I have been de-hybridizing a jalapeno pepper for about 4 years now. Every year I have saved the seeds and replanted. The first year I was very careful when handling the seeds. I wore gloves and carefully placed the seeds in plastic envelopes. I did however test the seeds for heat the first year and to my surprise, they were not hot at all. In fact, for some reason unknown to me, I could put a handful of the seeds in my mouth and chew on them without burning.
So, for the past 3 years I have been saving the seeds without any skin protection. And every year the seeds were almost heatless.
Until this year
When collecting the seeds this year, I followed the same procedure as before. No gloves, just cut the pepper open and scraped the seeds out.
I laid them on a paper plate to dry for a few days and sat down at the computer to check my email.
You can imagine what happened next. My eyes started burning, and my lips actually became numb. I thought I was going into shock.
Then I remembered. I just cut open the jalapenos.
I quickly went out to the kitchen where my seeds had been cut and picked up a piece of the flesh and ate it.
Wholly Moley, that sucker was scorching.
I swiftly ran into the bathroom and scrubbed down. It was however a little too late at this point. The damage had been done.
The moral of the story
Never assume that your hybrid plants are going to produce consistent results year after year. One year no heat.. then HEAT.
Of course it’s my fault for being careless.
So until this plant stabilizes, I’m not going to take it for granted.
Even if it may be another 5 years or so.
As one reader said to me GLOVE UP!