(Capsicum chinense) These bright, glossy Red Habanero peppers really bring the heat! These can be twice as hot as the common orange habanero, but their heat is still complemented with the citrusy, smoky flavor that makes habaneros irresistible. Brings unrivaled flavor to salsas and makes a perfect hot sauce. Plants grow about 18” tall and are heavy producers of lantern-shaped 2” fruit.
400,000 Scoville Heat Units (extremely hot).
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Start pepper plants indoors about 6-8 weeks before your last frost date. Sow 1-2 seeds 1/4" deep into individual containers filled with seed starting formula. Keep moist. Heated germination mats can help keep soil warmer for better germination. Transplant after seedlings have shown several sets of true leaves and only once you are sure the outside soil temperature is consistently above 65.
To get an early start with your peppers, cover the prepared bed with a dark colored polyethylene mulch or tarp at least a week before transplanting. This will heat the soil beneath and provide a better growing condition for young pepper plants.
Peppers are easily damaged when heavy with fruit. For support, tie the plants to stakes.
Harvest when mature size, and firm. Most peppers can be harvested at an immature stage when they are still green, or left to develop to yellow or red. Hot varieties are hottest just when they begin to turn from green to red. When harvesting hot peppers, take care to avoid touching the interior of any broken peppers, as the capsaicin is an extreme irritant, especially to the eyes. Wash hands thoroughly after harvesting, or wear gloves to harvest peppers.