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Pepper Frequently-Asked Questions (FAQ)
Following are answers to frequently-asked questions about hot peppers. If you have any additional questions about hot peppers, ask us!
How Many Different Kinds of Peppers Are There?
What Colors Do Peppers Come In?
Are Peppers Annuals or Perennials?/Can I Grow a Pepper More than 1 Year?
Can I Grow Peppers In Containers?
Can I Grow Peppers Indoors?
If I Grow Hot Peppers Close To Bell Peppers, Will It Make My Bell Peppers Hot?
What Makes Peppers Hot?
What is the Hottest Part of a Pepper?
Why Doesn't Water Stop My Mouth From Burning?
Can Peppers Make You "Feel Good"?
Are Peppers Good For You?

 Answers:
Q: How Many Different Kinds of Peppers Are There?
A: There are thousands of different varieties of peppers! There are also over 30 different species of pepper, only 5 of which are widely domesticated. See our detailed article on Pepper Varieties for more information.

Q: What Colors Do Peppers Come In?
A: Peppers come in almost every color of the rainbow! Green peppers are those that are normally picked before they are fully ripe, such as the Jalapeno. While red is the most common color for a ripe pepper, there are peppers that come in a variety of other colors, including orange, yellow, golden, pink, peach, brown, white and purple! There are even peppers that rotate through multiple colors, like the Bolivian Rainbow.

Q: Are Peppers Annuals or Perennials? / Can I Grow a Pepper More than 1 Year?
A: Most people are not aware that peppers are actually perennials! They are semi-tropical plants, and cannot handle cold weather. The reason they are normally grown as annuals is because the winter temperatures in most places will kill them! However, it is possible to keep a pepper plant alive for several years, via a process known as "overwintering".

Q: Can I Grow Peppers In Containers?
A: Yes, provided the container is large enough for the pepper, as too small of a container can stunt a pepper's growth. There are, in fact, several advantages to growing peppers in containers, even outdoors.

Q: Can I Grow Peppers Indoors?
A: Contrary to what you may have heard, provided you give them enough light and proper growing conditions, you can grow peppers successfully indoors. Some varieties, in fact, can make great (and quite colorful) houseplants!

Q: If I Grow Hot Peppers Close To Bell Peppers, Will It Make My Bell Peppers Hot?
A: No. Any cross-pollination that may occur between the two will only affect plants grown from the resulting seeds, not the current peppers that you are growing now.

Q: What Makes Peppers Hot?
A: A number of related compounds called capsaicinoids, the most well-known of which is capsaicin, is what gives peppers their "heat".

Q: What is the Hottest Part of a Pepper?
A: The hottest part of a pepper is the placental material surrounding the seeds. The seeds themselves are not hot, although capsaicin typically gets on the surface of the seeds from contact with the surrounding tissue.

Q: Why Doesn't Water Stop My Mouth From Burning?
A: Because the heat-producing capsaicin is not water-soluble! It does, however, dissolve in alcohol, vegetable oils and fats. If you want to "quench the fire", try yogurt, ice cream, or whole milk. Beer is also a quite popular if somewhat less effective remedy!

Q: Can Peppers Make You "Feel Good"?
A: It has been reported by some that hot peppers can produce a feeling of well-being, and even mild euphoria. It is believed the effect of extremely hot peppers on the pain receptors in your mouth causes the brain to release endorphins, nature's pain-killers, producing an effect similar to the "runner's high" experienced by marathon runners and athletes.

Q: Are Peppers Good For You?
A: Most definitely! They are low in calories, and the capsaicin in peppers also increases your body's metabolism. They are also high in potassium, very high in Vitamin A (several times daily nutritional requirements), and especially Vitamin C - even a small red pepper contains more Vitamin C than a whole orange!
More questions and answers coming soon! Be sure to bookmark this page and come back again!
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