With so many chilli pepper varieties out there, it can be really hard to decide which ones to grow. Chilli colours can be anything from purple, to bright orange, to brown and even blue. Heat levels may range from the sweetest bell pepper to the burn-your-insides Trinidad Scorpions. You can even select chillies by plant measurement if you have limited space to grow them. How you pick peppers for your garden is determined by what your preferences are. Below is just a sampling of popular choices listed by color, heat level and plant size.
Here you’ll find chilli peppers listed by a selection of amazing colors. We don’t include green and red because most chiles start off green and end up red. This list doesn’t include all possible pepper varieties that fall into these color categories, but it will give you a good idea of what is available.
Brown: Chocolate Habanero (Congo Black), Bhut Jolokia Chocolate, Trinidad Douglah, Trinidad Congo Brown, Trinidad 7 Pod Brown, Aji Panca (Aji Brown), Black Naga, Chocolate Scotch Bonnet, Miniature Chocolate, Aji Brown, Chilhuacle Negro, Pasilla
Black: Black Hungarian, Royal Black, Black Jalapeno, Black Pearl, Black Scorpion Tongue, Little Nubian
Purple: Purple Jalapeño, Purple Bhut Jolokia, Pimenta da Neyde, Purple Beauty Bell Pepper, Explosive Ember, Fluorescent Purple, Large Purple Cayenne, Firecracker Pequin
Yellow: Yellow 7 Pot, Lemon Drop, Aji Pineapple, Trinidad Perfume, Fatalii, Yellow Rocoto (Manzano), Scotch Bonnet Yellow, Trinidad Moruga Scorpion Yellow, Bhut Jolokia Yellow, Trinidad Congo Yellow, Trinidad Morovas, Trinidad Scorpion Yellow, Yellow Devil’s Tongue, Big Sun (Yellow Sun) Habanero, Golden Cayenne, Peter Pepper Yellow
White: Yucatan White Habanero, Peruvian White Lightening, White Bhut Jolokia, Giant White Habanero
Blue: Filius Blue
Multicolored: NuMex Twilight, Jalapeno Piñata, Aji Omnicolor, Hot Fish, Chinese Five Color, Marbles, Hot Fish
You can pick your peppers by heat level to create the spice you need in your kitchen. Below is just a sampling of chile peppers that fall into each heat level category.
Mild: Pasilla, Poblano, Anaheim, Trinidad Perfume, Banana Pepper, Cubanelle, Pepperoncini, Hatch Chile Peppers, Guajillo, Aji Brown, Aji Panca, Ancho, Bishop’s Hat, Cherry, Chilhuacle varieties, Chupetinha (Pimenta Bico), Georgia Flame, Jalapeno Fooled You, Medusa, Peri Peri
Hot: African Devil, Habanero, Serrano, Aji Lemon Drop, Fresno, Puya, Santaka, Charleston Hot, Jamaican Hot, Scotch Bonnet, Fatalii, Caribbean Red, Beni Highlands, Bonda Ma Jacques, Brown Rocoto, Bulgarian Apple, Chicken Heart, Ecuadorian Hot, Goats Weed, Hinkle Hatz
Super Hot: Trinidad Scorpion, Trinidad Scorpion Butch T, Trinidad Scorpion Moruga, Carolina Reaper (HP22B), Bhut Jolokia / Naga Jolokia / Ghost Pepper, Naga Morich (Dorset Naga), 7 pot (7 pod) pepper, Trinidad Douglah (7 Pod Brown), 7 Pod Jonah, 7 Pod Barrackpore, 7 Pod Brain Strain, 7 Pod Primo, Trinidad Scorpion Moruga Blend, Bhut Jolokia Indian Carbon, Trinidad Morovas, Trinidad Congo
Depending on the chilli variety, many pepper plants typically grow between 2 to 4 feet tall. When plants are 2 feet or smaller, we list this as “compact,” and when plants are 4 feet and higher, we label it as “tall.” Ornamental varieties are a good example of compact-size plants. If you grow tall varieties, you’ll need plant supports, such as a plant stakes or tomato cages, to properly hold up the larger size pepper plants. The varieties below are just a sampling of compact and tall pepper plants that you can grow.
Compact: Black Pearl, Filius Blue, NuMex Twilight, White Habanero, Marbles, Royal Black, Aji Omnicolor, Chinese Giant, Firecracker Pequin, Little Nubian, Medusa’s Head, Miniature Chocolate, Abbraccio
Tall: Brazilian Starfish, Habanero Tree (Habanero de Arbol), Giant Marconi Red, Bishop’s Crown (Christmas Bell), Rain Forest, Aji Amarillo