the thread.
7) Entry will be free and sourcing your own seed will be part of the fun.
8.) Plants must be grown from seed in the 2017 growing season
Chillies Galore Vs The Hot Pepper Ryder Pod Challenge
This is a team spin off from the main biggest pod competition. A separate team leader board will be maintained with the top 5 entries from CG and THP.
1) Post your entry to the THP thread if you are intended your entry to be counted towards the THP team score
2) Post your entry to the CG thread if you are intended your entry to be counted towards the CG team score
3) Team leader board will be maintained throughout with entries from both CG and THP at the top of the thread
4) The team with the highest cumulative score from the top 5 entrants at the end of the season will take the honours!
What is your first name on the team sheet for 2017 and why?
Mine is Trinidad Scorpion Yellow CARDI, my 5 year old veteran... headed into his sixth year. But not just the sentimental value, remains my no.1 all round favourite. Productive, huge pods, great fruity flavour and really managable heat (about 100-200k SHU). I can safely whack one on a curry or chilli-con-carne without fear of making it too hot, whilst adding a sublime heat and flavour.
I got myself some surgical tweezers and some cheap reading glasses with 3x magnification. The reading glasses were a breakthrough, allowing me to quickly and efficiently emasculate the parent plant flowers ready for pollination. Before that I was either butchering the flowers or fiddling around trying to hold a magnifying glass at the same time which was a nightmare.
I eventually managed to get the cross to take in both directions Lemon Drop (parent) x Aji White Fantasy (pollinator) and vice versa, grew the pods to maturity and harvested the seed.
At the start of 2016 I planted both F1 variants and here are the results…
Lemon Drop x Aji White Fantasy F1 produced pods which closely resemble a Lemon Drop, infact at first I thought the cross hadn’t worked. But after harvesting mature pods, I’ve noted that they are bigger and a paler shade of yellow than standard Lemon Drops. The taste and heat profile similar, but subtly different to a Lemon Drop.
Aji White Fantasy x Lemon Drop F1 produced a whole new pod shape altogether and turned out yellow. I saw a bit of variation in shapes with some of the later season pods developing spikes which was really cool. Occurred to me the fruit looked like alien pods dangling in bunches from the plant, hence the name I came up with. The taste profile is very similar to a Lemon Drop with the same zesty zing. The heat profile I would say is slightly lower. This is a great chilli to add flavour used fresh without overbearing heat, makes a sublime addition to fresh salsa!
My Aji White Fantasy x Lemon Drop F1 first pods
Aji Bodysnatcher F1 lovely spikey pods…
Aji Bodysnatcher F1 pods ripening
I’m currently growing out the Aji Bodysnatcher F2 generation and hope for ripe pods with the right characteristics to select from this year so I can crack on with the F3 generation at the start of next year. I’ll post back when I have the F2 results to share, so far lots of variation in the 6 plants I have indoors in 1l pots, not sure I’ve got a big enough sample to recreate the shape I’m looking for but I’m still hopeful!