James H. Schutte
CAPSICUM annuum 'Anaheim'( Longum Group)
Plant Common Name
Anaheim Chile, Hot Pepper
A group of open-pollinated chilis distinguished by their large size and mild flavor, 'Anaheim' peppers originated around 1900 in Anaheim, California, from seeds of New Mexican origin. Anaheim peppers are among the best known members of the Longum group, which encompasses poblanos, serranos, jalapenos, cayenne peppers and various other chilis. These annual vegetables descend from varieties that were grown and selected by Native Americans for thousands of years.
The bushy, knee-high plants bear thin, oval, dark green leaves on stiff brittle stems. Inconspicuous white flowers appear in warm weather, followed by elongated, hollow, pendent fruits with thin crisp flesh that ripens from green to red. The chambered interior is divided by spongy ribbing which supports many small, flattened, rounded seeds. Fruits may be harvested green or allowed to mature to full color.
This warm season vegetable grows easily in favorable conditions. Full sun, warmth, ample spacing, and fertile well-drained soil are required for good growth and fruit production. Harvest begins about 80 days after seedlings are planted. Vascular wilts and fungal diseases can be a problem in subpar conditions. Pinch off early flower buds to encourage stronger branching and roots. Heavily fruiting plants may break apart under the weight if not staked for support. Keep fruit picked off daily to encourage new blossoms to form. This chili pepper is delicious fresh, stuffed and baked, or roasted.
The heat in pepper fruit is produced by a chemical called capsaicin, which is measured in scaled units called Scoville units. The purer the capsaicin the hotter the pepper and higher the Scoville rating. Most of the heat comes from the pithy ribs, inner lining and seeds of the pepper, so keep this in mind when cooking with them.
Scoville Scale: http://www.chilliworld.com/FactFile/Scoville_Scale.asp