What Peppers and Tomatoes are you Starting for 2012?

Phoenix, AZ(Zone 9b)

This conversation was started in the Tomato forum but the thread is getting long so let's continue here.

For peppers, I've started:
Aji Limon
Orange Habenero
Big Jim
Kung Pao
Vaquero (a jalapeno)
Costeno Amarillo

Two new tomatoes, for me this year are:
Riesentraube - a cherry
Momotaro - getting great reviews here on DG

What's growing in your garden this season? Ranging beyond tomatoes and peppers is okay with the topic starter, OT rules are suspended. ;-)

Thumbnail by MaryMcP
Charleston, SC(Zone 8b)

Tomatoes -my favorite- purple cherokee, a plum called principe borghese- new for me but had roasted plum tomatoes last fall that were fantastic with goat cheese. A costoluto genovese, another heirloom, this one red and wavy edged, and finally a brownish tomato called kumato- we have been buying them all winter so I thought I'd try to grow the seeds. I can plant fairly early here so all will go out to harden off in the next few weeks.
Peppers are a banana called godfather- had good sucess last year and an heirloom called quadrato d' asti russo- a red bell

I no longer have the huge garden space nor the people to eat that much, but am always interested in other varieties.

Shawnee Mission, KS(Zone 6a)

Here is the list of what we are growing. Most of it is from seeds with a few plants thrown in. We also have a number of perennial herbs in the yard already. We should start planting seeds the next couple of weekends. Although we've just got told that we've moved from Zone 5 to Zone 6 so I guess I better at what impact that might have on the planting dates.

Basil: Genovese - Organic

Beets: Red Ace - Organic
Beet greens: Early Wonder Tall Top

Begonia: White Baby Wing
Dragon Wing

Bok Choy: Toy Choi
Violetta Pac Choi

Broccoli Raab: Sessantina Grossa
Spring Raab

Calendula: Orange Zinger (Hardy Annual)

Carrots: Caracas

Chamomile: German

Coleus: Versa Burgundy to Green

Collards: Georgia Southern

Cover Crop: Soil Builder Peas/oats

Dill: Mammoth -Organic

Eggplant: Orient Express

Garlic: TBD

Impatients: Accent Mystic Mix

Kale: Winterbor

Kohlrabi: Eder

Leeks: Lancelot

Lemon Grass: West Indian

Lettuce: Black Seeded Simpson
Flashy Troutback Romain
Wildfire Lettuce Mix (oakleaf)
Provençal Winter Mix

Mache: Big Seeded

Melon: Bit o' Honey

Nasturtium: Jewel mix

Parsley: Giant From Italy

Peas: Dwarf Grey Sugar Pea (snow)
Tom Thumb (Shell)
Sugar Bon (snap)

Peppers: Roumanian Rainbow

Radish: Easter Egg
Ping Pong

Sage: Pineapple Sage (Salvia elegans)
Mexican Sage (Salvia leucantha 'Santa Barbara PP12949' )

Spinach: Space

Tomatoes: Brandywine (Sudduth's)
Black Cherry
Box Car Willie
Kellog's Breakfast

Watermelons: Sunshine
Sugar Baby
Crimson Sweet - organic

Zinnia: Zahara Double Fire
Zahara Double Cherry
Zahara Starlight Rose

This message was edited Feb 2, 2012 8:21 AM

Nauvoo, AL(Zone 7a)

I am not crazy about Hot peppers. I only need a few for a little spice.
Trying out the hot Peter Pepper.
Love Fooled You jalapeno.
Growing Big Bertha Bell, Super Heavyweight Bell.
I like growing big veggies.
(even giant pumpkins)

As for the whole garden...the list is a mile long and i would be here all day.

Shawnee Mission, KS(Zone 6a)

We've put ours into a spread sheet. Makes it easy copy the list or to track orders are filled and what gets planted next.

What is your favorite hot and non-hot pepper?

A former boss was into growing giant pumpkins and entering them in competitions. The competition part explains his personnality alot.

Richland, WA(Zone 7b)

Mary, thanks for starting this thread-

Shawnee Mission, KS(Zone 6a)

Same Here. Thanks for starting the thread.

Phoenix, AZ(Zone 9b)

You are both (all) very welcome.....I look forward to seeing lots of new idea......like I need those. Susan, you're amazing. And I though *I* needed a 12-step program for a mere 'home gardener'.

My favorite hot pepper, at least so far, is the little tiny round chiltepins. They dry quickly and easily then I grind and put them in a shaker. Unfortunatly, the birds REALLY like these too so it's a battle to get to them first.

It seems there is more than one variety of chilteping because I keep telling the folks I order from "Do not substiute." but I get other plants than what I really wanted. For a long time I thought they were sending my Birds Eye peppers because they grow straight up, but the packing list calls them a certain chiltepin - don't have the details handy.

Charlotte, NC(Zone 7b)

I copied and pasted this from my seed order from Johnny's:

Monica (F1) (OG)-Packet
Vegetables > Tomatoes > Saladette and Sauce > Determinate

Royal Burgundy (OG)-Packet
Vegetables > Beans > Beans, Bush > Purple, Round Pod

Arcadia (F1)-Packet
Vegetables > Broccoli > Hybrid

Green Magic (F1)-Packet
Vegetables > Broccoli > Hybrid

Tasty Bites (F1)-Packet
Vegetables > Melons > Cantaloupe > Hybrid

Sugar Sprint-Packet
Vegetables > Peas > Snap

Ace (F1)-Packet
Vegetables > Peppers > Sweet Bell > Green-to-Red Bells > Hybrid

Sweet Bite (F1)-Packet
Vegetables > Watermelon > Triploid/Seedless

Herbs > Basil > Pesto

Giant of Italy-Packet
Herbs > Parsley

I have also purchased/ordered Vardeman sweet potatoes, Candy onions, Alaska peas, Australian brown onion.

Seeds have been exchanged with DG members

And then there's seeds left over from years past...


Nauvoo, AL(Zone 7a)

I don't have the right soil to grow competition giant pumpkins. It would take me years to build it up. I just like watching them grow. The prettiest giant leaves. And, I eat the culls(6 to 10 days old) and prepare them like you do crookneck squash. So Yummy Big round sliced circles of young pumpkin, battered and fried.

Spring is around the corner.

Shawnee Mission, KS(Zone 6a)

LOL I've seen another avid gardener's list recently and it was 8-10 items. Since then I've been wondering if I maybe need to cut back a bit. It seems like there is always some plant/veggie out there that we ran across at a local market or restaurant and want to try growing ourselves. It does have to produce or it gets skipped/replaced the next season.

It's a garden for two so think smaller quantities. We plant smaller rows and only 8-12 tomato plants. Any extras we give out to the neighborhood or food pantry. We set up as much as we can so the garden running and seed starting is easy. Flowers on the other hand are in much larger quantities. I'm also thinking I need to start putting in more perennials and less annuals grown from seed.

I haven’t heard of chiltepin peppers before. Is that a warm climate pepper and how hot is it?

Honeybee- The Tasty Bites looks interesting. What do you like about it and how well does it grow for you?

CricketGarden - Sounds interesting on the pumpkin culls. I didn't know you could eat those. So tell me more about them. Are they green or orange? How big is a pumpkin cull on a giant pumpkin? How big do your giant pumpkins get?

Phoenix, AZ(Zone 9b)

Chiltepin is very hot. If you can grow other peppers you should be able to grow that one. Want some seeds to try? Be happy to enable!!

Shawnee Mission, KS(Zone 6a)

LOL. So your thinking my list is not long enough and happy to help resolve that issue?

Nauvoo, AL(Zone 7a)

My pumpkins have never gotten giant. The squash vine borers make sure that I don't. The biggest was 310 lbs. An actual joke compared to world record. The culls are about the size of a cantaloupe up to a basketball. Their color is pale orange, pale yellow. Pumpkins get darker as they get older. I want to grow a green one.....squash, real bad. I have the seed. I know the key to protecting the pumpkin vines from SVB is by covering the vine but I always manage to miss an area and also not suppose to cover a certain amount of the vine near the trunk. I seriously thought about covering the plant with 30 percent shade cloth this year and see what happens.........the giant pumpkins are a huge subject all by itself.

Phoenix, AZ(Zone 9b)

Susan - you betcha!!

Re: SVB - I have successfully battled these buggers by feeding the new vines through empty toilet paper rolls, then push the carboard roll into the [wet] soil for at least half an inch. Really. It works. Before that I was running the new vine through a piece of panty hose but the cardboard rolls are easier. It's my understanding that the SVB lies its eggs within a couple of inches of where the stem emerges from the soil. So if you can stop them there, they are stopped. Here's the Wiki link.


another interesting link with a YouTube video that I don't have time to watch right now.


Nauvoo, AL(Zone 7a)

That was a good info link
I currently have 4 Giant Pumpkin DVDs from Holland Giants, One DVD by Joe, and all three Giant Pumpkin books by Marvin.
I went all out. Even as to pay $100 for a pack of seed. I have not tried growing anything in two years. Been building a home after the fire.
I want to grow this year but not sure If I should. I have the shade cloth. I have the seed. I have the books and DVDs. I even have a hoist.
I don't have the right soil for a giant but I do have soil. I have whole fish too. That 310 pound I grew actually aborted on day 35 after pollination.

Nauvoo, AL(Zone 7a)

maybe I should start a Pumpkin/Squash topic??? or leave it here???

Irving, TX(Zone 8a)

"I have successfully battled these buggers by feeding the new vines through empty toilet paper rolls"
when do you do that?
when the vine is small ?

I had to start squash/cuke seeds indoorr because pill bugs will eat them ...

Nauvoo, AL(Zone 7a)

i don't understand the concept of the toilet paper rolls down a long vine.
I better make sure I cover every inch with soil this year and with the shade cloth draped over the plant too. (screen)

Nauvoo, AL(Zone 7a)

I do like the stocking idea wrapped around the vine where I cannot cover the vines with soil.

2 years ago.

This message was edited Feb 3, 2012 1:04 PM

Thumbnail by CricketsGarden
Phoenix, AZ(Zone 9b)

drthor - yes, when the vine is young. The Wiki article says the SVB lays its eggs in on the first 2" out of the soil but they [apparently] don't go any further than that so if you can keep the SVB from laying the eggs when the vine first emerges, you're good. At least in theory!!

crickets....same thing as above. You don't have to do the entire vine, just the first couple of inches.

Stockings work really well too, they are just not as easy to place around the vine, at least for me.

Nauvoo, AL(Zone 7a)

Mary. The SVB does lay its eggs all along the Vines. Bush is different.

They even say it in the Link you posted.
"""Prevention includes pesticides to kill the adult moth (such use must not contaminate the flowers, as pollinators would be killed by poisoned nectar or pollen). Organic controls include wrapping the lower stem with nylon stockings or aluminum foil to prevent egg laying, which generally occurs within a couple inches from the point where the stem emerges from the soil. Row covers can be used up until bloom. An old gardener trick for vining squash and pumpkin cultivars is to cover the vine with earth at various points along its length, inducing rooting at several points, thereby continuing to feed the developing fruit despite the loss of the original stem. It may be noted that after the vine has taken root at multiple points, the infected portion of the plant can be cut off, along with another inch where the larvae is eating into healthy tissue, without significant damage to the plant."""

I guess the part that is misunderstood is..... on """ Vining plants""" there are leaf stalks all down the long vine. The SVB is laying eggs at the junction of every leaf joint stem and along the vine itself which means the whole vine has to be buried or covered
This is not an issue with the Bush plants which only need little protection.

Phoenix, AZ(Zone 9b)

Thanks for the clarification...I had not understood it that way. I love the zucc plants but did get completely wiped out one year by that bugger.

Shawnee Mission, KS(Zone 6a)

Cricketgarden - That blossum looks huge. How big do they get?

Nauvoo, AL(Zone 7a)

it was huge. I never measured them but i would say the blooms are as wide or wider than a cereal bowl.

Charlotte, NC(Zone 7b)

SusanKC -

Tasty Bites looks interesting. What do you like about it and how well does it grow for you?

Here's what Johnny's site says about Tasty Bites:

Personal-size melon.

Tasty Bites is an innovative new type of melon bred by crossing an ananas and a charantais. The result is a very sweet, rich, aromatic, cantaloupe-like melon with an above-average shelf life. Fruits are round to oval with an attractive netting and avg 1 3/4-2 1/2 lbs. Harvest when skin is yellowish orange and the fruits slip from the vines. Fruits ripen over an extended harvest period making this a good choice for market growers. Avg. 17,400 seeds/lb. Packet: 20 seeds.

I produced so many of these last summer that I gave many away to neighbors. I also cut off the rind and froze the flesh. They are unbelievably sweet!

It is easy to tell when they are ripe, they turn a yellowish orange and slip from the vine - just like Johnny's description.

Shawnee Mission, KS(Zone 6a)

HoneybeeNC - Hum. We may have to try those next year. They sound wonderful. We had a good couple of years with the bit a honey but the seeds are harder to find.

Cricket - are you eating the blooms also?

Gainesville, FL(Zone 8b)

...and the thread drifts away like oak pollen on a spring breeze...kachoo! ;o)

Seriously, you gotta be quick. I just found this thread on starting tomatoes and peppers, and that conversation apparently stopped a while back. Why don't we just start a dozen threads and call them all "Random thoughts about stuff"?

Yeah, just kidding...


Phoenix, AZ(Zone 9b)

Yep. We went south pretty early on. As the topic starter, I'll just say I'm okay with rambling conversations. That's usually how it goes face-to-face. We may come back around to tomatoes and peppers at some point, but it's certainly not mandatory. Carry on.....

Gainesville, FL(Zone 8b)

Quote from MaryMcP :
Yep. We went south pretty early on. As the topic starter, I'll just say I'm okay with rambling conversations. That's usually how it goes face-to-face. We may come back around to tomatoes and peppers at some point, but it's certainly not mandatory. Carry on.....

I guess my bigger gripe - it's a stretch to call it that - is not really about discussing things not included in the topic header. I love hearing about other gardeners' experiences growing just about anything edible. It's even been hard for me to refrain from talking about my fruit trees - it all seems related. But there may be some poor soul looking for information about controlling squash vine borers, and they'd never think to look for it here...


Deep South Coastal, TX(Zone 10a)

New tomatoes for me: Black Prince, Tiffen Minnonite, Coir de Bue and trying one more time Silvery Fir Tree, Copia, Black Krim (these are yummy, I've already picked a few) plus others
Peppers: King Arthur, Muscato, Quadrato d'asti Russo, Red Ruffled and Chichimeca.

Squash/pumpkin blossoms are delicious. I need to find some giant pumpkin seeds to grow for blossoms!

Gainesville, FL(Zone 8b)

To help "reboot" the thread...

I have five more pepper varieties up since yesterday. That makes a total of 18 out of 24 that were planted on 1/27. I believe the bottom heat is making a difference, even though my seed-starting area isn't what you'd consider cold. At least some of these are species I've always considered difficult to start in the past. In fact, 8 days after planting the seeds I now have representatives of all five of the species I planted: Frutescens, Pubescens, Annuum, Baccatum, and Chinense. All but one of the seeds came from Semillas La Palma.

The next batch, started 2/1, should produce more data, as they are from a larger number of suppliers (but almost all are Annuums). If they follow the pattern of the first set, some should be up tomorrow or Tuesday (days 5 and 6).


Phoenix, AZ(Zone 9b)

Hadn't thought of that point Rich.....squash vine borer control info is buried without a proper heading.

Most of my peppers have sprouted but they have a long way to go before I can plant them out. They got a late start due to timing (as in enough hours in the day) and space requirements (as in not sufficient indoor grow lighting). Hopefully they will take off now that they have been potted up from the foam cells to potting mix.

The tomatoes are going well. Nearly all are potted up to 1 quart size, I've had trouble getting enough containers. The hydro store had some cool grow bags for 12 cents each and I bought what they had but the only size available was 1/2 gallon which take too much soil. I found some cardboard 'popcorn' cups that are 32 oz but they are not wax coated and I'm not sure how long the cardboard will hold up.


Smart and Final had some 32 oz clear Solo-type cups but I'm not sure the roots will like the clear plastic. What do you folks think? Can I use clear plastic cups for the final pot-up before going in the ground? One quart is the size when I'm finally ready to sell the plants and these cups are the most affordable solution.

San Tan Valley, AZ(Zone 9b)

A few years ago I re-potted tomato starts in some 32 oz clear plastic cups and promptly developed an alge problem. I would go with something else if it's available.

Shawnee Mission, KS(Zone 6a)

The thread went south is because I trucated the title somehow and thought it said What Are You Starting.

Phoenix, AZ(Zone 9b)

No no Susan, that wasn't it. It was the squash vine borers where we took the turn. It's all good though.

Dan, thanks for the feedback. Right after I posted that question I went and bumped around on a thread by flyboy in Florida and he has pics of his tomato starts in clear cups. Then Honeybee_NC says she always starts in these cups.....


I may give them a try for the peppers I'll be potting up next.

This message was edited Feb 6, 2012 8:17 AM

Charlotte, NC(Zone 7b)

Mary -

Honeybee_NC says she always starts in these cups

Your link takes you to flyboy's photo. I sometimes use those in the photo to pot-up seedlings, but I start all my seeds in 3oz plastic Solo cups. They used to be called (or maybe still are called) bathroom cups. Walmart sells them.

The cups in the photo are 7oz cups (I think.)

Phoenix, AZ(Zone 9b)

I was referring to the fact that you say you've used clear cups, not so much their size. I always thought plants did not want to grow roots in a clear container.....maybe that was misinformation. It's been in my head for years so there's no telling where I got the idea.

Richland, WA(Zone 7b)

Mary, I use clear cups nearly all the time, and have great success with them. You can watch the root development which is fun-if you feel that the roots shouldn't see light, just wrap a paper around the pots or the whole flat and peek at them when you want to. I have some fig cuttings rooting in 20oz clear cups that Horseshoe sent me- Thet are very happy-I just don't know where I will find the spece to plant them- probably in containers since they would probably freeze back every winter here.
I hope we don't get too caught up with this wandering off topic subject- I don't think it is a problem at all. I enjoy the exchange, and I don't think anyone should be jumped on for chatting-we all can learn a little every day, otherwise it ain't worth gettin up !

Phoenix, AZ(Zone 9b)

I hope we don't get too caught up with this wandering off topic subject- I don't think it is a problem at all.

I agree. It's all good. Rich did make a good point that the information we collect off-topic is not searchable when someone might benefit from the discussion. Can't have it all. ;-))

Good to know I can grow in the clear containers. Dan may have had some other issue that coincided with the plants in clear plastic.

How do you put drainage holes in the bottom? Best part of the cardboard popcorn cups is how easy it was to punch holes in 5 cups at a time.

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