Thursday, December 1, 2011

Know your Capsicum!!!


Welcome to my Dubai based container vegetable gardening blog.

As the heading says - Know your Capsicum before buying pepper plants in Dubai.  I was out in Satwa and came across a plant shop with some pepper plants that already had flowers on them.  I asked the shopkeeper what the plants were (I knew they were pepper plants but not what kind) and he said "Chili".  I said I did not want chili peppers (being from the West we are not as big a chili pepper eaters as our friends from the subcontinent - that said Peppers orginated in South America I believe).  I must have had "I'm a big dumb Sucker" written on my forehead in his language.  He then said "Oh sir, these are Capsicum - the big ones" making a gesture of a large fruit simliar in shape and size of a bell pepper. 

I'm sure I quizzed him a bit more - even with his very limited capabilities in english - and was happy with his explaintion.  As I was in  a rush, I bought four plants because I wasn't sure such a hot item would last long time in the shop.  Since my Bell Peppers seedlings were not anywhere close to being ready to plant, I was feeling a bit smug with by new Capsicum plants.

Well, it has been a couple/three weeks now.  I have not replanted them yet as I have been busy and have not yet prepared my new pots yet.  But, some peppers have started to appear - NOT BELL PEPPERS - but non-the-less peppers as you can see!

So, to say the least I am very disappointed. I should have known better that all peppers are "Capsicum"  of some sort but after hearing & seeing bell peppers being refered to as "Capsicum" a good many times I just thought ....... well, I guess I didn't really think did I!

However, I am also ready to share some of the blame with both the supplier and shopkeeper as well. Either someone supplying the plants told the shopkeeper (the shopkeeper is just a middleman as I have seen the same plants in the same orange color pots at other shops at a different location in Dubai) was (lying)  not quite clear on what he was supplying about his product or the shopkeeper was (lying)  not quite clear on what he was selling or I do have "Sucker"  written in many languages on my forehead!!!  Even Ms. Bubba leaves me in the car or I have to keep my distance from her so that she does not get over charged when we go to the Deira Vegetable/Fish market.

This lead me to googling "Capsicum" .  There are three types of Capsicum - the one we are all familiar with both sweet & chili types is Capsicum Annuum with images of these peppers.  The others are Capsicum Frutescens with images of these peppers and Capsicum Chinense with images of these peppers.  If you are dsyleic like me it's Chinence not Chinese!

So, then I looked at my pepper seed packets and the ones from the USA say Capscum Annuum for the bell peppers but the other seed packets from Europe do not mention anything other than Pepper.

Here is a picture of another pepper plant I bought a couple of months ago that made some purple color peppers but never got big and stop producing more.  Does anybody have a clue as to what is the name of this pepper and the other lite color one above. Much appreicate the help!!!

So, I guess the moral of the story is plant your own seeds so you know what you are getting (if anything comes up), or become multilingual (so you can see how many languages you have Sucker written on your forhead) and/or find a trustworthy shopkeeper that knows what he is buying from vendors or what he is selling to you.

A little humor for the day.

With some more of the same here!

Thanks for stopping in.


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