But now I'm happy to be back. For today's Harvest Monday, I don't have too much in the way of harvest, but I do have a wee bit of excitement to share.
Do you see what I see? New pepper blossoms, in mid-December! My cayenne pepper plant that I brought indoors about two and a half months ago has been not only surviving, but actually thriving, flowering and starting to make little baby peppers again. I'm really surprised that the plant is producing new flowers even though we left most of the ripe red peppers on the plant for "looks." I remember reading somewhere that picking ripe peppers will keep the plant from slowing or ceasing new flower/fruit production, but apparently the reverse is not necessarily true?
This is the top-ish view of the pepper plant. It's a bit hard to see in this picture, but there are dozens of new blossoms on this plant. Outside the window, you can see some dusting of snow from early last week (all these pictures were taken last week). We've gotten a lot more snow this week to a point where I can barely see the raised boxes (10 inches high) outside under the snow.
Compared to less than two months ago, this pepper plant has grown a lot more foliage to support new blossoms. If you think that we crank up the heat in the house to greenhouse conditions - we don't. We keep the thermostat set at between 66 F (night) and 68 F (day). When I first brought this pepper plant in to winter indoors, I had hoped that it would hunker down and survive the indoor conditions without dying so that it could start to grow again next spring. But this plant is still actively growing and definitely exceeding my best expectations.
Okay, one last picture before I sign off. Oh, and in spirit of Harvest Monday, I did harvest four cayenne peppers from our growbox pepper plant (unfortnately no pictures) yesterday to use in our slow-cooker beef stew. Whoa, we had some spicy stew!
Happy winter gardening!