I harvested the Chile de Árbol early in November. They are drying nicely in my Rock Room. Recycling cardboard flat boxes for drying racks is a worthwhile pursuit. The tall “trees” I cut back to 8″ in the hoop house. I covered the plants with several layers of row cover to overwinter.
These giant tree chilies grew 7 feet tall and produced a good crop of 3″ to 4″ Bird’s Beak or Rat’s Tail chilies.
These peppers are not as moist as some varieties. Therefore, they dry exceptionally well.
The next step is to store in a dry place for further use plus I want to try my hand at making ristras.
Stay tuned! Have a spicy day!
The Chile de árbol grows into a small tree. In a greenhouse the pepper trees grow more than 10 feet. The Tree Chili is originally from Mexico and is a staple for cooking and seasoning. They are presently growing in my hoop house reaching 6 feet!
The plants have started to flower as the temperature is a little cooler. I am starting to see fruit set. This variety is a Capsicum anuum type of pepper. The degree of heat is 50,000 to 65,000 *Scoville Units. They may be substituted for Cayenne peppers, with similar flavor and heat.
When dried the peppers (also called bird’s beak or rat tail chili) hold their beautiful red color which makes them ideal for wreaths.
I will publish again when the trees are full of chilies.
*Scoville Units – The idea was to dilute an alcohol-based extract made with the given pepper until it no longer tasted hot to a group of taste testers. The degree of dilution translates to the SHU. In other words, according to the Scoville scale, you would need as many as 5,000 cups of water to dilute 1 cup of tobacco sauce enough to no longer taste the heat. Smithsonian Magazine