First Chillies after self pollination

Self pollination of Chilli plants

As mentioned in my previous post, the first flowers for this years Chilli growing season have arrived . These are  on a plant that I overwintered from last year.  There is little chance of these flowers being pollinated indoors, so I self pollinated the Chilli plant. It took  a couple of weeks, but my first Chilllies of the season duly  arrived.

Self pollination of Chilli plants is not difficult. All that is required is to lightly rub a soft watercolour paint brush over the stamen of one flower and then gently dab it into the inside of another. In doing so pollen will be  lifted from the stem of the first flower, and then transferred to the Pistal  of the other.  This results in the flower becoming fertilized

Why self pollinate?

Self pollination of Chilli plants is essential for indoor plants. This is of course because bees are less likely to venture inside.  We are able to self pollinate Chilli plants because they have both sexes. By taking the pollen from a plant of  another  variant to plant  of the same species, you can create cross-breeds. It was in this way that some of the very hot hybrids  have been created. Doing this , however, is a far more intensive exercise. Progressive selective interbreeding is  required to achieve these  types of results.

While  self-pollination  is generally  necessary for indoor plants, in my experience, once the Chilli  plants are taken outside, the bees do a fine job.  There is no need for human interference . Providing  the sun is shining that is !

On another note , while I was pleased to see the Chiilies, I don’t know what this Chilli plant is. How this happened can be down to two possibilities. The first is that I lost its marker ( something that has happened before) or it is  one of the plants that I raised from a multi- seed pack with mystery contents .  The nursery that I bought the seeds from  was upfront  in stating the packet might contain any number of  different Chilli varieties. In other words a Chilli seed lucky dip. It was up  to you to  figure out what you had . My bet is it was a plant from these seeds.  I will  need to find what plant this is shortly !

What’s next?

My next  post will go into how I will  attempt to identify  the plant.  After that I will  provide an update on how tall  my Chilli plants are at this point in the season. I  will also discuss how  Chilli plants need to be hardened off  for them to go outside permanently.  The season is really starting get momentum now things are warming up in the UK.



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