On the cover of their “tribute” EP to The Beatles, that 80s Californian band, The Red Hot Chili Peppers revisited the famous Zebra Crossing and did adventurous things with their socks. I was never quite sure about why they chose their name until I started to grow my own red hot chili peppers here in my little garden in Lewes, England.
A long way from California, I wasn’t sure how successful I would be growing these exotic-looking plants here in temperate southern England especially as we have had a cold Spring, a disappointing Summer and, now that Autumn has arrived, an early frost. This might not sound very rock ‘n roll but the american band reminded me to get my plants under cover before the weather changed and I could now appreciate why that fun-loving Californian band were so careful with their peppers when crossing the road and the Atlantic.
Having re-listened to their music from their more adventurous, younger days, I will never quite see my own peppers in quite the same way.
They are now turning my kitchen into a chili jungle with four varieties: Hungarian Hot Wax (ok, enough innuendo for one weekend), Jalapeno, Friggitello and Pimento. They are late I think but I am not giving up on them now that they are getting some warmth under my kitchen skylight.
Whilst waiting for them to ripen, maybe we should listen to The Red Hot Chili Peppers in the days when they were still silly but not so silly that we couldn’t appreciate their musicality and energy. Oh, and by the way, don’t forget to wash your hands after handling chili peppers before getting up to any of the tricks that these guys became famous for….chilis can be very hot.