The Chile Tepin Plant: The Complete Guide and Care Tips
If you’re a fan of adding spice to your meals, then the chile tepin is definitely worth considering.
This pepper plant may be small in size, but it packs quite a punch in terms of flavor and heat.
It’s no wonder that both gardeners and chefs love growing this fiery little pepper! With our comprehensive guide on how to grow and care for the chile tepin, you’ll have everything you need to get started with cultivating this wonderful plant.Aside from being easy to grow, the chile tepin also has several health benefits.
Its spicy properties help boost metabolism and promote digestion, making it an ideal addition to any meal plan.
So whether you’re looking for a new gardening project or simply want to add some heat to your dishes, there’s no doubt that the chile tepin is an excellent choice!
What is Chile Tepin?
Chile Tepin, also known as Bird’s Eye Pepper, is a small but spicy chili pepper originating from Mexico.
It has been cultivated for thousands of years in Central America and parts of South America.
What makes this chilli unique is its heat level which can go up to 100,000-250,000 Scoville units – making it hotter than jalapeños or serranos.
Chile Tepin plants are relatively easy to grow in warm climates with well-draining soil.
They prefer full sun exposure but can tolerate partial shade in hotter regions.
The ideal temperatures range from 70°F/21°C during the day and 60-65°F/16-18°C at night while humidity should be kept low as they are prone to fungal diseases.
- Soil: Sandy loam soil that drains well with pH levels between 6 -7 will help your plant thrive.
- Sunlight: Full sun exposure (6-8 hours per day) is recommended though they tolerate partial shade too.
- Watering: Water when the top inch of soil feels dry ensuring not to overwater them leading them susceptible to root rotting issues.
Planting Chile Tepin
Chile Tepin can be grown from seeds or seedlings.
The best time to plant these peppers is in the spring after the last frost has passed.
For starting indoors, sow seeds 6-8 weeks before transplanting outdoors in well-draining soil and direct sowing should be done once the temperature remains above 60°F/16°C.
- Spacing: Space each plant about 18-24 inches apart to allow for proper airflow and growth.
- Fertilizing: Use organic fertilizer once a month for better yield and healthier plants.
- Pests and Diseases: Keep an eye out for aphids, spider mites or whiteflies which can be treated with insecticidal soap.
As mentioned earlier they are prone to fungal diseases such as anthracnose so avoid overwatering them while maintaining good air circulation around the plants.
The Chile Tepin fruit size ranges between .5 – .75 inch/1.25 -1.9 cm diameter, turning from green to red when ripe but some variants may have yellow or orange color at maturity stage too after approximately 90 days of planting them out in open areas while indoor ones take longer due to lower light intensity levels compared to outdoors yielding less heat levels as residue ripening of pods also takes place on matured plants where unripened pods gradually turn reddish-brown hue over time if not harvested on time.
The fruits are best harvested by handpicking when they turn red, leaving a small stem intact attached giving it longer shelf life (up-to two years) than other chilies that dry faster but do wear gloves when harvesting as they can cause skin burns and irritations if not handled carefully.
Uses of Chile Tepin
Chile tepin is a versatile pepper that can be used for various culinary dishes, sauces, marinades or as a garnish.
They are particularly ideal for Mexican cuisine such as salsa, pico de gallo, or in stews and soups.
Their heat level packs a punch but also releases fruity notes when savored giving them unique flavors compared to other chilies.
If you’re looking for an easy-to-grow pepper plant that packs heat and flavor into every bite, the chile tepin is an excellent choice.
Take care to provide the right growing conditions and harvest your fruit at the right time to enjoy its full potential in your meals!