DID YOU


KNOW...?


Peppers make excellent CONTAINER plants!

The soil warms faster - giving these tropical heat-loving plants a jump start in the spring.

Bigger plants faster equals more fruits sooner!

As an added bonus, you can also easily bring plants inside at the end of the season.

Peppers all winter? Yes, please!




PEPPER HELP GUIDES

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» Pepper Growing Tips

» Processing Fresh Chile Peppers

» Pepper Growing Tips

» Pepper Varieties & Classifications




PHOTOGALLERY
Download a copy of the 2018 Michigan Heirlooms Pepper catalog

Agriturismo Tholos Pepper
AGRITURISMO THOLOS
On January 9th, 2015, Russ Acteo posted the below history at Doc and Katie's Facebook page detailing the history, uses and how I came to be offering this amazing pepper...

"The shorter version of the longer story is that my father's family is from the Abruzzi region of Italy. During the summer of 2014, my father and I returned to this region to explore the country side, discover a few more unique bits of family history and ... well bond.

During the two weeks we were there, at just about every place we stopped to eat, we had this toasted hot pepper oil. It is used like salt or pepper and sprinkled on just about everything. When i asked about how to make it, recipes were varied but seeds for the peppers were not to be found.

Then as we stayed at one particular inn, they pointed out the dried peppers hanging in a string across the hutch. Needless to say, a few peppers and their seeds landed in my pocket. I grew them out this past summer and sent a few to Karen Golden of Michigan Heirlooms who also grew them out.

The peppers are long and slender and hot. Not super hot, but hot. My plants were about 3 feet tall, though I imagine they would be taller if grown in warmer climates as well as more productive. Fruit set early, turns red when ripe and when hung to dry, dry to a beautiful burgundy red. When dried, they should be sliced/ cut thin and put in oil. Bring the oil up to temp and when you see and smell the peppers are toasting, remove from the heat. Spoon to taste over eggs, pasta etc.

When my father was with us for the holidays, I served pasta and the pepper oil to him and after he told me that it was exactly like his father had made and that these peppers were perfect. These would also be great smoked, dried and ground into a spicy smoked paprika. This really is a great pepper. I have released a few seeds for this and plants may be available this spring through Michigan Heirlooms by Variations Horticultural Services."

SPECIES: C. annuum
HEAT LEVEL: Medium
FRUIT COLOR: Green > Red
ORIGIN: Italy
SCOVILLE HU: 10,000 ???


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Aji Mango pepper
AJI MANGO
Aji Mango peppers have a beautiful mango fruit aroma to them along with that amazing flavor. It's a different kind of fruitiness from other chiles- less sharp and harsh, more full-bodied, and a lot more subtle. These peppers are flavorful and spicy and can be used for a multitude of dishes, especially anything South American. 

You can reduce the heat significantly by removing the seeds and placenta (the flesh that holds the seeds) for stuffing, to create a very colorful popper while providing only a mild heat to the finished dish.

SPECIES: C. baccatum
HEAT LEVEL: Medium
FRUIT COLOR: Green > Orange
ORIGIN: Peru; developed from species
SCOVILLE HU: 30,000 - 50,000


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Big Thai Pepper
BIG THAI
There are dozens of varieties of chilies that fall under the category of Thai peppers all of which originate from three species originally found in Thailand. They all share common characteristics, colors, and general heat. You’ll typically get some solid heat and flavor out of any chili labeled as Thai peppers.

There are also lots of products based around Thai chilies, from pepper flakes and hot sauces, to marinades and powders. These are very popular for their hot kick, and the fact that they can add heat in a pinch for Thai dishes if needed.

Plants are prolific and are great for containers. Thin-walled, 3 to 6-inch long by 1/2 inch fruits begin green and mature to red.

SPECIES: C. annuum
HEAT LEVEL: Medium
FRUIT COLOR: Green > Red
ORIGIN: USA
SCOVILLE HU: 5,000 - 10,000


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Buena Mulata Pepper
BUENA MULATA
MOST OUTSTANDING NEW PEPPER OF 2017!

Tons of iridescent purple peppers in various stages of coloration are truly a sight to behold! Fruits begin briefly as green and then quickly turn the mostly amazing shiny lavender / deep grape eventually turning to red.

Every so often the plant will throw a 'mutant' colored fruit that will stop you in your tracks! Apricot flesh washed in the same iridescent purple. I saved seed from this particular pod and will grow out several plants in 2018. I can't wait to see what the fruits will look like!

Plants are oddly unable to support the weight of the copious amounts of fruits so they will need some serious stakes or support system.

Purportedly from William Woys Weaver's grandfathers collection who received the original seed from African-American folk artist Horace Pippin in 1944.

SPECIES: C. annuum
HEAT LEVEL: Medium
FRUIT COLOR:: Green > Purple > Red
ORIGIN: USA heirloom?
SCOVILLE HU: 10,000 - 30,000


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Cayenne, Large Thick Pepper
CAYENNE, Large Thick
These attractive plants are covered with 7 inches long by 1-1/4 inch fruits which are wrinkled, tapered and curved. Medium-thick sized walled, they ripen from a lustrous dark green to a brilliant scarlet.

Very pungent, even when small. This variety is said to be particularly high in vitamins C and A.

A favorite for using dried, pickled or in sauces. Cayenne peppers are used fresh in hot sauces, dried or ground for cayenne pepper or pepper flakes or threaded onto a string as an attractive 'Rista' craft decoration.

SPECIES: C. annuum
HEAT LEVEL: Medium
FRUIT COLOR: Green > Red
ORIGIN: USA
SCOVILLE HU: 3,000 - 10,000


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Golden Cayenne pepper
CAYENNE, Golden
Vibrant lemon-yellow fruits produce prolific yields of 6" long narrow fruits which are slightly hotter than the standard red cayenne. Golden cayenne is larger, more uniform and has smooth rather than the characteristic rippled skin of the standard red.

Perfect for stringing into ristas and hanging in your kitchen. Dried fruits maintain a nice dark yellow color. I ground mine up into a powder which I use every single morning on my eggs!

SPECIES: C. annuum
HEAT LEVEL: Medium
FRUIT COLOR: Green > Yellow
ORIGIN: United States
SCOVILLE HU: 35,000


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Orange Cayenne Pepper
CAYENNE, Orange
Beautiful and prolific fruits mature from green to a bright, glossy orange. The spicy peppers are 3 - 5 inches in length and 1/2 inch wide. They have a green stem with its calyx sitting atop like a hat. Smooth skinned fruits taper to a point, with a tip more rounded than that of a red cayenne. Most peppers will maintain a straight shape, though some may be curved or slightly twisted. Medium-thick walled containing a moderate amount of seeds. They have a fruity, citrusy flavor before the heat kicks in. The heat will be apparent right away and will not linger for very long.

The origin of this variety is not known although seed began showing up in commercial catalogs in the United Kingdom around 2009. Quite possible a hybrid that is now open-pollinated.

SPECIES: C. annuum
HEAT LEVEL: Medium
FRUIT COLOR: Green > Orange
ORIGIN: United Kingdom
SCOVILLE HU: 35,000


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Czech Black pepper
CZECH BLACK
The Czechoslovakian Black pepper is a lesser known variety that is well loved for its mildly spicy heat - a tad less than a jalapeño - which is concentrated in the ribs and seeds. 

Black immature pods ripen to deep garnet-red; when dried they shine and turn a stunning color of maroon.

Bears very early with pointed thick-walled, 2½"–long conical peppers on 2½–3' plants which are very hardy, easy to grow and disease resistant!

They make an awesome powder, both in color and flavor.

SPECIES: C. annuum
HEAT LEVEL: Medium
FRUIT COLOR: Green > Red
ORIGIN: USA
SCOVILLE HU: 2,500 - 5,000


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Fish Pepper
FISH
Beautiful green and white variegated foliage on 18-24" plants. Pendant fruits are 2-3" long ripening from striped green and cream (although not all fruits have this coloration, many will be solid green) to orange and finally to red.

Unarguably ornamental, these peppers should be used for adding spice to your favorite dishes as they were traditionally used in oyster and crab houses around the Chesapeake Bay area, between Baltimore, Maryland and Philadelphia, Pennsylvania dating back to the 18th century where they became the 'secret' ingredient used by many in the African American communities in the areas.

The grandfather of William Weaver Woys acquired seeds in 1940 from Horace Pippin, a black painter popular in West Chester, Pennsylvania. Mr. Woys shared the seeds through Seed Savers Exchange in 1995. Click here to read Mr. Woys own account of the history of this amazing pepper.

SPECIES: C. annuum
HEAT LEVEL: Medium
FRUIT COLOR: Green > Red
ORIGIN: Africa
SCOVILLE HU: 5,000 - 30,000


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Hinkelhatz Pepper
HINKELHATZ
A prolific producer of small fruits, ¾" wide by 1-2" long, tapering to a blunt point, ripen from green to glossy red. The pods are covered with tiny bumps and wrinkles. The plant is bush-like, small and compact, measuring 1 1/2 to 2 feet tall. Cold tolerant, lending itself to a longer season than the average hot pepper, with resistance to pests and disease.

Cultivated by the Pennsylvania Dutch (*Dutch is actually a corruption of Deutsch, i.e. German, not as in from the Netherlands) since the 1880s. The name translates as "chicken heart".

Its flavor is described as “stocky” and it is considered to be quite hot. Traditionally used for pickling and making pepper vinegar. The Pennsylvania Dutch cooked and pureed it to make a pepper vinegar, a condiment often sprinkled on sauerkraut. Though its production area has spread across the country, the seeds are still quite rare and offered only by a select few seed companies.

SPECIES: C. annuum
HEAT LEVEL: Medium
FRUIT COLOR: Green > Red
ORIGIN: Germany > PA, USA
SCOVILLE HU: 30,000


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Hungarian Hot Wax Pepper
HUNGARIAN HOT WAX
Light yellow fruits have thin walls and are 4"-6" in length, tapering to a rounded point. The peppers are orange red when ripe, but most people pick them while still yellow, before they ripen.

Semi-hot fruits are widely used in Hungarian cuisine. Frequently pickled. Also commonly dried, ground and presented as Paprika.

This is a popular garden pepper and a reliable producer in cooler climates.

SPECIES: C. annuum
HEAT LEVEL: Medium
FRUIT COLOR: Pale Yellow
ORIGIN: Hungary
SCOVILLE HU: 2,500 - 8,000


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Jalapeno Pepper
JALAPEÑO
The Jalapeño is one of the best known peppers in the world. It is named after the city of Xalapa in Mexico. The standard Jalapeño produces 3" thick walled fruits which ripen from green to red. They are usually eaten in the green stage, but when allowed to fully ripen, Jalapeños become a little sweeter.

The thick fruitwall is difficult to dry and so they are, when ripe, often dried and smoked over hardwood. This product is called chipotle. The jalapeno has a unique flavor. Most often canned or pickled they can be used fresh in salsas or cut into rings for nachos. Stuffed with meat or cheese and either grilled or oven-baked is my favorite way to enjoy them!

SPECIES: C. annuum
HEAT LEVEL: Medium
FRUIT COLOR: Green > Red
ORIGIN: Mexico
SCOVILLE HU: 2,500 - 10,000


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Jalapeno Maxi jala Pepper
JALAPEÑO, Maxi-Jala
Originally a hybrid developed by United Genetics, this now open-pollinated pepper is the same basic Jalapeño you've come to love but on steroids! Fruits can reach a whopping 5 inches long!

I was truly impressed with plant. Vigorous, healthy and very productive.

The perfect choice for Poppers, grilling, stuffing, pickling, salads, pureeing, salsas and roasting

SPECIES: C. annuum
HEAT LEVEL: Medium
FRUIT COLOR: Green > Red
ORIGIN: OP hybrid; California, USA
SCOVILLE HU: 2,500 - 10,000


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Purple Jalapeno PepperJALAPEÑO, Purple
Plants are very productive with a single plant producing up to 50 pods which begin as a brilliant emerald green, then mature to a stunning dark purple and finally to a fabulous scarlet red.

As the plants often have chiles on them of varying ages, all three colors are often seen on a single plant which produces a most wonderful and most beautiful color effect!

Note: Fruits turn green when cooked.

(PHOTO COURTESY OF JOHN HECK)

SPECIES: C. annuum
HEAT LEVEL: Medium
FRUIT COLOR: Purple
ORIGIN: Mexico
SCOVILLE HU: 5,000 - 7,000


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Jaloro - Yellow jalapeno PepperJALORO

Developed by the Texas Agriculture Extension Service in 1992, this open pollinated Jalapeño begins yellow, maturing to orange and finally turning red, if left on the plant long enough.

While they can be used at any stage of coloration, they are most frequently used yellow.

Very compact plants, with high yields. The size of the fruit is similar to the standard Jalapeño, but not as blocky. Heat and taste are also similar, but Jaloro has a slight fruity finish.

Excellent disease resistance.

SPECIES: C. annuum
HEAT LEVEL: Mild to Medium
FRUIT COLOR: Cream > Orange > Red
ORIGIN: USA
SCOVILLE HU: 1,000 - 5,000


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Lemon Drop or Aji Limo pepper
LEMON DROP (Aji Limo)
One of the most flavorful of the Andean peppers, bright yellow, crinkled, cone-shaped fruits are about 2½” long and 1/2" wide and mature from green to glossy bright yellow. Distinctive citrus flavor reminiscent of lemons and limes.

The Aji Límo belongs to the species Capsicum baccatum, which are first cousins to our common bell peppers. As a group, baccatums are noted for their distinctive flavors and tolerance of cold weather. This is one reason why they have become extremely popular in England, where cool nights can stunt the growth of many peppers.


SPECIES: C. baccatum
HEAT LEVEL: Medium
FRUIT COLOR: Lt Green > Yellow
ORIGIN: Lima district, Peru. Andes Mountains
SCOVILLE HU: 40,000


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Peter Pepper Wax Pepper
PETER PEPPER, Alfrey's Strain
An heirloom dating back to the 1800's, this variety was saved and reintroduced by Mr. H.W. Alfrey, owner of Alfrey Seeds, from Knoxville, Tennessee.  He spent years collecting seed from only the most "anatomically realistic" fruits. He continued his project, until his death in 2000.

Fruits are 4 to 6 inches in length, and slightly wrinkled. To obtain the greatest amount of 'anatomical' consistency, avoid overwatering. Pods start out green, maturing to a nice bright red. They can be used at stage. Plants grow 24 to 30 inches tall with excellent production.

A great conversation piece in the garden or in the kitchen due to its distinctively phallic shape. They make excellent chili powder and are great for salsas!

SPECIES: C. annuum
HEAT LEVEL: Medium
FRUIT COLOR: Green > Red
ORIGIN: USA - Knoxville, Tennessee
SCOVILLE HU: 10,000 - 23,000


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Poblano Ancho San Martin Pepper
POBLANO (Ancho)
These extremely productive plants are multi-stemmed and reach 30 to 36 inches in height, with 30 or more peppers per plant. Fruits average 4 to 6 inches long and about 2 to 3inches wide with a slight taper and blunt end. Dark green in color they eventually mature to be nearly black. They can be used in any color stage.

Poblanos have a mild pungency, ranging from 600 to 1,500 Scoville units***. Their delicate heat gives a gentle kick to salsa, dips and stuffing mixes or they can be sautéed. The very thick walled peppers are usually roasted and peeled before use. Also great for stuffing, this is the pepper used in the classic Mexican chiles rellenos recipe.

Originating in the State of Puebla, Mexico. The peppers are known as Poblano when fresh and Ancho when dried. When dried this pepper becomes a broad, flat, heart-shaped pod, it is often ground into a powder used for flavoring recipes. Ancho means "wide" in Spanish.

(***NOTE: While Poblanos tend to be mild, occasionally and unpredictably they can have significant heat. Indeed, different peppers from the same plant have been reported to vary substantially in heat intensity.)

SPECIES: C. annuum
HEAT LEVEL: Mild to Medium
FRUIT COLOR: Green > Red
ORIGIN: Mexico
SCOVILLE HU: 600 - 1,500 (+)


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Serrano Pepper
SERRANO
Bullet shaped chiles average 2” long x 1/2" wide, are thick fleshed with very small seed cavities and mature from lime green to red. The pods grow on tall 30 inch plants.

Plants are very, very productive. It is not uncommon for a plant to hold up to fifty pepper pods. Perfect for salsas, sauces, relishes, garnishes, and more. They are unusually good when roasted. Chefs tend to use Serrano over Jalapenos due to their consistent (albeit higher) heat levels.

"Serrano" translated to English means 'from the mountains', after the mountain ridges of Puebla and Hidalgo in Mexico from where they are thought to have originated.

SPECIES: C. annuum
HEAT LEVEL: Medium
FRUIT COLOR: Green > Red
ORIGIN: Mexico
SCOVILLE HU: 10,000 - 23,000


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Szechwan Pepper
SZECHUAN
Four inches long by 1/2 inches wide fruits are used extensively in Oriental cuisine. These long thin walled slender pods mature from green to red.

Plants are 24 to 30 inches tall and very productive. This variety was developed by the Asian Vegetable & Development Center, Taiwan.

SPECIES: C. annuum
HEAT LEVEL: Medium
FRUIT COLOR: Green > Red
ORIGIN: China
SCOVILLE HU: 30,000 - 50,000


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Wenk's Yellow Hots Pepper
Wenk's Yellow HotS
Three-inch long wax peppers with thick walls, ripens from yellow to bright orange then red. Grown by the late Erris Wenk, one of the last large truck farmers in Albuquerque's South Valley.

In terms of spice, this variety produces medium to hot peppers with a full flavor of citrus. Because these waxy yellow fruits are very fleshy, they are often used for pickling.

SPECIES: C. annuum
HEAT LEVEL: Medium
FRUIT COLOR: Cream
ORIGIN: New Mexico, USA
SCOVILLE HU: 10,000 - 30,000


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