CE 2011 approach

chilemilioFebruary 20, 2011

i decided to take a different approach to the chile efforts this year that i thought was worth sharing on the threads. with limited space in the apartment, i found some reasonably priced hardware on amazon to build a basic indoor greenhouse. no active ventilation, I just left one side open, its not more than 18" deep. I used a frame with a height adjustable grow light as the base for the structure. Enough to fit four 3/4 gal pots and the 'hot house' for the seeds, sitting over a heat mat. All is wrapped with some heat reflective material. See pictures below.

Frame Structure

Newly Cleared Desk

Chiles 2011

Today is day 0. I'll update this thread to report my results, etc. Good luck to everyone this year.


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Nice setup!

Yer plants hang out right next to ya when reading and making posts on GW. I like it!


    Bookmark   February 21, 2011 at 9:47AM
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It is with a sad heart that my update on my approach this year has required a restart. I've had moderate success growing chiles in previous years without any growing hardware. But this year, I added a heat mat, lamp and heat reflective enclosed chamber.

I tried to do too much as evidenced by the small plants in the chamber with the seedlings (above).. which brought aphids into the chamber. And then I didn't sanitize the dirt from the Home Depot, which brought about a gnat infestation into all plants in the apartment. Lastly, it was my first attempt at 72 cell seedling hothouse/tray, which resulted in torn roots when transplanting to individual cups.

The seedlings pictured first below have acclimated to the cold outside, they will be transplanted around the apartment building, and perhaps some strategically chosen irrigated medians around town.

Finally, the apartment has been cleared of pests, and i'm restarting from scratch. Unfortunately the limited supply of seeds from peppermania's garden of fire was used up in attempt #1, but the generosity of a reader of these forums hooked up a seroius collection of superhots! Thanks Rick! Half of the seeding tray cells are lined with parchement paper to facilitate seedling removal. The other half have peat pods partially in the cells. Lastly, I added a temp regulator to maintain the hothouse around 80F.

Here is the list of varieties in queue:
Chocolate Bhut, Yellow Bhut, Bhut Jolokia - CP, Naga Morich - PM, Naga Morich - CP
Trinidad Scorpion -CP, Trinidad Scorpion -RS, Trinidad 7 Pot, Marouga Long, Jamaican Choco
Aji Cristal, Purple Pequin, Red Rocotto, Lemon drop, Scarlet Lantern
Saporo Hot, Jona Mod, thai,
Brazilian Starfish, Nepalese Hot, Peperone di Senise, Kerala #3

I hope to update with positive results. Good luck to everyone


Seedlings and kitchen window chiles outside

Tried using a flea trap to catch all the gnats. It worked for these poor buggers, but the infestation was too much.


    Bookmark   April 18, 2011 at 3:09AM
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Very interesting. I like it.

    Bookmark   April 18, 2011 at 9:34AM
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greenman28 NorCal 7b/8a

Sorry about the infestation, man.
I deal with aphids all winter....but never the fungus gnats.
The less peat you use, the fewer gnats you'll encounter.
Good luck,


    Bookmark   April 18, 2011 at 1:20PM
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Been a while, but i thought i'd update the Chilemilios 2001 approach. Basically, i'm 2 months behind the season, but all the chiles seem happy.

The 2nd sprouting attempts with 1/2 peat pods, and half potting soil was half succesful. i think the problem with the first sprouting attempt was that it was too moist along with pests. The peat pods on #2, not making contact with the water, had the most successful sprouts.

The chile chamber itself has worked well, but i'm thinking it could use another hanging bulb, so that they don't have to be crowded around the middle of the chamber. started with 12, down to 4 due to space required.

The rest of the chiles were split with the strongest 7 in the box window in the kitchen. Last year, the chiles in that window were not so strong, always drying out during the day with temps in the upper 90s. This year, i put two of those half sheets of paper towels cut half way up, around the base of the plants. Chiles are loving it, no drying out, they keep growing. I think the paper towels keep the moisture in and reflect the uv, keeping the soil cooler..

Anyways, here's the main pics showing the progress. I'll be uppotting to 4gal pots everywhere and keeping them trimmed in the next couple weeks.

Peat Pods above water most effective. (left)

Up-pot #1 into Solo Cups

Up-Pot#2 - 12 pots (Spicy Thai, trinidad scorpion, nepalese Hot, J3, purple pequin, marouga long, trinidad 7-pot, yellow bhut, bhut Jolokia)

Up-pot #2 - 4 pots (Yellow Bhut, Bhut Jolokia, Marouga, Trinidad 7-pot [with the curly leave syndrome])

Up-pot #2 - Kitchen Window w/ papertowels (top: Spicy Thai, Yellow Bhut, Trinidad Scorpion, Brazilian Starfish) (bottom: Purple Pequin, Trinidad 7-pot, purple pequin)

    Bookmark   August 20, 2011 at 10:19PM
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Its been a while since my last update.. 2011 was not as successful as I would have liked. I think mostly because of the late start, and dealing with the persistent bugs wasn't the best for sprouting chiles.

The good news is that I kept the stronger ones around, and they are doing great. The Marouga I've been babying the most is the biggest of them right now and full of flowers!

Trying the chile chamber again this year with a batch of purchased seedlings from New Jersey... The only problem with the chamber is that I don't think it has the best light, I might have to make some upgrades, or continue rotating the chiles between the kitchen window and the chile chamber.

Good luck to everyone this year

Top: Trinidad Scorpion, little spicy thai, mini chili, Marouga
Bottom: Yellow Bhut Jolokia, Bhut Jolokia, Trinidad 7 Pot

7pot douglah x2, trinindad scorpion x2, yellow 7pot, Singapore chile, trinindad 7pot, chocolate habanero

    Bookmark   May 9, 2012 at 5:46PM
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They are looking great. Watch the overwatering and you should have less chance of fungus gnats. Also, try a 1 part Hydro peroxide to 5 part water for watering your plants if you notice any fungus gnats. It killed off a bad infestation I had within a week this year. Make sure it is the 3% solution Hydro peroxide though.

I hope this year turns out better than last year for you. You have some serious heat growing there.

    Bookmark   May 9, 2012 at 6:22PM
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That is good stuff. I put in some H2O2 every so often, but didn't think about using it to get rid of those gnats.. I'll try it out this weekend

Thanks Bruce,


    Bookmark   May 15, 2012 at 11:49AM
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You are welcome. Worked great for me.

    Bookmark   May 15, 2012 at 9:57PM
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After a few years of failed attempts at growing superhots in my apartment, suffering from cold nights, annoying gnats, and a general lack of sunlight.. I can finally declare success with my first harvested bhuts and morougas!

    Bookmark   July 11, 2012 at 1:04PM
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Plants look great and you can tell you did not get Ebay'ed. Bhuts on the right and Morouga on the left.

Have you tried any of them yet?

    Bookmark   July 11, 2012 at 6:39PM
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I was concerned about the Bhuts because they grew pretty fast compared to the others, but after a taste and a burn, I'm pretty certain they are true. The Morougas are the first I've had, had a slight frutiness like a bhut, but I think the taste of the heat feels closer to a 7pot (don't know if that makes sense).. they match some of the pictures i've seen for morougas, but I guess Morouga just refers to a region in trinidad vs. a specific strain. Looking forward to getting more!

    Bookmark   July 11, 2012 at 8:18PM
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