Bishops Crown Chili
Fruits of the Bishops Crown Chili have an atypical shape, which reminds of a bishop’s cap or bell. This is why the chili plant is also aptly described as bell chili. The chili peppers usually have three sides, each of which runs out to a round tip. This is how this special bell-shaped chilli pepper is made.
The Bishops Crown Chillies have a distinct paprika taste and are suitable for tens of dishes. They are thin to medium fleshy and have a diameter of 3 to 4 cm (~1,5 inch).
Compared to other chillies, the plant quickly reaches an impressive height. It does not have the widespread bushy growth form, but grows like a tree in the height. Finally, the Capsicum baccatum plant is about two meters high and often has a trunk of 1.5 meters in length. At the top, Bishops Crown branches out into an expansive crown.
Today this chili is cultivated by hobby breeders and farmers all over the world. Its origin lies in Barbados, where the chili grows in culture as well as in the wild. Bishops Crown belong to the same species of Aji varieties.
People who see a Bishop’s Crown Chili for the first time will be amazed. After trying their crispy flesh, astonishment turns into admiration.
Chili plants of the genus Capsicum baccatum often grow to more than two meters in size. The origin of the name Baccatum lies in the berry-like fruits of the nightshade plant. Responsible for the name is the famous botanist Carl von Linné, who introduced a systematic name for plants. The species can easily be distinguished from other chilli varieties by its flower. It is characterized by a white-greenish flower.
Already the South American advanced cultures appreciated this variety. In Peru and Bolivia there are indications from excavations that C. baccatum varieties were already cultivated around 2,500 BC1. This was already 4,500 years ago and lies in the area of the Incas and Aztecs.
Mature Bell chili reach between 5,000 and 30,000 Scoville. Their pods, in the shape of a Catholic bishop’s cap, are rather mild than medium-hot. How much the pods burn depends on the plant, the location and the growing conditions. Compared to Jalapeños, Bishops Crown Chillies usually burn much less in the mouth. But be careful: this can vary from fruit to fruit. In our opinion, the degree of sharpness is 3 - 5.
In addition to the pleasant spiciness, the sweet and fruity taste is convincing. A sour paprika aroma makes Bishops Crown Chili perfect for seasoning vegetables and salads.
The Bishops Crown Peppers taste best fresh. Their memorable paprika aroma also makes them interesting for salsas, salads, as chilli powder and for preserving.
A salsa is made fast and easy. It is ideal to be eaten during a football match with chips. The preparation is quick and is thanks to the bell peppers .
Cut an onion and garlic clove into small pieces. With a can of tomatoes in a blender give. Add the chillies and mix briefly once. Season with salt, fresh coriander, lime juice and cumin. Pulse the mixer a few times and the salsa is ready.
The intense paprika taste becomes more intense as it dries. This makes Bishops Crown one of the best medium hot chillies. Dry the chillies in the oven. It’s easier in the dehydrator. If you harvest many chillies it is worthwhile to buy a device to dry the chillies. After the chillies have dried, they are powdered in a mortar or a coffee grinder.
The cultivation of bishop’s caps Chilis is worthwhile itself. The plant is not only striking because of its chili shape, but also because of its impressive way of growing. This perennial tulip chili easily reaches a height of 1.5 - 1.8 meters in the first year. It loves warm weather with a high humidity. In its homeland, the island of Barbados, the average temperature is 26°C (78.8 °F).
In Bishops Crown Chilis, make sure that the plant tub is large enough. A chili plant that grows two meters high also needs space below. A 20 - 30 litre tub filled with loose tomato soil has done a good service in our chili breeding. The harvest from August onwards was very abundant and the fruits could be used in many different ways.
Germinating chilli seeds is an exciting moment every year. The time of the cultivation is the most beautiful part of the chili breeding. Waiting and trembling, finally a first fresh green, which appears after one to two weeks. This makes the dreary days in winter forgotten. Ideally you should start breeding Bishops Crown Chilis at the end of December or beginning of January.
The selection of chlish peppers at discounters is quite small. That’s why it’s worth the effort to grow chillies yourself. While you hardly get any fresh bell peppers from which you can get fresh seeds, almost every chilishop with seeds sells this first-class variety.
Fortunately, Capsicum baccatum germinate relatively easily. At least if you know a few basic rules. The chili seeds of bell peppers germinate at 25°C to 28°C (77 - 82 °F) within 10 to 20 days. Soak them in water, chamomile tea or lemon water to shorten the germination time considerably.
Afterwards it goes into a small, heatable greenhouse. There the chili seeds are planted about half a centimeter in coconut swell tablets neon tubes which serve as plant light are switched on with a timer 10 hours a day. The germination rate of the Bishops Crown Chilisamen has been almost consistently 100% with us. They seem to be quite easy to grow.
For the relatively large chili plant, a sufficiently large pot is important. Under 25 cm is stupid. Think bigger: 35 cm or even half a meter is just right for the chic chili variety. The larger the root space, the more luxuriant the growth. In the flower pot you still have the advantage to bring the plant into your home in autumn. Like all other Chilis, the Bishops Crown Plant is not winter-hardy.
You should plan a lot of space because of its sweeping crown. At least half a meter, better still a whole meter distance to the next plant. When choosing the location, pay attention to sun and warmth. Laternchili feel quite at home along a sunny house wall. Such a place has also further advantages: The leaves of this chili variety are huge. This makes you susceptible to wind and can easily break off. Pay attention if possible to a windbreak nearby.
A loose and humus soil is mandatory for the soil. The easiest to obtain is tomato soil. Practical for us, we need the substrate early in the year. Usually you can still get a good deal in DIY stores before the season.
One topic has to be mentioned again and again in chili breeding. But you only have to remember three words: waterlogging, cold, dead. Please read a more detailed article about watering chili plants here.
In the garden a prefertilised soil with manure is ideal. For the Bishops Crown, we like to use long-term fertilizer on the balcony and as a houseplant. This ensures that powerful chili plants are well supplied during their entire growth phase. The portions can easily reach their limits. After all, the plant reaches an impressive size and the yield is remarkable.
One day, usually on a warm summer day in early autumn, the time has come. The endlessly long believed chillies change from green to red. Usually this happens half a year after sowing. A ripe orange-red is then classic, rarely deep red.
To harvest gently from the chili plant, cut the chillies off at the style. It is best to make the cut exactly in the first third of the stalk of the chilli towards the plant.
As a rule, the harvest for bell peppers is quite high. We estimate that in the full drainer in which we picked the chillies there were about 80 to 100 chillies.
Do you know what to do with them right after the harvest? Heads, hollow out and fill with cream cheese. Bring food to the right temperature immediately or in the oven or grill. Both refreshingly delicious.
Capsicum baccatum can live up to six years. Of course only if you spend the winter in a warm and bright place. If the plant gets frost once, it is done forever. Permanent temperatures below 15 °C won’t do it any good either. It then stops growing. You can find a detailed article on hibernation here. There are two things you still have to do: Before you bring them in, you have to do a pest control cure. Support your plants in winter with plant light.
|Variety name||Bishops Crown Chili|
|Plant size||150 - 180 cm|
|Maturing period||90 days|
|Scoville||5,000 - 30,000 SHU|
|Germination period||10 - 20 days|
|Germination temperature||25 - 28 °C / 77 - 82 °F|
|Planting||distance min. 90 cm|