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CAPSICUM annuum 'Calico'

Image of Capsicum annuum 'Calico' (Conoides Group)

Environmental Horticulture Dept. University of Florida

Family

Solanaceae

Botanical Name

CAPSICUM annuum 'Calico'( Conoides Group)

Plant Common Name

Calico Ornamental Pepper, Ornamental Pepper

General Description

The cone pepper ‘Calico’ is grown as an ornamental for its multi-colored leaves and showy fruits that turn from black to red. The plants are well-branched, bushy and compact and the peppers small, erect, conical, and solitary (not clustered). Native to tropical America, peppers are brittle-stemmed, warm season annuals that have been grown and selected by Native Americans since pre-history times.

Thin, oval, dark green leaves with cream and purple markings crowd the low, well-branched stems of 'Calico'. Inconspicuous purplish flowers give way to black-purple cone-shaped peppers that mature to red. On the interior they are divided by spongy ribbing which supports many small, flattened, rounded seeds. Fruits of this ornamental pepper are edible but consumption is not recommended because they are extremely hot. Care must be taken with plants grown at nurseries for ornamental purposes; they may have been treated with pesticides or other chemicals not suitable for edible plants.

Peppers are warm season vegetables that are easy to grow, if you can provide them with the correct conditions. Full sun, warmth, regular feeding and fertile, perfectly drained soil are required for good growth and fruit production. Vascular wilts and fungal diseases can be a problem in subpar conditions. Proper spacing will keep diseases at bay and help with fruit production, so plant according to the grower’s guidelines.

This ornamental pepper works well in bedding plantings and containers. Avoid planting it where children might be tempted to sample the scorching hot fruits.

For more information about the Scoville Scale see http://www.chilliworld.com/FactFile/Scoville_Scale.asp

Characteristics

  • AHS Heat Zone

    12 - 1

  • Sunset Zone

    A1, A2, A3, H1, H2, 1a, 1b, 2a, 2b, 3a, 3b, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24

  • Plant Type

    Vegetable

  • Sun Exposure

    Full Sun

  • Height

    10"-12" / 25.4cm - 30.5cm

  • Width

    14"-16" / 35.6cm - 40.6cm

  • Bloom Time

    Spring, Summer, Indeterminate

  • Native To

    Mexico, Central America, South America

Growing Conditions

  • Soil pH

    Neutral

  • Soil Drainage

    Well Drained

  • Soil type

    Loam

  • Growth Rate

    Fast

  • Water Requirements

    Average Water

  • Habit

    Oval/Rounded

  • Seasonal Interest

    Spring, Summer, Fall

Ornamental Features

  • Flower Interest

    Insignificant

  • Flower Color

    Purple

  • Fruit Color

    Red, Purple, Black

  • Foliage Color (Spring)

    White, Purple, Dark Green

  • Foliage Color (Spring) Modifier

    Variegated

  • Foliage Color (Summer)

    White, Purple, Dark Green

  • Foliage Color (Summer) Modifier

    Variegated

  • Foliage Color (Fall)

    White, Purple, Dark Green, Black

  • Foliage Color (Fall) Modifier

    Variegated

  • Foliage Color (Winter)

    White, Purple, Dark Green

  • Foliage Color (Winter) Modifier

    Variegated

  • Fragrant Flowers

    No

  • Fragrant Fruit

    No

  • Fragrant Foliage

    No

  • Bark or Stem Fragrant

    No

  • Flower Petal Number

    Single

  • Repeat Bloomer

    Yes

  • Showy Fruit

    Yes

  • Edible Fruit

    Yes

  • Showy Foliage

    No

  • Foliage Texture

    Medium

  • Foliage Sheen

    Glossy

  • Evergreen

    Semi-Evergreen

  • Showy Bark

    No

Special Characteristics

  • Usage

    Bedding Plant, Container, Edible, Herb / Vegetable, Mixed Border, Tropical

  • Sharp or Has Thorns

    No

  • Invasive

    No

  • Self-Sowing

    No