Size does matter: an experiment with pots

6 months ago as one of my first experiments I planted 3 chilli seedlings. As I inspected them week to week my mouth watered with all the delicious dishes that would benefit from that extra kick of spice. None more so than one of my all time favourites – Singapore chilli crab!

Initially I had the seedlings in a half barrel – rustic chic and appealing to the eye but there wasn’t quite enough space once the neighbouring carrots and basil started taking off.

Carrot, spicy basil and chilli seedlings (top to bottom)

I had 3 pots on hand, and 3 chilli plants. Magnifique!

Each pot varied considerably in size, but as the chilli seedlings were still tiny I didn’t think too much of it.

Fastforward to today. Amazingly (perhaps stating the obvious for the seasoned gardener), each chilli tree has grown to reflect the size of the pot it was planted in!

Size does matter!

The big mamma

Had I kept the 3 chilli seedlings cramped up against the carrots, I wonder whether they would have grown at all. I certainly would have been left disheartened and thinking chillis are tough to grow.

The size of the pot has also affected the produce. Plentiful, medium-sized chillis from the largest, while the smallest only produces stubs of chillis that dry out before they turn red.

Small shrivelled chilli stubs

Spicy luscious delights from the big mamma

Fortunately my big mamma chilli tree has bountiful chillis with a zing for all my needs. In fact I can’t make enough chilli crabs to keep up!

PS. Be warned, the saying that home grown chillis are the spiciest is true!


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