Which varieties of chili should I cultivate?
There are approx. 3,000 chili varieties in all levels of spiciness, in colour shades from red to yellow/orange to violet, and with diverse growth requirements. Thus, the choice is difficult. For this reason, we have put together several basic questions and categorised the corresponding varieties.
When thinking about which varieties to grow, there are three important things to consider:
How spicy do I like it?
Mild: Californian Wonder (0), Friggitello (0), Corno di Toro (0), Cuneo Giallo (0), Lombardo (0), Aji Dulce (1), Anaheim (2), Ancho San Luis Mexican Large (2)
Medium: Apache Chili (4), Inferno (4), Pasilla (4), Ciliegia Piccante (5), Purple Tiger Chili (5), Jalapeño (5)
Spicy: De Arbol (6), Jamy Chili (6), Cayenne Golden (6), Bulgarian Carrot (6), Serrano (6), Bishops Crown (6), Hot Portugal (6), Bulgarian Carrot (6-7), Orange Lantern (7), Mushroom Yellow (7), Lemon Drop (7), Aji Cristal (7), Thai Dragon (7), Tennessee Teardrop (7)
Very spicy: Tabasco (8), Cayenne (8), Thai Orange Hot (8), Peter Pepper (8), Manzano Rocoto (8), Rainforest (8), Joe’s Long Cayenne (8), Birgit’s Locoto (8), Tepin (8), Manzano Rocoto Aji Largo (9), Pimenta de Neyde (9), Pequin (9), Bird Pepper wild (9)
Extreme: Fatalii (10), Habanero (10), Aji Habanero (10), Scotch Bonnet (10), Carolina Reaper (10+), Trinidad Scorpion Butch T. (10+), Trinidad Scorpion Moruga (10+), Bih Jolokia (10+), Naga Morich (10+), 7 Pod red (10+)
Where should/can the chillies grow? (Listing with ascending spiciness)
On the balcony / terrace / in the greenhouse: Basically, you can grow all chillies in pots or buckets as long as they are not too large. The varieties with longer ripening times are better kept in pots so that they can be brought inside in autumn and the fruits can continue to ripen. These include the Orange Lantern, Tabasco, Tepin, Cayenne, Pequin, Habanero, Scotch Bonnet, Bhut Jolokia, Trinidad Scorpion, Naga Morich, 7 Pod Red.
In the garden: All (annual) varieties which ripen in 50 to 80 days, such as the Jalapeño Early Chili, Ciliegia Piccante, Purple Tiger Chili, Serrano, Bulgarian Carrot, Tabasco, and large growing varieties like the Sweet Pepper, Californian Wonder, Orange Wonder, Corno di Toro, Long Yellow Ringo, Friggitello, Aji Habanero are suitable for growing in the garden.
In the house or apartment: For cultivation indoors you should choose varieties which remain relatively small but still have sufficient levels of spiciness, such as the Apache Chili, Purple Tiger, Ciliegia Piccante, Serrano, Tennessee Teardrop, Orange Lantern, Tabasco, Thai Orange, Pequin, Habanero Gambia.
What do I want to do with the chillies? (Listing with ascending spiciness)
Fresh: Chilies with an exceptional or fruity taste and thick or juicy fruit walls are particularly suitable for fresh consumption, such as: Lombardo, Corno di Toro, Long Yellow Ringo, Californian Wonder, Friggitello, Aji Dulce, Anaheim, Apache, Jalapeños, Jamy Chili, Bishops Crown, Serrano, Lemon Drop, Tabasco, Rocoto Manzano Orange/ Yellow/ Locoto, Habanero, Aji Habanero, Scotch Bonnet
Drying: Pasilla, Joe’s Long Cayenne, Cayenne, Thai Orange, Trinidad Scorpion Butch T., Carolina Reaper, Trinidad Scorpion Moruga, Naga Morich, 7 Pod Red
Chili Powder: Lemon Drop, Cayenne, Thai Orange, Scotch Bonnet, Habanero, Carolina Reaper, Trinidad Scorpion Moruga, Bhut Jolokia, 7 Pod Red
Cooking: Friggitello, Corno di Toro, Californian Wonder, Aji Dulce, Anaheim, Jamy Chili, Serrano, Thai Dragon, Orange Lantern, Lemon Drop, Tabasco, Thai Orange, Rocoto Manzano Orange/Yellow/Locoto
Stuffing: Corno di Toro, Californian Wonder, Friggitello, Aji Dulce, Anaheim, Inferno, Ciliegia Piccante, Jalapeño, Jamy Chili, Bishops Crown, Tennessee Teardrop, Rocoto Manzano Orange/Yellow/Locoto
Grilling: Long Yellow Ringo, Californian Wonder, Friggitello, Anaheim, Ciliegia Piccante, Jamy Chili, Bishops Crown, Aji Cristal, Tennessee Teardrop
Pickling: Lombardo, Friggitello, Inferno, Jalapeño, Purple Tiger, Jamy, Bishops Crown, Serrano, Tennessee Teardrop, Orange Lantern, Aji Cristal, Peter Pepper
For garden designers and interior decorations, the decorative chili varieties may also be of interest:
Red: Californian Wonder, Lombardo, Apache Chili, Inferno, Ciliegia Piccante, Serrano, Bishops Crown, De Arbol, Tennessee Teardrop, Tabasco, Thai Dragon, Tabasco, Pequin, Habanero Red, Trinidad Scorpion red , 7 Pod Red, Naga Morich Red
Orange: Orange Wonder, Bulgarian Carrot, Orange Lantern, Thai Orange, Peter Pepper, Habanero Orange, Aji Dulce, Manzano Rocoto Orange, Bih Jolokia Orange
Violet: Purple Tiger, Serrano Purple, Pimenta de Neyde, Habanero Purple
Yellow: Yellow Ringo, Cuneo Giallo, Lemon Drop, Mushroom Yellow, Manzano Rocoto Yellow, Habanero Yellow, Scotch Bonnet Yellow, Long 7 Pod yellow, Trinidad Scorpion Yellow, Naga Morich Yellow
Brown: Pasilla, Habanero Chocolate