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CAPSICUM annuum (Fasciculatum Group)

Image of Capsicum annuum (Fasciculatum Group)

Family

Solanaceae

Botanical Name

CAPSICUM annuum( Fasciculatum Group)

Plant Common Name

Clustered Pepper

General Description

Distinguished by their erect clusters of conical fruits, cultivated peppers in the fasciculatum group are typically grown for their ornamental value and come in shades of red, yellow, orange or purple. Peppers originate from the tropical Americas, so they are well adapted to heat, humidity and some drought. They are annuals that produce bushy plants with rigid, brittle stems and thin, often broad, dark green leaves. Their flowers are inconspicuous, five-petaled and white.

The upright, conical peppers of plants in this group tend to be smaller and have a spicy flavor. Fruits are green when immature but turn shades of red, orange, yellow, purple, or near ivory, depending on the selection. On the interior they are lined with spongy ribbing which supports many small, flattened, rounded seeds. The majority of the fruit’s heat comes from the inner lining, so cook peppers whole if you want to impart their flavor without adding any spice.

Green fruits have a sharper taste and mature are sweeter. The heat 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. The pepper’s seeds and inner lining carry more heat than the flesh of the fruit.

Peppers are warm season vegetables that are easy to grow if provided full sun, warmth and fertile, perfectly drained soil. Regular feeding is required for good growth and fruit production. Peppers generally take 60 to 90 days to harvest. Some vascular wilts, tobacco mosaic virus and fungal problems can befall them, but overall they are not needy. Proper spacing will keep diseases at bay and help with fruit production, so plant according to the grower’s guidelines.

Peppers can be ornamental too, so enjoy them as bedding or container plants as well as vegetable garden standbys.

Scoville Scale: http://www.chilliworld.com/FactFile/Scoville_Scale.asp

Characteristics

  • AHS Heat Zone

    11 - 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

    1'-3' / 0.3m - 0.9m

  • Width

    8"-24" / 20.3cm - 61.0cm

  • Bloom Time

    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, Winter

Ornamental Features

  • Flower Interest

    Insignificant

  • Flower Color

    White, Yellow, Yellow Green

  • Fruit Color

    White, Yellow, Red, Green, Purple, Orange, Ivory, Black

  • Foliage Color (Spring)

    Green

  • Foliage Color (Summer)

    Green

  • Foliage Color (Fall)

    Green, Black

  • Foliage Color (Winter)

    Green

  • Fragrant Flowers

    No

  • Fragrant Fruit

    Yes

  • 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

    Yes