Pepper Gardening 

The greatest gift of the garden is the restoration of the five senses!

We Grow Chili's Year Around

All hot peppers contain capsaicinoids, natural substances that produce a burning sensation in the mouth, causing the eyes to water and the nose to run, and even induce perspiration. Capsaicinoids have no flavor or odor, but act directly on the pain receptors in the mouth and throat. The primary capsaicinoid, capsaicin, is so hot that a single drop diluted in 100,000 drops of water will produce a blistering of the tongue.

"Capsaicinoids are found primarily in the pepper's placenta--the white "ribs" that run down the middle and along the sides of a pepper. Since the seeds are in such close contact with the ribs, they are also often hot. In the rest of the vegetable, capsaicinoids are unevenly distributed throughout the flesh, so it is likely that one part of the same pepper may be hotter or milder than another. You can reduce the amount of heat in a chili pepper by removing the ribs and seeds, but you must wear gloves while doing so.

"Capsaicinoid content is measured in parts per million. These parts per million are converted into Scoville heat units, the industry standard for measuring a pepper's punch. One part per million is equivalent to 15 Scoville units. Bell peppers have a value of zero Scoville units, whereas habaneros -- the hottest peppers--register a blistering 200,000 to 300,000.Pure capsaicin has a Scoville heat unit score of 16 million.

Image Name Scoville Units Native Regions
Peppers Habanero 100K-300K Yucatan, Caribbean
Peppers Scotch Bonnet 100K-250K Jamaica, Caribbean, Belize
Peppers Jamaican Hot 100K-200K Jamaica, other Caribbean islands
Peppers Thai 50K-100K Southeast Asia, California
Peppers Cayenne 30K-50K Louisiana, Mexico, Asia, Africa
Peppers Serrano 10K-23K Mexico, Southwest U.S.
Peppers Wax 5K-10K Mexico, California, Southwest U.S.
Peppers Jalapeno 2.5K-5K Oaxaca, Chihauhau, Texas, Southwest US
Peppers Rocotillo 1.5K-2.5K South America
Peppers Poblano 1K-1.5K Puebla, Mexico City region, California
Peppers New Mexico 500-1,000 Rio Grande Valley
Peppers Pepperoncini 100-500 Mediterranean Basin, California
Peppers Bell Pepper 0 Holland, Mediterranean Basin, California
Peppers Sweet Italian 0 Mediterranean Basin, California
Peppers Pure Capsaicin 16 Million Chemistry Labs