Trinidad Scorpion Conundrum

July 22, 2016 | Article Topics: ,

To start this season of pepper growing, the wife and I hit up a local nursery and purchased what you’ve seen on Twitter and this site. One of the plants we purchased just after Mother’s Day of this year was what was labeled as a Trinidad Scorpion. I thought nothing of it and dutifully fed, watered and loved it over the next month.

Right at the start of July, I had to chop my Scotch Bonnet back a good deal due to aphid infestation — the neem oil and dish soap was applied too late. Since that’s my wife’s favorite chili, the decision was quickly made to make another run to the same market and get her another one. When we arrived, we found one that looked healthy and was already producing pods. Bonus! A short distance down the growing table from it was a Trinidad Scorpion that was also production pods. Double Bonus!

Upon arriving home, I noticed that the pods that were growing on my previously purchased plant didn’t really resemble the pods of this new plant, as you can see in the photos below.. The leaf color and structure look the same to my untrained eye. All the pods are the same pale, light green, but their shapes are dramatically different.

Trinidad Scorpion
Trinidad Scorpion

So this begs the question, is their an interloper, a pepper prankster if you will, masquerading as a different plant? Or even more probably, has one or the other (or both) been affected by cross-pollination with another plant? In only my second year of growing peppers, I don’t believe I’m experienced enough to make a call on either question. I suppose, I could always wait until they ripen and do a taste test.

Any help from the pepper community is greatly appreciated.