The Great Dorset Chilli Festival have announced the start of their chilli plant growing competition with entries to be judged at this years' Festival on 2nd and 3rd August. Chillies can take a while to germinate and ought to be grown now to maximise the chances of plants being laden with ripe fruit come judging day.
"After the popularity of last year's competition I think many people will want to have a go", says chilli festival organiser Miles Halton, adding "just remember to feed your plant, it makes so much difference to the appearance".
As last year, Class 1 in this years' competition starts with a level playing field – everyone has to grow the same variety of chilli, the NuMex Twilight. This chilli variety is a very ornamental plant with great tasting fruit. The organisers can even supply the seeds (while stocks last), free of charge and with a basic growing guide.
Class 2 is open to any variety of chilli plant, but it must have been grown this year.
Chilli seeds need warmth to germinate and can take weeks to appear, so sowing before the end of February is advised.
Judging is by co-sponsors of the competition Amateur Gardening Magazine, Sea Spring Seeds in West Bexington and Simpsons Seeds near Longleat, with chances to win trophies and £50 in garden centre vouchers.
For full rules and to receive NuMex Twilight chilli seeds (while stocks last) contact: firstname.lastname@example.org, or call 01258 447040.