Carolina Reaper Diary (part 1)

How to grow hot chilies with the help of worms

In my Carolina Reaper diary I attempt to document the best ways to grow these extreme hot chilies successfully from seed. After successfully growing my first Carolina Reaper plant from

seed and seeing it flourish into a small tree with a hundred fruit pods or more i learned that there are a lot of myths about growing hot chili plants that are floating around in cyber space. 

If you don't know who's information you can trust In the end it will all come down to personal experience. After many trials and disappointments i managed to grow one Carolina Reaper plant from the 5 seeds I purchased 9 month ago. To help all those that are new to growing hot chili peppers from seed I am intending to document to the best of my ability the different stages and time frames involved in growing these beautiful chili plants from preparing the seeds and planting them to getting them to germinate, flower and fruit.

Freshly harvested fruit pod for the Carolina Reaper diary (part 1)

To start my Carolina reaper diary I harvested the first ripe chili pod on the 30 of March 2017, removed the seeds and dried them in a polystyrene container lined with tissue paper for exactly 2 month. The second Reaper fruit pod pictured above I harvested on the 30 of May 2017, removed the seeds and planted the dried seeds as well as the fresh seeds under the exact same conditions the same day

Altogether there were 28 dried and 28 fresh seeds which were planted in a medium of equal amounts of fresh compost, worm castings and sand. The germination medium was filled into 4 six packs. Dry and fresh seeds were separated and planted into 2 six packs each. 

4  Six packs prepared for CR seeds4 Six packs prepared for CR seeds

All seeds were just placed on the surface of the germination medium and separated at equal distances in the Six packs. with 2 six packs containing dried seeds and two fresh seeds I decided to plant the seeds in 2 different locations under different conditions. 

Carolina Reaper seeds in a plastic bag on window sillCarolina Reaper seeds in a plastic bag on window sill

2 six packs (one with dry seeds one with fresh seeds )were packed into clear plastic bags with the tops of the bags bend over and locked with a rubber band to keep in warmth and moisture levels stable. Once they were stored safely inside the plastic bags they were placed inside the house on the window sill that is receiving the most sun at this time of the year.

The remaining two six packs (one with fresh seeds and one with dried ones) were placed inside a worm bin which was than covered with a lid. The worms in the worm bin will have access to the compost in the seed trays and will most likely feed on it in the following days and weeks.

Here in Cape Town are at the moment still moderately warm temperatures of 20 + degrees C / 68 F during the day but as we are going into winter the night temperatures are at the moment falling to 15 degrees C / 59 F. Hot chilies like warm temperatures and it will be interesting to see if and what kind of germination rate of the Carolina Reaper we will achieve at this time of the year.

Even under ideal conditions it can easily take more than 30 days before the seeds of this super hot chili will germinate. 

I will keep you posted

Click here to read the Carolina Reaper Diary part 2

Click here to read the Carolina Reaper Diary part 3

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