Growing Chili Peppers

Welcome to thechileman.org, the home of the world's most comprehensive, fully illustrated chile database. Chillies, chilli, paprika, capsicums or chili peppers, it doesn't matter what you call them, we will have detailed information on 3797 varieties and at least one photograph for 2047 varieties. From the sweetest bell pepper to mouth blistering naga morich and trinidad scorpion, we provide all you need to know about the capsicum genus and its many species.

The database covers the capsicum genus, mild and hot, domesticated and wild. There are gaps in our knowledge, but with your help we are adding new varieties and photographs. If you want to get in contact, to make suggestions or to say hello, please feel free to send a hang out request on Google+

Latest News

Finally got around to adding a cluster feature to the google map on the growing lists section. The page loads much faster now and really shows where we all are! We continue to get great suggestions for new pepper varieties to add to the database, and some fantastic images of your peppers, keep them coming please. We have also been very interested to read about the controversy surrounding the Carolina Reaper and Primo peppers and will keep you updated with any new info.

Five Domesticated Species

The image below shows the heat distribution of the five main domesticated species: Ann. = Annuum. Bac. = Baccatum. Chi. = Chinense. Fru. = Futescens. Pub. = Pubescens.

pepper distribution

Obviously peppers do not fall into clear groups as their heat level, measured in SHU or Scoville Units, range from zero to perhaps a million. However, our database does categorise by heat and the nine groups we have chosen (clockwise from the top) are: Very Sweet, Sweet, Mild, Medium, Hot, Very Hot, Extremely Hot, Outrageously Hot and Nuclear. The size of the circle represents the number of varieties by species. So from the diagram you can see that the majority of capsicum varieties fall into the sweet and medium categories and are of the Annuum species. You can also say that while mild and even sweet varieties of Chinense peppers do exist, it does tend to be a species dominated by very hot peppers. Please note that although we do not currently have heat data for about almost half of the varieties in our database, we believe the general pattern will remain roughly the same. We will keep the diagram updated as we expand our knowledge.

The images below shows the distribution of pepper species in the database. There are thirty three species in total, with the five domestic species making up the majority of varieties. Some liberties have been taken with the visual representation, as many of the rarer species (such as Anomalum) only represent a single variety, where Annuum accounts for more than one thousand five hundred varieties - almost half our the entire database. We do not currently know the species for roughly a fifth of the varieties in the database.

pepper distribution

pepper distribution

Have we missed a chile variety? Have we classed a chile as originating in Botswana when in fact it is native to neighbouring Zimbabwe? The chileman welcomes feedback. Give us a shout with any comments or image contributions that help to make the database more complete. All images used are credited to the photographer. We thank you for your continued support with this project.

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