Thursday, February 04, 2010

Pie Intermission: Pepper seeds.

The Pepper Seeds continue to incubate. I think one seed sprouted so far - a cayenne.

This method makes it easy to observe the results without opening the bag. However, I did open it briefly to let some air into it.

The thermometer reads 86 F. This article describes experiments on pepper seed germination - looks like 30C (about 86F) is about the highest you can go before viability drops off. Not much difference between 20C and 30C (68F and 86F). They didn't test lower, and the next higher temp, 35C (95F), gave a much poorer result. It took 6 to 10 days for 1/2 of the seeds to germinate. Based on this experiment, I don't need to heat them so warm, but the mat doesnt' give much temperature control. On the other hand, in seed starting medium, they will probably be a little cooler, due to medium between the seeds and the mat.

This article recommends 70F to 90F. They also recommend a presoak in dilute vinegar or dilute tea. This article also states the same thing.

There seems to be a whole subculture built around growing chilis. I have this book pretty good discussion of chili types, history, and cultivation. suggests that peat-based media inhibit either germination or growth of pepper seeds. I don't know how scientific their experiment was, but it's worth keeping in mind. Given that there is signiciant criticism regarding the environmental impact of peat harvesting, there may be some bias - no way for the reader to know.

One little sprout.

Here are the rest of the seeds.

1 comment:

  1. HI,

    Just to let you know the url of the above link has changed due to our site redesign.

    The chilli seed article can now be found here (maybe you'll want to update the link in the article):