School Science Lessons
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Chilli Project

Websites: Chillies
Table of contents

1.0 Chilli Project

1.01 Chilli plant

1.02 Chilli products

1.1 Capsicum

3.4.0 Capsicum, chilli experiments

2.0 Plant seed

3.0 Plant care

4.0 Prepare land

9.14.0: Composting

9.13.0 Mulching

5.0 Study plants before transplanting

5.1 Planting

6.0 Transplanting

7.0 Plant care

8.0 Pests & diseases

9.0 Mature chilli plant


10.1 Drying and storing

11.0 Marketing

12.0 Crop report

13.0 Income

13.1 Profits

6.20.0 Records

14.0 Visits

15.0 Diet

17.0 Paprika

1.02 Chilli products
Dried chilli is sold as chilli birdseye powder, chilli flakes, chilli fruit powder, chilli fruit whole

Canthaxanthin, C40H52O2\

17.1 Capsaicin

17.0 Paprika

16.9.1 Chilli spray (pesticide)

16.0 Chilli wine

15.1 Cooking Chillies

17.2 Scoville Heat Units (SHUs)

Solasodine, C27H43NO2

1.0 Chilli project
See diagram 54.1: Chilli fruit
Capsicum species, Daley's Fruit Trees
The aim of the chilli project is to teach how to grow chillies as a cash crop.
Before you start this chilli project discuss it with the headmaster and agriculture field staff, and show them these Teaching Notes.
Do not start the project unless you can be sure that you can sell the chilli crop.
Ask the agriculture field staff to supply you with the correct seed.
Start the project so that you can commence picking chillies after 5-6 months, when the weather is dryer.
Land for the chilli garden chilli plants should be well drained, dug over and not recently used for growing chilli plants or tomatoes.
The red or sweet peppers are Capsicum annuum.
The bird chillies, bird peppers, tropical American capsicum peppers, Capsicum frutescens var. typicum or Capsicum annuum var.
glabriusculum, are said to be the ancestor of both the sweet and chilli peppers.
You will need:
1. About 4 handfuls of a large variety (e.g. "Indian" or "Long Red") and you may also wish to grow a small variety (e.g. "Tabasco").
These chillies should be newly picked with a smooth round shape and be bright red.
2. An area of land about 7 metres × 7 metres with good well drained soil, not too far away.
3. About 1 kilogram of muriate of potash (KCl) fertilizer, or IBDU
4. About 1 litre of Malathion 50 insecticide.
5. String and metric rule or tape
5. Gardening tools, spades, hoes and a rake
6. Small hand spray pump
7. New copra sacks (or plastic bags) in about 5 months time.
8. Bring some chillies to the classroom or visit a nearby chilli garden.

1.01 Chilli plant
Chilli, Capsicum annuum, cultivars, Family Solanaceae
Capsicum annuum, green pepper, chilli, Bird's eye chili, Thai chili, Guinea pepper, Cayenne pepper, paprika pepper, herbal medicine,
bell peppers, chilli pepper, capsaicine alkaloid, North America
If "capsicums" are hot, they are usually called chilli, chillies, chilli peppers, hot peppers, tabasco pepper (chilli, chile peppers in USA),
Capsicum annuum
If "capsicums" are not hot, they are usually called capsicums, bell peppers, peppers, sweet peppers, green peppers, red peppers,
pimiento, ají, Capsicum annuum
The hottest part of a chilli is the white placenta, the vein-like ribs on which the seeds are attached.
1. The chilli is an annual herb from tropical America, grown mainly for fruits used as spice.
Chillies are spice plants used to make food taste hot.
Spices are used to give a special taste to food and to improve the flavour.
Other examples of spice are turmeric, black pepper, vanilla and cardamom.
2. Chillies belong to the Solanaceae family of plants that include the Irish potato, tomato, and eggplant.
So capsicums, red peppers and chillies are related plants.
All are protective foods containing vitamins and can used as a medicine.
3. Capsicum annum are grown as perennials and include the large sweet peppers, some of which are hot.
The chili is a common annual plant cultivated for it fruits only.
Leaves have no stipules and have an almost pinnate arrangement each side of the stem.
A flower occurs in each axil.
Fruit colour and fruit shape depend on the particular variety, with the calyx persistant at the base.
Capsicums have a large fruit with a mild sweet flavour and can be eaten raw or cooked.
4. Capsicum frutescens
This name is no longer used because there is no way of separating these chillies from Capsicum annuum.
Formerly, this was the name of the smaller and hotter "bird" chillies including the varieties Indian, Long Red, Tabasco and Birds Eye.
Indian or Long Red, which look like long red fingers hanging down from the bush, have a hot taste and are used by people overseas
to make red cayenne pepper.
Tabasco, which looks like small cones or fingertips pointing up from the bush, has a very hot taste and is used to make chilli sauce for
Chinese food.
Capsicum annum var. annum, cayenne pepper, 35, 000 SHUs
Dried herb sold as fruit powder.
Capsicum chinense includes the habanero types.
Capsicum pubescens includes manzano types, which grow in dryer coastal regions.
Capsicum baccatum includes the Ajis, Peri-Peri and Escabeche types, which are semi-deciduous and grow in cooler climates.
4. Chillies are usually grown as a cash crop.
Capsicums can be planted directly but red peppers and chillies are usually sown in a seed bed and later transplanted.
Agriculture field staff can advise you on how best to grow the chillies and sell them.
5. Break open the wall of the fruit and see the seeds inside.
Do not taste the chillies or put your fingers near their eyes.
Most red peppers and chillies are too hot to eat raw or cooked.

1.1 Capsicum
Teach the students to the importance of capsicum, peppers and chillies in the diet.
Capsicum, red peppers and chillies are related plants.
Capsicum has a large fruit with a mild sweet flavour, red peppers are long and thin and have a sharp hot taste, and the most common
chilli, called Bird's Eye chilli, is a small fruit with a very hot taste used to make curry powder, pepper powder and chilli) sauce.
All these fruit are protective foods and can be a medicine.
Capsicums can be planted directly, but red peppers and chillies are usually sown in a seed bed and later transplanted.
Capsicums can be eaten raw or cooked. Most red peppers and chillies are too hot for students to eat raw or cooked.
Also there is a danger that you may get some juice in their eyes, which will sting them.
Before the lesson ask the students to bring some chillies to school.
1. Show the students the drawings of the capsicums, red peppers and chillies and look at the chillies brought to school.
Can you eat them?
2. These are good protective foods but only capsicum can be eaten raw or cooked.
3. Cut open a fruit and show the students the seeds inside.
4. Visit a chilli garden.
Ask about planting in the seed bed, where the seed comes from transplanting, picking, drying, how much do the people get for them.

2.0 Plant seed
See diagram 54.2: Chilli seed bed & nursery, chilli garden
You will need the following:
1. Five handfuls of recently dried chillies selected for good seed or packets of imported seed
2. Spades, hoes, forks and a rake, watering can
3. Tape measure or rule, and string
4. Materials for shading the seed bed, e.g. coconut palm leaves, four Y-shaped uprights, two poles about 2 metres long and many
sticks 1 metre long.
5. A crop diary to record all the information about the project, e.g. where you got the seeds, when sown, when transplanted, who did
certain jobs, dates and amounts for each picking.
This information could be copied on the notice board in a section labelled "Chilli project".
6. A small piece of land about 2 × 1 metres near the classroom that has a good topsoil in a well-drained position.

1. Select the best chillies that have a smooth rounded shape and a deep red colour.
Remove the seeds and dry them in the sun.
2. Mark out the 2 metres × 1 metre rectangle for the seed bed, then dig the soil deeply.
Make the seed bed where you can find dark topsoil that drains easily, and where chilli, tomato or eggplants have not grown before.
The dark topsoil contains rotted plant material that provides plant foods and holds water for the plant.
The loose soil allows roots to grow down easily and also holds air for the roots to breathe.
Make the top 5 cm of the seed bed as sand and soil mixed together.
Dig up the soil then rake flat to make a fine even seed bed raised above the ground.
3. Put sticks in the ground at each end, 15 cm apart.
Tie string between the sticks.
Use the handle of a rake to make a shallow furrow 1 cm deep.
Sprinkle the seeds evenly along each furrow, one cm apart, then cover with light soil.
Water along each furrow then press down lightly on top with a flat board.
4. Dig holes for the four Y-shaped uprights.
Fix the uprights in the ground.
Make a roof with sticks then put on the leaf shade.
5. Write in the crop diary: date, teacher's name and class, where seeds obtained, number of chillies used for seed, number of rows
List the names of who will water and check the chillies each day.
6. Visit the seed bed every day.

3.0 Plant care
See diagram 54.1: Germinating seeds
1. Visit the nursery each day and record when the seedlings appear.
2. Before this lesson dig up some seeds and see if they have germinated.
Note the time from planting to germinating, in your crop diary.
3. Bring some germinated seeds to the classroom.

1. Observe the germinating seeds in the chilli nursery.
2. Germination occurs when a seed grows into a young plant called a seedling.
A germinating seed needs: 1. water 2. air in the soil 3. shade.
3. Rules for looking after the young plants:
3.1 Water along rows every day.
3.2 Thin the plants so that the nearest are 10 cm apart.
Use plenty of water after thinning because the soil has become loose.
3.3 Harden the plants by taking away the shade after 6 weeks and the rest of the shade after 8 weeks.
3.4 Throw away the weak seedlings so you can transplant the best strong seedlings.
3.5 During the 6 to 8 weeks after planting the seed in the nursery, gradually take off the shade to harden the plants before transplanting.

4.0 Prepare land
1. Visit the nursery every day and write down any special observations in the crop diary.
2. Avoid selecting land where other plants of the family Solanaceae, (e.g. tomato, eggplant, other chilli plants) were growing.
3. Do your land preparation in week 2 so you will be ready when it is time to transplant about 7 weeks after sowing the seed.
4. You will need bush knives, spades, forks, hoes, rakes, string, sticks for corner pegs.
5. Cut out and burn any wild chilli bushes growing near the project, to prevent pollen from the wild plants fertilizing your plants and
producing the wrong sort of fruit.
Make sure that the job is completed and all bush plants are removed to a compost heap.

1. Land for a chilli project should have well drained soil.
The land should not have been a garden growing Irish potatoes, tomatoes, eggplant, or other chillies.
This is because these plants are in the same plant family and get similar pests and diseases.
2. The land should be cleared and hoed.
The cleared bushes and grass should be put in a heap for mulch.
3. The pH of the soil should be pH 6.5 - 7.5.
If the soil is fertilized heavily or rich manure is added the plants will grow well, produce many leaves but few fruit.
So the soil should be "moderately fertile".
4. Spacing is 75 cm apart within rows and 150 cm apart between rows.
5. Draw the positions of 32 plants in 4 rows of 8 plants.
If you allow a border of 75 cm, the area will be (75 × 7) + 75 + 75 long = 6.75 metres, and (150 × 3) + 75 + 75 cm wide =
6.0 metres.
So you will need 7 metres × 6 metres = 42 square metres.
Calculate the area of the chilli garden.

1. Go to two places, one well drained, and one badly drained where water can collect in pools when it rains.
Dig a soil profile at each place.
Feel the soil at different depths.
Which place is suitable for chillies?
2. Mark a square area 7 × 7 metres for the chilli garden.
Use hoes to mark the edge of the area.
3. Clear the ground and make a pile of the cleared bush outside the square area.
4. Dig up or hoe the whole area thoroughly.
5. Extra activity.
Leave corner pegs in ground.
Mark out 1 metre on the ground and practice a pace of 1 metre.
Then they try to pace the length of the chilli plot, 7 metres, with the eyes shut.

5.0 Study plant
Study plants before transplanting
See diagram 54.3: Chilli plant, young plant, Indian long red chilli plant bearing fruit
1. This lesson can be taught 6-8 weeks after planting the seed.
2. Dig up some young plants and wash the roots.
Bring a magnifying glass to the classroom.

Examine young plants in the classroom.
1. roots, shoot, and leaves, leaf, axils, terminal bud, tap root lateral roots, root hairs.
Use a magnifying glass to see the root hairs.
2. The young plant above the ground is a shoot.
The branch formed from an axillary bud is called a lateral shoot.
If terminal bud increases length of shoot, then plant grows taller.
If terminal bud forms a flower then fruit (or it is cut off), then axillary buds form branches and the plant becomes bushy.
3. Draw and label the young plant.

5.1 Planting
Teach the students to prepare a seed bed and soil, and to plant seed in the seed bed.
Land fro the mature chilli) plants should be well-drained, dug over, and should not have been used before growing these plants or
tomatoes lately.
The soil for the seed bed should be fine top soil.
The top five cm can be a mixture of half top soil and half sand.
The seed can be from packets or from a fruit, which has been recently dried.
The seed bed is covered with leaf shade.
Sow the seed in drills one cm deep, one cm apart within rows, 15 cm apart between rows.
Lightly cover with soil then with water.
You will need, watering tin, rake, fine soil, sand, posts, shade.
1. Show the students the land you will use for the mature chilli) plants.
Dig over the land.
2. Show the students the place for the seed bed and nursery.
3. Show the students how to prepare the fine soil in the seed bed, erect the posts and put in the shade.
4. Tie parallel pieces of string 15 cm apart to sticks at each end of the seed bed. The strings will make lines on the soil.
5. Show the students how to sprinkle seeds on the marks made by the string so that the seeds are about one cm apart.
6. Show the students how to sprinkle soil over the seeds to a depth of about one cm apart.
7. Show the students how to sprinkle soil over the seeds to a depth of about one cm, then water with a watering can.
8. Look at the seed bed every day.
When do the seedlings appear?

6.0 Transplanting
1.0 You will need the following:
1.1 32 healthy plants
1.2 Dull wet afternoon, or provide temporary shade for the transplants using coconut leaves
1.3 Spades or trowels to dig up the seedlings
1.4 Box to carry seedlings if it is a long way between nursery and chilli garden
1.5 About 350 grams of muriate of potash fertilizer
1.6 Tools to cut out the regrowth since you made the chilli garden
1.7 String and rule or tape measure
1.8 Crop diary to write the details of the transplanting.
2. Transplant when 10 weeks old.
One week before transplanting cut off the terminal bud to make the plant grow bushy.
Select only the strongest plants.
3. Before transplanting, think carefully about how you will carry the seedlings, and collect some mulch.

1. Clear the chilli garden of any regrowth.
2. Select only healthy plants, at least 10 cm high, for transplanting.
Water around roots of selected plants.
3. Mark out the chilli garden for 4 rows of 8 plants each 75 cm apart within rows and 1.5 metres apart between rows.
Chillies can be planted closer at 50 cm apart.
You can draw a map and calculate how many seedlings you will need to transplant or how much land to prepare for the available
Put a little stick where each plant will be.
4. Dig holes and fill them with water.
5. Dig up plants from nursery, with plenty of damp soil so as not to damage roots.
Try to not touch the plant with your fingers.
Plant out with same depth in soil as in nursery.
Press soil down around plant, and water.
Put mulch on soil but not near the plants because mulch may carry disease.
If the sun is very hot give each plant some temporary shade using coconut leaf.
6. Label each transplant to allow for individual care and observation.
7. Sprinkle about 1 matchbox of muriate of potash (KCl) fertilizer around each plant at least 10 cm from each stem.
These plants need more potash (K) than they can get from the soil.
A matchbox or 4 heaped teaspoons contains about 20 g of fertilizer.
8. After transplanting, visit the transplants plants every day to water and care for them.

7.0 Plant care
1. Inspect the garden at least once each week for the following tasks:
1.1 Replace any weak plants from the nursery.
1.2 Add more mulch around the plants.
It should not touch the plants.
1.3 Note any weeds and pull them all out and burn them.
1.4 Note any damage by animals, insects or any disease.
1.5 Prune the main stems of any leaves and small branches below the fruit so the stems look clean.
2. The chillies will be ready for first picking when 4 to 6 months old.

Plant chillies 75 cm apart within rows and 1. 5 metres apart between rows, but they can be planted closer at 50 cm apart.
You can draw a map and calculate how many seedlings you will need to transplant, or how much land you should prepare for the
available seedlings.
For six to eight weeks after planting gradually take off the shade to harden the plants and get them used to the sunlight.
Before transplanting think carefully about how you will carry the seedlings, and collect some mulch.
You can sprinkle about half a match box of potash fertilizer near each plant to increase the yield.
Show the students how to check the seedlings every day.
Pull out weeds then out seedlings so that you are all at least one cm apart.
Pull out any weak seedlings.
Between six and eight weeks after seeding show the students how to remove shade to harden the plants.
After eight weeks, dig the holes in the chilli garden.
Then dig up the seedlings with plenty of soil so as not to damage the roots.
Select only the strongest plants.
The best time is a dull, wet afternoon.
Put the seedlings in the hole to the same depth in the seed bed.
Put mulch around the seedling and press down on the soil.
The mulch should not touch the seedling.
Water the chillies every day.
After about five months show the students how to pick the fruit without damaging the plant.
Keep the garden weeded and keep picking every two weeks.
The small chillies can be dried in the sun or in a chilli dryer.
Visit to a chilli dryer.

8.0 Pests & diseases
If plants are suffering from serious pests or diseases they should be pulled out and burnt rather than be treated with insecticide or
Do not leave diseased plants in the garden.
Examine the chilli bushes for pests or diseases every week.
1. There are two main pests and diseases but you may discover more.
If so, tell the Department of Agriculture field staff.
2. The small scale insect Pulvinaria looks like small rounded spots on the stem.
This insect is one of the Hemiptera that feed by sucking through their long thin mouth parts.
In the scale insects the tiny males have two wings but the females have no wings and have a soft sticky body.
They suck up juices from the plant.
Sometimes a black fungus appears where they are feeding.
This can be controlled by spraying with the insecticide Malathion 50.
The rate is 8 mL or 2 teaspoons of Malathion 50 in 2 litres of water.
Aphids, scales and thrips can be controlled with a mixture of pyrethrum and white oil.
3. Collar rot is caused by a white fungus found in the soil and organic matter.
Keep the mulch at least 10 cm away from where the stem enters the ground to prevent the chilli plant getting collar rot.
The fungus, probably called Rhizoctonia or Sclerotinia, grows into the stem and later produces a brown fruiting body containing spores.
The stem of the chilli plant will turn black then rot, then the leaves wilt and the whole plant dies.
If the leaves wilt in your chillies pull out the plants and burn them.
Then treat healthy plants by soaking the soil around each stem with a soil fungicide, e.g. "Purasoil 75".
The rate is 40 mL of Purasoil in 7 litres of water.
This is enough to treat 32 plants.
4. Root knot nematode is usually a problem only in poor sandy soils so add organic matter, compost and manure, before planting.
5. Bacterial spot can be controlled with a copper-based spray but avoid overhead watering.
6. For fruit fly, set fruit fly traps to monitor the population and spray with an organic fruit fly spray.
Some people harvest chillies before they have their full red colour so they are harvested before the fruit fly can attack them.
7. Blossom end rot can be avoided by adding dolomite or garden lime to acid soils or add gypsum to alkaline soils, so pH is 6.5 -7.5
before planting, and after planting water regularly.
8. If the fruit are allowed to go rotten they will be infected by a Pepper Maggot, so keep your bushes well-picked and clean.
9. Chickens can damage chillies by pecking the fruit and scratching away the soil.

1. There are two main pests and diseases, scale insects and fungus.
2. The scale insects look like small soft round lumps on the stem.
A black fungus may also be there.
The lumps are really the wingless females, which have a soft sticky body, and long thin mouth parts.
3. The fungus causes a disease called collar rot.
It attacks the stem near the ground then the leaves wilt and the plant dies.
The fungus may come from the mulch so keep mulch away from the chilli stems.
If the leaves wilt from collar rot, pull out the bush and burn it.
Protect uninfected bushes pouring "Purasoil 75" fungicide into the soil around each stem.
Use 40 mL in 7 litres of water for 32 plants.

Looking for pests and diseases
1. It is important to look at crop plants regularly to check whether there are any pests and diseases.
Use a magnifying glass.
2. Not all insects are the enemies of the plants, they may eat some of the pests that eat the plant, e.g. a small wasp eats scale insects.
For this reason it is not always a good idea to use insecticides because you will kill the good insects with the bad.
3. Besides regular attention to the plants, make accurate observations and recording by clear drawings.

1. Go to the chilli garden with their notebooks and pencils.
2. Search each bush carefully for pests and diseases.
3. Make a collection of any pests and diseases.
Draw them carefully including the part of the plant on which they were found.
Be careful to note whether the insects really harm the plant. They may be stray or even useful insects.
4. If necessary treat the plants with insecticide or fungicide.
5. Burn any diseased plants and replace them with healthy plants.

9.0 Mature chilli plant
Study the mature chilli plant, flowers and fruit
| See diagram 54.9.1: Chilli branch with flower and fruit
| See diagram 54.9.2: Chilli flower
| See diagram 54.5: Indian Long Red chilli
1. This kind of chilli plant is called Capsicum frutescens.
It is a perennial shrub or bush that bears fruit for several years.
The branching is difficult to understand because flower stalks remain in the main stem, so that the flowers appear not to come from the
Perennial means living and bearing fruit for more than one year.
A shrub is a small bushy plant.
2. The simple leaves are almost oval in shape and pointed.
They may fall off the older parts of the stem leaving scale marks.
3. Make accurate observations on the positions of the flowers, fruit and leaves, and also the shape and colour of the leaves.
4. Study small pieces of fruiting branches in the class room.
4.1 Note the stem, leaf, flower, bud, fruit.
4.2 Draw one leaf to show shape and leaf veins.
Label mid vein in the middle, and lateral veins at the sides.
4.3 Draw and label 3 to 4 nodes of a branch to show arrangement of stem, flowers, and fruit.
5. Study of flowers and fruit
5.1 Collect flowers and fruit.
5.2 Starting from the stalk there is a wide base called receptacle.
These flowers have a green calyx of 5 sepals joined together at their base.
The calyx remains when the chilli fruit forms.
The sepals were the leaves of the flower bud, they protected the young flower parts.
5.3 The flower petals together are called the corolla.
Each petal is greenish, or yellowish white in colour.
The petals attract insects that will bring pollen from other chilli flowers to fertilize the female part of the flower.
5.4 Pollen comes from the male parts of the plant called the stamens.
One stamen is usually attached to the base of each petal.
5.5 The pollen is carried to the female part in the centre of each flower.
Where this swells out at the base is called the ovary.
It has two compartments called carpels.
5.6 Inside the carpels, attached to the centre, are ovules that form seeds, after pollen from the male part is carried to the female part.
6. The chilli flower contains one receptacle upon which are as follows:
5 sepals in the calyx, green, K5
5 petals in the corolla, white, joined at the base, C(5)
5 stamens of the male part, A5
2 carpels joined together to form the ovary in the female part., G(2)
7. Summary
The chilli fruit contains:
7.1 swollen ovary wall (green then red when seeds ripen)
7.2. many seeds in the ovary, which is made of two carpels attached to the fruit are the broken stalk, receptacle and calyx.
8. Chilli fruit are picked by breaking the stalk.
9. Flower and fruit
Table 9.0
In the flower In the fruit
Receptacle (base for other parts) Receptacle remains + broken stalk
Sepals (bud leaves) Sepals remain
Petals (attract insects) Petals die
Stamens, male parts Stamens die
Ovary, if fertilized / not fertilized
Ovary becomes the fruit / ovary dies if not fertilized
9.1. The stamen consists of the anther containing the pollen, and a little stalk called the filament.
The female part consists of the sticky stigma where the pollen lands, the style tube, which the pollen grows down, and the ovary
containing the ovules, which the pollen fertilize to become seeds.
9.2 Another way to draw a flower is a half flower diagram.
You need a sharp razor blade.
Cut the stalk down the middle, then the receptacle, then the calyx, then the ovary, until the whole flower is cut in two.
See the tiny ovules, which will become seeds inside the fruit after fertilization by the pollen.
How many ovules are there in an ovary? [many]

10.0 Harvest
1. Do not put the fingers near the mouth or eyes after handling chillies.
Picking and drying chillies can be a very boring task but it must be done properly to produce a good quality export crop.
It is very important to produce export crops of good quality because then overseas people will pay high prices for them.
2. There are different ways to motivate students to pick and dry chillies properly:
2.1. Ask the students about the importance of good quality chillies for the village people who want a cash income.
2.2. Show the correct methods very carefully and explain the reasons for the methods.
If you do this the students will know that correct methods are important.
2.3. Develop a spirit of competition between students so that each student is trying to do better than the others, both in amount picked
and good quality of the picked crop.
You could give rewards to students who do well in this, but do not use chilli picking as punishment for bad behaviour.
If student looks after and pick from "their own" chilli bush, they will have pride in their work.
3. It is best to pick on warm dry afternoons or late morning.
4. Prepare some sodium bicarbonate solution to treat chilli burns.
4.1 Each student should pick only his or her own chilli bush and keep the picked fruit separate from the others.
Warn the students about chilli burns.
4.2 Each student picks only the red smooth fruit and places the pickings in a separate basket.
Pick by breaking the stalk.
The stalk and calyx will be removed later.
5. After about 5 months show the students how to pick the fruit without damaging the plant.
6. Keep the garden weeded and keep picking every two weeks, The small chillies can be dried in the sun or in a chilli dryer.
7. When all the good fruit is picked then pick off all the damaged or badly coloured fruit and burn them.
8. Each student should measure the amount of chillies he or she picked, with stalks on.
The chillies should be left to dry in the sun then stored in a dry place overnight.
9. The teacher should arrange for. the chilli bushes to be picked properly once a week from now on.
10. Visit to a chilli dryer.

10.1 Drying and storing
1. Agriculture field staff can show you how to build a hot air drier.
It consists of a wire screen over a drum oven with a chimney.
2. You can try drying chillies in the sun on mats.
The mats should be on a raised platform or frame.
Chillies can be dried on an iron roof, but don't forget about them when it rains!
3. Prepare to bring some wet chillies that are affected by mould fungus.
This shows the students what picked chillies should NOT look like!
4. Prepare to bring some well-dried chillies, which are quite stiff and can bend.
5. Prepare to bring some over dried chillies, which can break into small pieces.

1. Each student brings in his or her partly dried chillies.
The stalks and calyx should be removed and any damaged or diseased fruits thrown away.
Show the students some chillies affected by mould
2. Picked chillies must be dried or they will be attacked by diseases such as mould fungus.
The stalks and calyx can stop attack by the mould fungus but these may be removed before selling.
3. Chillies must be dried until they become stiff and can still bend but not break into pieces.
4. Store dried chillies in clean copra sacks or plastic bags.
Before selling pick out any chillies that are mouldy or badly-coloured.
Store chillies on a platform in a clean dry shed.
5. Chillies can be stored a refrigerator for about 10 days.
6. Save some seed by isolating a few plants with healthy fruit with netting to prevent cross-pollination, then scraping fully-ripened fruits
to collect the round flat seeds and dry them well before storage.

11.0 Marketing
1. The student must understand what happens to the chilli crop when it is sold.
The teacher can bring about this understanding in two ways as set out in 2. and 3. 2.
Explain the steps in the chain of commerce: farmer, buyer, transporter, exporter, overseas transporter, overseas importer, factory,
Can you answer the following questions:
Who buys the chillies?
What is the price?
Who transports them to the main port?
Who exports them from the main port?
Who transports them overseas?
Who imports them overseas?
What factory processes them? (The importer and factory may be the same.)
Who uses or consumes the chillies? What do they use them for?
3. When you are ready to sell the chillies make sure that the students see them being sold, know who the buyer is, and see any
financial documents such as receipts of the sale.

1. Village people sell their farm produce in the local market,
but chillies are sold on the international market to buyers overseas.
The steps in this marketing are like a chain.
2. Ask the students where the chillies go to, then tell them about the steps of the chain and who the people are in these steps.
3. The first step after the farmer is the buyer.
Write down the name and address of buyer, price paid, and copy the receipt on to the chalkboard.
4. What is the function of a market?
How is an international market different from a local village market?
How do prices change in the village market compared with prices in the international market?

12.0 Chilli crop report
1. It is important to teach the students to analyse the chilli project by using records in their notebooks and in the teacher's crop diary to
produce a report on the yield and income of the chilli project.
2. This analysis will mean more to the student if it is possible to involve records of his or her own chilli bush and harvest.
You will have to decide which data to use and when to collect final data for yield.
The data of a crop report is all the information about the important happenings and measurements during the project.
When growing crops in the modern way to get maximum crop yield and maximum profit you need accurate data in a crop report.
Continual harvesting and regular watering during the warmer months will encourage more setting of fruit.
The following data can be used in the report:
2.1 Date seeds planted and number of student hours of work to build nursery.
2.2 Date transplanted and number of student hours of work to transplant.
3. Record the following:
3.1 Date and amount of first picking (student's own bush)
3.2. Total pickings (student's own bush) call this "total wet weight"
4. Record the following:
4.1 Date and amount of first picking (all bushes)
4.2 Date and amount of second picking (all bushes)
4.3 Date and amount of third picking (all bushes)
4.4 Total pickings (all bushes) call this total wet weight
4.5 Total dried weight (student's own bush)
4.6 Total dried weight (all bushes)
4.7 Total number of student hours for maintenance and picking (student's own bush)
4.8 Total number of student hours for maintenance and pickings (all bushes).

13.0 Income
1. The chilli project takes a long time from planting seeds to selling.
The student must be able to see the project as a whole.
This can be done by writing a report based on their records and experiences.
2. There are different ways listed below of summarizing the project so that it can be compared to other projects.
Select the calculations you wish to apply to your project:
2.1 Percentage dry weight.
(Expect 33% for Tabasco variety and 25% for Indian or Long Red variety)
percentage dry weight = (Total dry weight / Total wet weight) × 100 = per cent
2.2 Gross income (Selling prices vary, but for this exercise assume that selling price of Tabasco variety is 48 cents / kilogram, and for
Indian or Long Red variety is 26 cents/kilogram.)
Gross income = Total dry weight × 48 (Tabasco) / 1 00 = $. or
Gross income = Total dry weight × 26 (Indian Long Red) / 100 = $.
2.3 Production per bush,
Total dry weight / number of bushes =. Kg/bush
2.4 Production per hectare (per ha) (at this spacing of bushes)
Total dry weight × 100 × 100 Kg / hectare (11 ha 100 × 100 metres) area of chilli garden in square metres
2.5 Income per hectare
Production per hectare × 48 (Tabasco) $ / hectare
Production per hectare × 26 (Indian Long Red) = $ per hectare
2.6 Income per student, day (assume that a student can work for 8 hours in one day)
Gross income × 8 / Total student hours worked = $ per student hour worked
(Total student hours worked includes time planting, transplanting, garden maintenance, picking, drying and storing.)
3.1 Inputs: Land used, seeds, labour, fertilizer, insecticide
Output: chillies (as yield in Kg or as returns in $)
3.2 To know how much of each input is needed to produce the output, divide the output by different items of the input.
4. Ask students to suggest the following:
4.1. how to measure output
4.2 how to measure how much of each item of input is needed.
5. When you grow crops the modern way you keep records of inputs into the farm and the output of the farm.
Then you can measure how much of each input is needed to produce the output.
6. Teacher tells students to calculate output and some measurements of how much of each input is needed to produce the output.

13.1 Profits
1. Calculate the profit of chilli projects as with a vegetable project.
However, the chilli project takes much longer so you have to apply what figures you have to estimate the profit.
1.1 Returns: The money you receive for the chillies (output)
1.2 Costs: The money you pay for all the things you need in the project (input)
Establishment costs are the total costs of things you can use for a long time.
Assume that things bought under the heading of establishment costs will last 5 years.
Therefore the yearly cost of these things is cost / 5.
This is called depreciation.
Production costs are the total costs of things that you use up in the project.
1.3. Profit: The money left over when you take costs from returns
2. Fill in the following table:
Returns $
Production costs $
seeds $
fertilizer $
insecticide $
tractor hire $
labour $
Establishment costs
nursery $
tools $
drier $
bags $
(Profit = Returns - Production costs - Establishment costs)
Calculate the profit for the period from start of project to last harvest.
3. However, if you assume that the chilli bushes can produce good crops for 2 years, then calculate the estimated profit for the 3
years when the land is being used for the project.

14.0 Visits
1. Arrange for the class to visit a nearby chilli garden.
2. You must visit the chilli project yourself first, tell the owners when you will be coming with the class, and think about what
observations you will require the students to make when they go there.
3. Make up a list of questions that can be duplicated, so that the students can take this with them and know what to look for.
4. Introduce the students to the owners of the chilli garden.
5. Record the answers to the following questions:
5.1 Who owns the chilli crop and who does the work on the project?
5.2 What help did the agriculture field staff give?
5.3 Where did the seed come from?
Was a nursery used?
When did they plant out?
What spacing was used?
5.4 Count the chilli bushes?
What area of land was used?
5.5 Are there any weeds, pests diseases?
How are they treated?
5.5 When did picking start?
What was the yield or wet weight?
How are the chillies dried?
What yield, dry weight?
How are they sold?
What prices do they bring?
6. Let the village people tell the students the answers to the questions in their own language.
Later you could ask agriculture field staff to answer questions when the village people do not know the answers.
7. Compare information about this chilli garden with information about the chilli project at school.

15.0 Diet
1. Chillies contain ascorbic acid, Capsaicin, capsanthin, decanoic acid, pelargonic acid, riboflavin, solanine.
2. Chilli fruits are used to stimulate gastric activities and may help the circulation of the blood.
3. Some people say that chillies are a very healthy food, because there are so many vitamins in them.
Chillies are used in many countries to give a special taste to food.
Why not teach students how to eat them?
Some people called "chilli lovers" say that chillies are addictive.
If this is so it may be because chillies cause the body to release endorphins causing a mild euphoria.

2. You must be very careful when teaching students to handle chillies.
The seeds and inside ribs can sting the mouth and eyes.
Never let students touch their eyes after handling chillies.
If they do handle them, wash with a weak sodium bicarbonate solution to stop the stinging.
Chillies can be made less hot by soaking in cold salt water for half an hour before using.
Bring some fresh and dried chillies to the lesson in the kitchen.

15.1 Cooking Chillies
1. Chillies in vinegar
Drop some fresh chillies into a jar of vinegar and screw the top on tightly.
After about ten days you can try tasting the soaked chillies.

2. Preparing chillies for cooking
Wash the chillies.
Fill a bowl with water and working under water pull out stalks, break chillies in half, rub out seeds and inside ribs with fingers.
Keep the chilli walls only.
Leave torn pieces of chillies soaked in water before use.

3. Chilli sauce
Make many different chilli sauces by chopping or pounding chillies by hand (or using a kitchen blender), with any of the following:
onion, ginger, lemon juice, vinegar, coconut milk, salt.
When this becomes a thick paste pour into a jar, cover with peanut oil, then put the lid on tightly and leave for half a day before use.
Chinese people use chilli sauce by cutting pork or beef into pieces, frying it, then they dip each piece into chilli sauce before eating.

4. Chicken and vegetable soup
1 chicken cut into pieces 1 piece of chopped pumpkin
2 litres water handful of beans or peas
4 chopped tomatoes 2 teaspoons of salt
2 chopped baby corn 2 fresh chillies already chopped
4 chopped yams or sweet potatoes with seeds and ribs removed
Bring chicken in water to boil, skim off foam and scum, simmer on low heat for 45 minutes.
Add all vegetables and salt, simmer on low heat for 20 minutes until yam or sweet potato is just cooked.
You could try adding chillies to other soups or stews.

16.0 Chilli wine
1. Wash large whole chillies, put in screw jar then pour rum over them and screw the top on tightly.
After ten days use for flavouring soups.
2. Use 30 g citric acid, 375 g sugar, 1 tablespoon (15-25 mL) lemon essence, 1 tablespoon (15-25 mL) caramel, 2 litres of water.
Pound chillies and citric acid together, then place top of sugar in a bowl.
Pour boiling water over the chillies then add lemon essence and caramel.
Strain the mixture and put into bottles.
3. Tabasco sauce is made from chillies ground with salt and vinegar then aged in oak barrels.
Sambal paste used in Malaysia is made from crushed chillies cured in salt.

17.0 Paprika
Ground spice condiment made mainly from red dried sweet peppers (bell peppers), with perhaps some dried chili pepper and cayenne
Paprika extract, paprika oleoresin, Food additive E160c, is the orange to red oil-soluble colouring and flavouring extract from
Capsicum annuum.
Dried paprika may be sold as paprika fruit flakes and powder.
Paprika contains mainly the phenol capsaicin, C18H27NO3, and the tetraterpenoids (carotenoids), xanthophylls:
Capsanthin, C40H56O3, keto-carotenoid pigment (ketone), Food additive E160c, and
Capsorubin, C40H56O4, keto-carotenoid pigment (ketone), Food additive E160c, red paprika pigment.

17.1 Capsaicin
See diagram 16.21.12: Capsaicin
Capsaicin, Zostrix, C18H27NO3, Protoalkaloid
Capsaicin, alkaloid with nitrogen in the side chain, (protoalkaloid), benzylamine alkaloid, cyclic amide,
alkylamide, corrosive, acute toxic, irritant, causes capsicum pungency, contains an alkylamide which affects
TRPV cation channels - "transient receptor potential" channels"are six protein families on the plasma membrane
that contribute to heat and inflammation sensations and mediates the pungent odour and pain sensations associated
with capsaicin, chilli pepper extract, dark red solid, highly volatile pungent odour, burning taste detectable
1 part in 100, 000, almost insoluble in cold water 10.3 mg/L, soluble in alcohol, analgesic
topically to control peripheral nerve pain.
Capsaicin may blister the skin and its vapour may irritate mucous membranes.
Capsaicin is used as a topical counter-irritant analgesic cream for osteoarthritis pain in adults only, e.g. "Axsain".
1. Chilli fruits are hollow with carotenoid pigments in the outer wall and white seeds on the pale placenta tissue.
The surface cells of the placenta produce capsaicin that is store in droplets just below the surface of the placenta.
Some capsaicin does travel to the wall of the fruit and other parts of the plant.
Any pressure on the placenta causes it to split and release the capsaicin.
So to avoid most of the capsaicin cooks must scrape out the placenta and seeds.
1. Treat the burning feeling from chillies, "curry overdose", with the following;
1.1 milk reduces discomfort due to the fats it contains,
1.2 fruit juice,
1.3 milk chocolate,
1.4. lots of water, but the discomfort immediately returned once the water leaves the mouth.
1.5. a weak solution of sodium bicarbonate.
Some people recommend lessening capsaicin pain by eating crushed ice or rough solids, e.g. dry biscuits or white sugar.
Treat capsaicin in the eyes with lots of cold water.
Chilli fruit contain a substance called capsaicin (methyl vanillyl nonenamide), mainly in the pithy placenta regions around the seeds and
internal membranes, which can sting the lips and eyes, causing an intense burning sensation that may be relieved by drinking full fat milk,
(creamy milk).
The burning sensation is not caused by temperature and the membranes affected are not at a higher temperature.
The burning sensation is just a chemical irritation that affect the heat sensitive cells in the mucous membranes of the mouth and nose.
However, birds are not affected by capsaicin.
Do not touch the lips or eyes with the fingers after touching the chillies.
The burning feeling usually fades after 15 minutes.

17.2 Scoville Heat Units (SHUs)
The amount of heat is expressed in Scoville Heat Units (SHUs), named after American chemist Wilbur L. Scoville in 1912.
The scale was based on the experience of tasters with an overnight alcoholic extraction then tasting, then increase dilution of the
extraction until the taste cannot be detected.
So the more it can be tasted after successive diluted extraction, the higher the Scoville score.
Nowadays liquid chromatography is used to measure the concentration of capsaicin in Scoville heat units.
Bell peppers are given a Scoville score of zero pungency.
So the degree of hotness depended on the required dilution until the chilli no longer felt hot.

Heat chart
Pure capsaicin 15 million to 17 million SHUs
US pepper spray (for police use) 2 million + SHUs
(Bhut Jolokkia, Ghost Chilki) from India and Bangladesh is 855, 000 to over 1 million SHUs
Habanero 200, 000 - 300, 000 SHUs
Bird's eye chilli, Capsicum frutescens, 100, 000 - 225, 000 SHUs
Dried herb sold as fruit powder
Herbal medicine, ease arthritis pain, digestive disorders, toothache
Ripe tabasco peppers 50, 000 SHUs
Cayenne pepper varieties 35, 000 SHUs
Dried herb sold as fruit powder.
Commercially ground chilli powder 8, 000 - 10, 000 HUs.
Tabasco sauce is 2, 500 to 5, 000 SHUs,
Jalapeno peppers is 2, 500 to 8, 000\
Bell peppers zero SHUs
Bell peppers are homozygous recessive and lack the dominant gene for capsaicin production.
The relative hotness of some varieties is as follows:
Anaheim 2, Jalapeno 5, Purple delight 6, Siam 7, Cayenne 8, Bell 9 (ornamental), Thai Rainbow (pot plant) 7, Birdseye 9, Habanero
and Tepin 10+.

3. Capsaicin is an oil, insoluble in water, but soluble in fats and alcohol, so if your mouth is burnt by chillies, drink milk, not water!
Chillies feel hot in the mouth at room temperature because the capsaicin "tricks" the brain into thinking that something is very hot in the
mouth when it is not.
Capsaicin makes us feel hotter and causes sweating, reddening of the skin and increased metabolic rate.
It is the natural protection and dispersal mechanism of the chilli plant to attract herbivores to eat its attractive fruits, then spit out the
seeds with the attached capsaicin.
Dry chilli powder can catch alight by spontaneous combustion.
4. The five species of capsicum peppers native to the New World are C. pubescens, C. baccatum, C. annuum, C. frutescens
and C. chinense.
Capsicum frutescens, birdseye, bird's eye chilli, African devil chilli, tiny, green and when matured the colour changes to bright red,
can contain between 50, 000-100, 000 Scoville units
The hottest chile peppers belong the C. chinense group, including the habanero probably from the Amazon river region of South
The active ingredient is the alkaloid capsaicin.
5. Capsaicin is not broken down during the digestion process.
Capsaicin is soluble in fats, but not in water, so drinking water does not lessen the pain of a hot chilli mouth, but drinking milk or
yoghurt may reduce the pain.
Capsaicin may discourage mammalian fruit predators.
However, many birds are immune to the burning sensation of capsaicin, and may disperse the seeds.
Some fruit eating birds who are attracted to bright red fruits and can let the seeds pass through the digestive tract unharmed and
disperse them to other regions.
The highest capsaicin concentration is found in the placental region where the seeds are attached.
6. In general, the hot species or varieties, usually Capsicum annuum, are called chilli, chillies, chilli peppers, hot peppers (chilli or chile
peppers in USA), chile and guindilla, but the species or varieties that are not hot are called capsicums, bell peppers, peppers, sweet
peppers, green peppers, red peppers, pimiento, ají.
7. A pepper spray unit may have a SHU rating of two million.
The spray is used by police for aggressive crowd control.
It makes breathing and seeing difficult for some time.
A recent report suggests that some people who died after police had sprayed them with pepper spray containing capsaicin had recently
taken cocaine.
So capsaicin may react with cocaine to produce a lethal effect.
However, the pepper spray used by police may be 2, 000, 000 to 5, 300, 000 on the Scoville scale, so people with respiratory conditions,
e.g. asthma, may die if the irritated mucous membranes of the respiratory passages may swell enough if inflamed to cause death.
Compounds similar to capsaicin that also occur in chillies include dihydrocapsaicin, homocapsaicin, homodihydrocapsaicin,
norhydrocapsaicin, and nonivamide.

Before teaching this project, discuss the content of the lessons with a field officer of the Ministry of Agriculture, and get advice on
planting material, planting distances, the local field officer of the Ministry of Agriculture.
If you cannot control insects by hand-picking, ask the Ministry of Agriculture to recommend a chemical spray.
All insect sprays are dangerous. Be able to demonstrate the safe use of sprays.
Do not get the spray onto your hands.
Do not breathe in the spray.
Wash your hands well after using spray.
Keep the spray container in a safe place under lock and key.
Spray on a day of no wind but if you must spray when there is a wind, spray down wind.
Make sure the spray does not blow on other people.