The Other Fall Plant

The Other Fall Plant

  Yay, September’s here.  Time for fall color.  But it’s still 104°!  Too early for pansies, and mums haven’t shown up at Calverts yet.  So how can you get a little fall flavor right now—and maybe convince the weatherman to give up some better fall temperatures?  It’s hot—so get some peppers!
   These little fellas pack a lot of punch!  You get reds, oranges, yellows, deep purples, and even some variegated foliage on some varieties.       The peppers themselves can be found in various shapes, too: long and skinny, almost round, and short torpedo-shaped. The heat won’t slow them down. These beauties become available just when you need something to perk up your pots or plots until it cools off and mums and pansies rule the day.      
   Ornamental peppers are native to South America, so they are considered an annual here.  They belong to the same family that gives us the chili and sweet pepper.  Even though they are edible, they might be quite hot so maybe having them for dinner is not the best idea.  Small flowers form between the leaves first, then they will make those wonderful fruits.  The peppers often change color as they mature, ranging from yellow to almost black.  Some people tell me their peppers will re-seed when planted in their garden.  They will remain attractive as long as they are given some sun and watered when they become dry. 
   I like to gather a passel and plant them altogether for a colorful, fun look. Calverts will be stocking up on these little cuties, so come on in and pick a pepper!

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