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Went out back for a few minutes - picked about twenty hot peppers (jalapeno, Thai Hybrids) and three ripe yellow habanero. A great year for peppers - tomatoes, however, just don't seem to ripen. I've heard that from others, too. Oddly, though, I've so many ripe habaneros that shouldn't have started ripening until about now (vs. a month ago).
I am now the happy owner (via weekend preparation) of a pint (440ml) of habanero sauce consisting of about fifty of them (red and yellow) ground into paste with vinegar. Opening the jar fills the area with a combination of delightful fruity aroma and choking fumes. Early cooking experiments with this batch show the effort (seed's started indoors in late February) to be well worth it. I've likely mentioned this before, but used with care it's just a "better" hot.
If anyone wants to ask - no I haven't tried any of the new ultra hots, such as scorpion pepper and seven-pot peppers. I've heard they're difficult to grow (longer season than I have) and I haven't figured out exactly what I'd do with them - especially if I have a pile of them. Ten times hotter than insanely hot - well, perhaps to discourage dogs as to where is a good place to sniff-and-go ?
You're quite right about the reaper (I just went looking for that info):
Carolina Reaper plants take roughly 90 days to get to the point of sexual maturity, which is when they will be ready to produce fruit. Plant size: When planted in the ground or a suitably large container, Carolina Reaper plants grow to be approximately 5 feet tall and 4 feet wide.
A similar search (and the seed package) puts my Habenaros at 100-110 days. That's why it's weird to have them ripening. I grew the 90-day variety a couple of years ago and late August was the start.
Slow germination doesn't bother me - I grow cactus from seeds. Probably start indoors in January - if I knew what I'd do with them one I had them. On the other hand - you planted the it's-doable seed in my head (pun intended).
I reread the blurb - that 90 days is "ready to produce fruit" - implying they still have to set fruit, grow and ripen. That may just put them out of reach.
The other thing to consider if you have space indoors is to overwinter your peppers, which also means a larger yield in subsequent years.
I had multiple black walnut trees in the yard so had to plant all my peppers in pots and did this. Usually picked the biggest/healthiest looking plant of each variety and moved them indoors at the end of the season.
Practical Advice - I have to quite-tall maples shading much of the yard. The garden's a mix of in-ground (ca 10x10 feet) and a lot of very large pots (which are better known as 5-gallon buckets). They are too bulky, however, to bring indoors (let alone any wildlife they may contain) and, unfortunately for me, I have only one small south-facing window.
My best option would seem to be an extra-early start (when they're small and in pots under lamps) to give them a good head start - but the earliest safe day to put them outdoors is usually Mother's Day. That would just get them to start fruiting around mid-August. Doable if they'll ripen withing the month and autumn doesn't arrive early. It all depends, it seems, on how long the flower-grow-ripen period is (and less than full sun).
OK - let's assume I managed this. Aside from being very hot and the job-satisfaction, did they have any qualities that made the whole thing worth it?