Gary L. Simmons  rev 03/12/12
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Chili Pepper Gardener's Diary

Crossed chilies

Nothing speaks louder than actions so I've decided to start a Chili Pepper Gardeners Diary. What I'm going to do is to keep an online journal on how I proceed through the growing season by chronicling a year's worth of gardening activities. Maybe more than one year if this seems worthwhile and you guys don't make my head asplode .   If you have any questions or suggestions then I'll be happy to hear from you. Keep in mind that I've had tremendous success over the years with the process I use and I'm a cantankerous old fart set in my ways. I'm able to keep myself and my friends in chilies and hot sauce with plenty to spare by farming only 24 five gallon pots.

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The Harvest Count For The 2012 Season
Bhut Jolokia
(Ghost Chilies)
0 and counting!


March 2012

3-2: Three sprouts! Looks like it is going to happen this year!

3-4: Started fixing up the garden to ready it for the new crop of Ghost chilies. I didn't grow anything but weeds last year so the garden has fallen into awful disrepair. I took all the pots out and set them to the side (they are packed full of weeds) and pulled up the runner grass and weeds out of the bark that sits on top of the black plastic foundation. The bark is mostly decomposed now and full of insects, hungry sprout eating insects. I'm going to scoop it all out and recycle it but the green waste is full from all the weeds I pulled up out of the bark! When they collect the green waste on Tuesday I can remove the bark.

3-6: I removed all the old wet decomposed bark from the planting bed, stuff weighs a ton. I'm going to have to transfer some of it to the landfill trash. I'm sure they need a little ruffage to help wash down all of that paint and plastic.

3-7: Two more Ghost chili sprouts! Looks like it's really on for this year.

3-10: Another sprout! That's six plants now. Twice as many pure bred ghost chilies as the year before last. I we

3-11: Planted 5 of the sprouts into peat pots filled with potting soil. Gave them about an hour of morning sun and nearly fried them. Gotta be more careful with these guys when they are fresh out of the desktop greenhouse. Greenhouse is warm and wet, sun is hot and dry. The leaves started to curl and dry along the edges. Still, I must continue to harden them to the sun, I'll give them a half hour tomorrow. Also, I have spread the redwood bark into the planting bed. The bed is now ready to receive the 5 gallon pots as soon as I can amend the soil in them.

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Feburary 2012

2-2: And so it starts. Ordered 20 Bhut Jolokia seeds today from the Whatcom Seed Company at I pretty much picked them out at random after a google search. They had Paypal and they had the seeds so that's all I was really looking for.

2-10: Got the seeds today. It's still a little early to germinate them. I don't want to go out into my garden and amend the soil in the pots yet either. I didn't grow anything last year, a few tomatoes and the pot garden is totally overgrown with weeds. The bulk of them are growing down into loose bark on top of a sheet of plastic so they come right up but the pots are overgrown too and I'm going to have to empty each pot into a wheel barrow and bust the soil up and remove the weed roots. That's a lot of work with about 30 pots. I'll amend 20 pots, one for each Bhut Jolokia seed but honestly, I don't think more than 10 of them will sprout.

2-20: Decided to plant the seeds into my Jiffy Greenhouse. Yes that old thing is still kicking. I sterilized it with bleach, then rinsed it and dried it. Each seed is getting it's own peat pod. Now ordinarily I'd plant 4 times as many seeds with 3 or 4 seeds in each peat pod but these things are expensive. A double or triple sprout in a pod will be a waste of pot planting root space. I'd rather have 3 single sprout plants each in their own pot than a triple sprout in one pot. I'll get more chilies that way with the small amount of seeds I have.

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