Thai Volcano Pepper plants grow 30-45 cm (12-18”) high on short sturdy bushes with a 30-40 cm (12-16”) wide spread. Leaves are elongated and dark green. After flowering, the plant gives rise to clusters of upright green peppers that turn bright red at maturity. The peppers average around 5-7.6 cm (2-3"), long and 2 cm (¾"), wide at the shoulders. They are a striking plant when the peppers are a brilliant red. Peppers are used in Asian cooking or used in any cooking where fiery hot spice is desired. These do excellent in pots. After several years of growing and experimenting with these peppers in our gardens, we have determined that they grow best planted close together 30 cm (12”) apart in blocks of 20-30 plants.
Start indoors 6-10 weeks before your last spring frost. Sow 4-5 seeds 6 mm (¼”) deep in 10 cm (4”) pots and cover lightly with soil medium and keep soil moist but not too wet. We keep under lights at a temperature of 26.7-29˚C (80-85˚F). Germination rates can vary drastically from 10 days to 21 days. Thin seedlings to 2-3 per pot. Once seedlings develop their second set of true leaves, prune the first set of true leaves. Pruning the leaves forces secondary growth and creates a bushier plant. We do this on several leaf sets. If seedlings become too leggy, place them in a cooler location. This will slow them down and make their stems thicker. Transplant seedlings when soil has warmed up to 15.6-18˚C (60-65˚F). Plant transplants 30 cm (12”) apart each way in rows or blocks.
Note: Peat pots are not recommended for germinating peppers. The pH may be too high and peat pots retain a lot of water that may drown the seeds.
Soil Conditions: Well worked rich, loose and well-drained soil. Ideal pH: 5.5-6.8
Planting Depth: Sow seeds 6 mm (¼) deep.
Germination: 7-21 days.
Height at Maturity: Plants reach 30-45 cm (12-18”) tall. Compact bush habit. Spread can be 30-40 cm (12-16”) wide.
Days to Maturity: 85-90 days.
Watering: Peppers require about 2.5 cm (1”) of water per week. Allow water to completely soak the soil 15-20 cm (6-8”) deep. This will ensure good growth, whether vegetables are grown in single hills or wide rows. The amount of rain that falls during the week will help supplement how much you should water your garden. Soil should remain moist.
Sun/Shade: Full Sun
Spacing after Thinning: Plant transplants 30 cm (12”) apart each way in blocks or rows.
Additional Information Thai Volcano Peppers are rated at 2500-5000 SHU (Scoville Heat Units). Harvesting “Hot Peppers” is task that is best completed wearing latex or rubber gloves to prevent any accidents. Hot peppers contain organic chemicals called capsaicinoids which can burn sensitive skin, your eyes, your mouth, and other sensitive areas. Use a good pair of scissors to cut the peppers from the bush. Picking them off usually will result in breaking off branches. To prolong a pepper harvest, cut peppers from the plant regularly.