Saturday, December 01, 2018

REAL DATIL PEPPER CHAT,... NOT A RANT, ... A CHAT.


It's been a remarkably warm fall here at PFHQ. The official start of Winter is about 20 days away and I have Datil pepper plants blooming in the pepper patch!
In December ...
It is a fitting weird gardening end to 2018 since the Spring was remarkably cool here and it took forever for the Datils to grow and start blooming.



See? That was a chat, not a rant.

Blossoms and tiny pepperlings in North Florida on December 1, 2018.
I used to be happy to still have peppers hanging in October, but unprotected plants were almost always toast by November.

Hot Christmas Tree

I picked the fully ripe peppers below this morning.
They will provide the seeds for both my next planting and for the folks who buy real Datil pepper seeds from me.






 As I picked, a light rain was falling ahead of a cold front, but I think these plants will make it through the cold air to follow.
Forecast temps are in the 30's, but we've already had two nights of near 32 F and the plants were unphased by it.

Without consciously meaning to, my Grandfather, my Dad, and I may have slowly selected for cold tolerance over our 3 generations, as we saved seeds from surviving plants late in the season.
Couple that with a warming climate and ALL of this year's crop may overwinter for a second round.
Usually, I get one or two plants to overwinter for the second year of production, but in the past, that has involved running them in and out of the house as cold fronts slide over us.

I may not have to do that this year.

If you skipped the video, here's the Cliff Notes:

  • I grow Datil Peppers handed down from my Grandfather to my Dad and now to me. 
  • I grow them in isolation from any other type of pepper to avoid even a chance of hybridization.
  • Datil Peppers are HOT, not "sweet" aka mild.
  • Ripe Datil Peppers are orange not red when ripe.
  • The 2 bullets above may have been a rant.
  • You can buy REAL Datil Pepper seeds from me by clicking on the sidebar ad or the Datil Pepper seed page on this blog or you can zip over to eBAY and look for PURE FLORIDA DATIL PEPPER SEEDS.
Eat More Datils!



Tuesday, October 30, 2018

RATSNAKE RENDEVOUS



Late Sunday, just as I was winding down a day of general garden and yard work, something delightful happened. The main task of that beautiful Fall afternoon was setting yet another very long 4x4 post in cement ... all part of my deer fence project.

The worky part was done, so I started walking around grabbing old pots, fertilizer bags, etc. The barn area had gotten a bit junky ... that happens when there are no neighbors to see it. 
So, I did a little sprucing up. (I'm not sure why we use that phrase..."sprucing up", ... are spruce trees neat and tidy?
Nobody says, "I did a little "Oaking up" or "Southern Longleaf Pining up".
... I'm wandering here ... back to Sunday...

Just as I was winding up (tempting to explore that one too..."winding up", but NO), there was this flash of deep orange near an old gate. 
Ratsnake!

I love these beauties and snatched this one up for a short visit. 
The snake was awesome, you can see that in the video. I do wonder if he wasn't a ratsnake cross. They naturally hybridize and we have about 4 species in this region. 
Whatever the case, it was a great ending to the first real Fall weather weekend of 2018.