Lessons Learned from the 2023 Pepper Season

January 4, 2024 | Article Topics:

This has been a very quiet website the last several months. The pepper season – and life, in general – did not go as planned. And sometimes, we’ve just got to step away from things for a bit to refocus. But, we’re back and rejuvenated for the 2024 season!

superhot peppers

Before we get into the planned varieties for this upcoming season (that post is coming in the next few days), let’s take a moment to reflect on 2023 for a moment and see what we may or may not have learned.

There’s No Planning for Mother Nature

I’ve said this before and I will say it again. Mother Nature is the largest unknown factor when setting off into the wild pepper yonder. Just when we think we are prepared for her, she throws a massive curve ball that catches us off guard. For instance, in my area we had a much colder May/June than we typically do. This chillier weather kept the plants smaller than expected for way too long. As a result, many of my plants failed to produce anything more than a handful of ripened fruit – in November.

A secondary result of the poor weather, was an internal malaise toward the season. I just was not as enthusiastic about my plants as I have been in the past. The lack of growth and production throughout the season was a drain on me mentally that I had not experienced in the past. This would also explain the lack of posts on this website.

Rolling the Variety Dice

Every season, I grow a decent number of varieties. I have my staples that I grow each year, but the majority of the plants that I start are new to me. With that comes an unknown outcome as to whether or not I will ultimately like the end result. Sure, the plants look good and the ripe fruit are beautiful, but the flavors may not match what I personally enjoy flavor-wise.

That’s just the chance we take as growers. Unfortunately, for me, this past season seemed to produce a larger than normal number of plants that I just did not enjoy. That happens. It was just bad timing with the whole Mother Nature thing to create a perfect storm of disappointment.

Time to Prepare for 2024

Despite my feelings for last year, it’s time to regroup and prepare to start sowing seeds next month. I’ve got a preliminary list of plants that I am going to start. There are the usual suspects and, of course, a pile of new ones as well. I feel reinvigorated and ready to get rolling, so here’s to the New Year and a great start to the 2024 pepper season. Happy growing!