Cayenne, Carolina Hot Pepper



Southern Exposure Seed Exchange
Cayenne, Carolina Hot Pepper


3 in stock

70 days. (green > red) [1986, Clemson U. & USDA] 2-3 times more hot than regular Cayennes! Heavy yields of 1 x 5 in. fruits, larger than most Cayenne peppers. Excellent nematode resistance. 3 ft. plants.

Hot Peppers

Capsicum annuum unless noted.

How to Grow: Sow seeds 8-10 weeks before planting out after last frost. Plant seeds 1/4 in. deep in well-drained soil in shallow flats. Maintain soil temperature at least 75-85 degrees F for good germination. Peppers won’t germinate in cold potting soil–heat makes a big difference in seeds germinating in 5 days, or seeds taking up to 20 days! (Since germination can be slower if seeds don’t have enough heat, make sure to sow extra seeds in case germination is low.) Don’t overwater seeds or they may rot. Transplant to 3 in. pots as soon as several leaves have developed. Maintain day temperature 75-80 degrees F, and night temperature at least 65 degrees F. Water plants with warm water. Transplant again to larger pots if the seedlings become too large. Peppers need to have an uncrowded root system or subsequent yields will be reduced. Harden the plants by giving them plenty of light and setting them outside for a few hours on warm days. Be careful not to let the plants wilt. Don’t rush the season: a good rule of thumb is to transfer peppers to the garden after the dogwood blossoms have fallen, or when average soil temperature is 65 degrees F or above (usually a month after last frost). Space plants 18-24 in. apart in rows or blocks. Wait a month to mulch peppers so that the soil can heat up. Small-fruited varieties tolerate hot humid conditions better than large-fruited varieties. Once flowering begins, fertilizer should be withheld; otherwise, flowers may drop without setting fruit. Other factors causing flower drop are low humidity (sometimes caused by wide spacing), poor pollination, full fruit set, or night temperatures above 80 degrees F or below 65 degrees F. In the greenhouse, pollinate peppers the same way tomatoes are pollinated. Maintain high levels of phosphorus for sustained yields. Once fruit production begins, short stakes or small tomato cages may be necessary to prevent large-fruited varieties from falling over.

Harvest: Peppers are fully ripe after turning color. Although all peppers may be eaten in the green stage, ripening to red, yellow, etc. increases flavor and nearly doubles the vitamin C content.

Seed Savers: Wear gloves when collecting seeds from hot peppers. Isolate sweet varieties by 150’, and hot and sweet varieties by 300’.

Note: Days to maturity are days after transplanting. Dates are for green peppers; for ripe peppers, add a month.

Packet: 0.3 g unless stated (about 36-60 seeds, depending on variety) sows 21-60’ of transplants.