Pepper, Mboga (Capsicum frutescens) , packet of 50 seeds, organic

$2.95

Family:  Nightshade (Solanacea)
~30,000 Scoville Heat Units
Annual.  90 days to maturity.
(Pilipili Mboga, East African Culinary Pepper)  In Zanzibar, where this pepper was selected by indigenous people, they call it “Pilipili Mboga” which means, literally, in Swahili, “Vegetable Pepper.”  These peppers are generally consumed in the green state (their turgid greenness is handsomely accessorized with purple markations), chopped finely and served along with lime, tomato, onion and of course salt.  It is a great, not too hot pepper.  If you pick them very early, then they won’t be very hot at all, and  will taste more or less like a green bell pepper.  If you pick them further along in their maturation cycle, then sure, they get pretty hot, and you want to eat them along with other foods, not by themselves, out in the garden, under the sun, with your mouth burning, looking for a tomato to assuage the pain!  Although this type was originally sourced from Pemba, the peppers are now grown by us on our farm here in Southern Oregon.  The plant is about 2 feet tall, flat-topped, with dark green leaves, large and decorative flowers–a very heavy and trouble-free producer of peppers as per the photo.  The fruits are thin and about 3 inches long.  Here in the mountains of Southern Oregon we find that the maturation of Pilipili Mboga takes about 3 weeks longer than common Cayenne peppers, so if you want red fruit (or seed) it makes sense to get started early.  But frankly, if we can pull off a good crop here, growers in the midwest or in the South will have–NO PROBLEM getting them to mature (our nights are really cold!)  Besides, these are traditionally eaten while still green and technically unripe.  By the way, I looked long and hard for another name to call these peppers, but finally settled on the Swahili–there is no literature available that I know of that gives them any other name besides the Swahili and the Latin. Peppers prefer a scanty, even water supply, good drainage, full sun, and a long, hot summer.  Start indoors 40 to 50 days prior to the last frost.  Thin seedlings to at least 2 inches apart in the flat.  Transplant out to garden after the soil has really warmed up.  Space plants 2 feet apart.

50 Seeds/pkt., Certified Organically Grown

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