Are Chilli Annual or Perennial Plants?

date:2019-07-18 views:350

Most chilli is grown as an annual: It is started in early spring (often indoors), then transplanted outside when temperatures are warmer.


From summer to autumn, the chilli peppers are harvested; the plants are removed before, or die down in, freezing temperatures.


This is so normal a course of chilli growth, Carl von Linné (the botanist who invented the system of naming animal and plant species that we still use) thought it was an annual plant.


For that reason, he named the most important of the domesticated speciesCapsicum annuum.


Really, chilli is a perennial plant. It is often short-lived, growing for only a few years, but it is not an annual. Wild chilli like the chiltepin can grow for decades; cultivated varieties could grow for years, too, but are bred to produce well during their first year.


Most importantly, the Capsicum species are plants of the tropics and subtropics; they cannot survive a frosty winter. (The chiltepin does survive some frost, but only when it does not freeze its stem at the ground, from which it can then sprout new growth.)

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