I'm trying some Mariachi Peppers this year. Mariachi is a 2003 hybrid, and I got the seeds from Tomato Grower's Supply.
I've got the PMMV virus in my garden soil, making it impossible to grow bell peppers and causing poor production in mild OP hot peppers like Poblano and Anaheim. I do real well with hybrid non-bell sweet peppers, though, such as Gypsy, Carmen, and Bounty.
Since Mariachi is a hybrid non-bell and similar in appearance to the sweet hybrids that grow well for me, I think it may work in my garden. Mariachi is similar to Santa Fe Grande, but Mariachi has only about 500 Scoville units as opposed to 5000 for S.F.G. Mariachi has thick walls, and I think it might be real good in salsas and for chiles rellenos.
I haven't tried these yet, but I was thinking about giving the a go this season. My bells never go great guns, so I'm hoping to find a substitute. I will be trying Gypsy this year for the first time, and will probably plant the Pont du Paris again.
After I started having trouble growing some peppers (especially bells) I read up on it.
Pepper Mild Mottle Virus (PMMV) is VERY common, and once you've got it in the soil, you've got it.
It doesn't kill pepper plants, but it hurts production greatly and the few peppers that are produced often have soft spots. Leaves on the plants are droopy and limp, and often drop off while they're still green. Early symptoms are crinkly new-growth leaves on seedlings - and I know that's how I brought the virus home because I often see such leaves on pepper seedlings offered in big-box retail stores (now that I know what to look for).
PMMV doesn't seem to bother non-bell sweet peppers like Carmen, Gypsy, Bounty, and Sweet Spot. Very hot peppers don't seem to be affected by it, either. I've had it ruin mildly-hot peppers like Poblano and Anaheim, though, and I'm hoping the mildly-hot Mariachi will be immune to PMMV.
Since the peppers I've had success with are all hybrids, and Mariachi is a hybrid, that may be the answer right there. It's not the complete answer though, because I know PMMV won't let me grow bell peppers, hybrid or not.
I picked one of my first Mariachi peppers to set on yesterday, it was about 1 1/2" long and light green. I brought it inside, washed it off, and my wife and I tasted it. I was wondering about the heat level.
Surprisingly, it had a good flavor but NO heat. None. I hope they're not going to be like that, because I've got plenty of sweet peppers planted.
I think, and hope, that the "heat" in these mildly-hot peppers will develop later. The one we tasted was real new and young. What do you think?
I think they will develop heat as they go along. I ofter use my hot peppers as sweet peppers when they are babies (if I have an abundance), though they are kind of a non-flavor issue at that point, mostly just add crunch!
I grew Mariachi the past 2 years (just a couple of plants each year), and they did well... I really liked the flavor, very sweet (picked them red) with just a little "zing" of heat. They'd be great to use for a mild salsa.
Hey, critter - good to hear from you, and I'm glad to hear what you and Sequee say about Mariachi. My wife and I are thinking those will be great for salsa, mild poppers, and chile rellenos.
I've got kind of a "critter" pepper garden going again this year - Carmen and Gypsy are the stars of course. I've also got Planet, a parthenocarpic variety that's setting on peppers like crazy, plus Mariachi.
I just transplanted my Italian Basil plants into the garden today - I save seeds every season from the Basil variety you sent me 3 or 4 years ago. It's great!
My Italian basil will be planted out tomorrow! I'm glad you enjoy it like we do. Hopefully I'll be able to save lots of seeds to share this year. Last summer was kind of a bust, garden-wise. But, forward ever! Our summer is off to a great start, hope yours is also!
My wife has been making chiles rellenos out of the Mariachi peppers in my garden. It's a team effort - she tells me how many chiles to pick and I scorch the skins on our outdoor barbecue. Then she gets the skins off and makes the rellenos.
We had a long, hot summer - and while Mariachi isn't the hottest of peppers, these will surely get your attention. They're nose-running, forehead-sweating, need-a-glass-of-ice-water-nearby JUST RIGHT. Good stuff!
Before our first frost I'll pick all the Mariachi peppers off the plants, and there are a bunch of them. I guess I'll fire up the barbecue, scorch and remove the skins, and de-seed them. Then I'm trying to figure out how best to freeze them. They'll be soft and we won't be able to retain the shape for stuffing as rellenos, but that dish could be made as a casserole just as well. So long as the ingredients are the same, the shape shouldn't matter.
I'm thinking to just freeze them together in quart freezer bags with no wax paper or anything between them. The peppers will freeze together, but that shouldn't hurt anything. Any suggestions about this?
I've frozen cut-up peppers for stew etc., and my brother says he just puts whole peppers into a freezer bag sometimes (probably only for a short time) when he has a couple extra ones. Cooked, stuffed peppers freeze just fine, too.
I just picked the last of my Mariachi peppers. Red, yellow, or in between, I picked the plants clean because they may not all have time to ripen now. Lots of different pepper varieties can be used in Chiles Rellenos, but we've found the "heat" in Mariachi to be just right for us. I'll be growing a few Mariachi plants every year from now on.
I brought our propane cooker, which is usually used for fish frys, our sweet corn harvest, and brewing beer, on to our patio. I took a grill off our barbecue, put it over the flame of the cooker, and had a real efficient way to roast the skins off peppers a dozen or so at a time. I roast the peppers until the skins are black, then put them in a closed pot with a lid. My wife leaves them to steam in the closed pot for 10 minutes after I'm done, then she dumps the peppers into a sink-full of ice water. The skins slide right off.
She's making two big dishes of chiles rellenos tonight, one for us and one for #3 daughter and her family. The rest of the skinless Mariachi peppers will be frozen so we can have more of this dish through the winter.
There are a lot of Hybrid Anaheims and Poblano/Ancho Hybrids out there that are virus resistant.
Most popular or commercial pepper varieties have a hybrid that was developed specifically to be bullet proof from viruses and to be super productive.
The only thing is you'll probably have to buy seeds for them every year.Most aren't stable hybrids.
You could try keeping cuttings to start at the end of the season for next year though but buying seeds would be less work and cheeper.
With non bell peppers becomming so popular,more and more varieties are being developed to be disease resistant.
Smokemaster, you're right... I've been going more and more to hybrid pepper strains, both for sweet and for hot peppers. I don't *think* I've had a particular problem with disease, but the hybrid varieties seem to be so much more productive for me.
I just renewed my membership.
Been too broke for a year for luxuries...
I only grow peppers,non bell peppers and most non bells I've grown are more productive than regular bells and in general are better tasting.
Only problem with Hybrids is some are stable or will grow true or change while keeping their virus immunity but you won't know until you grow the f1 or f2 seeds out.
In general I think a lot of the Hybrids are at least somewhat stable these days.
They are just selling the F2 as a different strain to save or make $.
I'd almost bet that a Piment/Pimento Tangerine will out produce and taste better than any bell out there.It's pod is about a 2+ inch ball.Very productive,thick fleshed.
With the internet I think Bells eventually will be something thats not as popular in gardens after people check out the sweet chile/pepper varieties available these days.
Trading seeds,pure or O.P. doesn't matter.
Sweet is sweet and hot is hot...up to the grower as to what they like.
People that grow their own want stuff they like to eat-pickled,dried(whole,flakes or powder)
People either care about the heat and or flavor they want in general along with the ease of growing them..
Seed venders or whatever sell stuff to make $ only.
With E Bay you get screwed in general.
Just because your local nursery or seed vender doesn't sell what you are looking for check out the pepper sites.
You might find something to grow you like better.
I'm not into growing Hybrids except for Rocopica-The plant won't pollinate itself.Needs a Pubescens or Eximun to put out pods.
I have a 3-4 yr old rocopica that never put out a pod yet.
With the seed trades I do I get a large percentage of crosses and new varieties to grow.
My Problem is that when I first started growing peppers I couldn't decide what to grow.
I decided to grow them all.
Now I have to many peppers but too little growing space.
Interesting... I've thought about growing out some of my favorite non-bell hybrids for a few generations but figured that buying a few seed packets every few years was a better bet for me than giving garden space to too many "maybes."
I'm totally with you on non-bell sweet peppers. :-)
I assumed peppers were like tomatoes. That all the hybrids were F1 and the seeds,even if isolated, would not come true. It's really good to have you back,Smokemaster, Ive been wondering about you. Glad your OK
Seeds from Hybrids technically won't grow true.
But a lot are really close to the hybrid a lot of times.
I've had different Jalapeno hybrids grow peppers that looked the same as the hybrid for years from the hybrids seeds.
I've also had seeds from a hybrid grow anaheim looking pods from the seeds from the hybrid.
It is a crap shoot in general.
Some I'd consider stable,but the stable ones they rename because once it's stablized it's considered a strain or new variety.
To get a stable cross I think to get a 90%+ rate of stability you have to grow it out about 8+ times minimum-if I remember right.
If you have to have the hybrid,don't use seeds from a hybrids pods.
I don't know what the actual probability is of getting something close to the hybrid.
It probably depends on what was used to make the original Hybrid.
If a bunch of Jalapeno strains were crossed together to make a hybrid jalapeno you'll probably get some form of jalapeno.
Like above,one hybrid jalapeno I grew seeds from had anaheim type peppers from the jalapeno hybrids seeds.
Once its considered a stable stain,that comes true to seed isn't it open-pollenated and no longer a hybrid? I grow very few hybrids for personal use but I will grow any plant that sells. On that note do any of you have any suggestions on pepper plants or should I start a new thread?
Thats what I meant about once something grows out and becomes stable they call it a strain or new variety.
I think a lot of us backyard breeders like to call something a stable cross so we can bring up the fact that we did the cross and growouts ourselves...
Just giving something a name and leaving it at that would ruin all the fun of getting credit for the Hybrid,strain or new variety. :)
Gotta brag about our Super Duper sweet as heck,crisp and crunchy,insanely productive pepper that practically plants and grows all by itself.
It also eats nasty bugs like a venus fly trap.
I just got a cool cross going myself over the years.
It started out with a habanero de arbol (ChinenseXBaccatum I think)X Aji Red(baccatum).
Last year it croosed with a & pot yellow.
This year it puts out upright pods that look like 7 pot long and has baccatum flowers(gold specks in the flower.
None are ripe yet so I don't know the color yet when ripe.
Could be Orange(tree hab.) red (color of the first cross) or yellow from the 7 pot.
Very productive plant.Lots of hybrid vigor.
How the heck do you name something like that? LOL
Gonna have to be creative.
Might get another cross though.
I put a branch of my Guyanna PI 199506 next to a branch of the hybrid.
Guyanna is a Cayenne looking Baccatum that ripens yellow.
Very,Very productive,bullet proof plant-super hardy.
Then I think I'll back cross it again with the tree hab next year.
I'd like a super productive tree (tree hab grows 12+ ft tall and wide)with 7 pot heat and large pods.
Yellow color would be cool.
Now to get the Venus Fly trap traits in it...Hmmmm.
There are several White Habs out there.
Most are small raisin shaped pepper-C.Chinense(there is a Baccatum called Aji Habanero).
Most are a yellow/white but some are pure white.
There is also a bigger one too.
I have seeds for several white habaneros,most aren't pure white.But they are white rather than yellow.
Off hand there are generic white habs,Peruvian White,White lightning,and an unknown one I got that has round rather than raisin shaped pods.
Maybe this should be a new thread.
I'll see what pics I have and start a ne w thread.
I can take pics of the Guyanna if I remember tomorrow.It's loaded with pods right now.
All green but tons of them...