While snow blizzards are still raging outside the window and the fierce frosts are icing over the soul, the soul is already singing in anticipation of spring, and for gardeners and gardeners the hottest time is beginning to pick and plant seeds of the most important vegetable crops for seedlings, without which the site will be lonely and lonely - tomatoes and peppers. If we are talking about February, then the time for sowing the seeds of most tomatoes has not yet come, but many of the peppers are already sowing time. But first you need to choose the variety that is most suitable for your site and for your growing conditions.
But this is a very difficult task, because in any seed store the colorful pictures on the bags start to feel dizzy and the choice is inconceivably difficult. Only 30-40 years ago, in the 70-80s, the choice of seeds of sweet pepper for planting was reduced to only three or four items: Gift of Moldova, Swallow, California miracle and Tenderness. And after all, these old varieties, having survived all the most difficult times, are still popular with gardeners and successfully grown in the vast expanses of our gigantic country. Perhaps this is no accident, and something valuable and reliable should be in them. Therefore, in this article we will discuss a rather old, but nonetheless not forgotten variety of sweet or bell pepper - Tenderness, the description and characteristics of which will be presented to your attention. As a result, you can conclude whether this variety of pepper is suitable for your conditions or not.
Back in 1982, scientists and breeders of the Institute of Plant Genetic Resources. Vavilova, located in St. Petersburg, brought a new variety of sweet pepper and called it Tenderness. Perhaps because in those years, A. Pakhmutova’s song of the same name was at the peak of popularity, and perhaps because of the delicate properties of the skin and pulp of the pepper fruit. One way or another, but in 1986 the Tenderness pepper variety was officially introduced into the State Register of Russia and began its distribution throughout the country. Currently, pepper seeds of this variety are mainly supplied by the production and trading company “Euro-seeds”, which is also one of the originators.
In those days, the cultivation of sweet pepper in the open field was distributed only in the southern regions of the country. Polycarbonate greenhouses were not yet, and glass was too expensive. Under the conditions of the middle lane, and even more so in the north or in Siberia, some solitary enthusiasts tried to grow sweet peppers in film tunnels or homemade greenhouses, which, judging by the reviews, it was possible for them. Indeed, Pepper Tenderness was recommended for cultivation in greenhouses even in the Murmansk and Arkhangelsk regions, as well as on Sakhalin, on Kamchatka and in the Primorsky Territory. And in those days, words to the wind did not throw. It turns out that this variety can tolerate some shading, and grows well on the condition of prolonged daylight. Also, the pepper variety Tenderness is quite adapted to short-term temperature drops, as well as to fairly strong temperature changes.Comment! Indeed, in the northern edges, the differences between day and night temperatures, even under film covers, can be quite significant.
All these properties still allow it to be widely used in the so-called risk farming areas.
Interestingly, the southern regions of modern Russia were not specified in the recommendations for cultivation, because at that time there existed their own interesting varieties for them: the Gift of Moldova, the California miracle. And Pepper Tenderness was bred specifically to satisfy the needs of northern gardeners to grow Bulgarian pepper in their plots.
Shrubs of the Tenderness variety, although they are standard and limited in height, can reach a height of 120-140 cm. These powerful plants with a thick central stem have strong sprawling to the sides, well-branched stems from medium-sized leaves.
Because of their growth, they require special pruning and shaping, which will be discussed in more detail later.
Variety Tenderness is usually attributed to sredneranim peppers, that is, on average, the period from the emergence of shoots to the technical maturity of the fruit is 105-115 days, but in particularly favorable conditions, maturation can begin even after 90-95 days from the moment of full germination.
The yield of the variety Tenderness strongly depends on how conscientiously you can take the procedure for the formation of the bush. If you do not find the time or effort to carry out this procedure for the care, then from one bush can get only about 1-1.5 kg of pepper. With proper formation, the yield can be increased several times and the pepper will ripen much faster than without pruning.
Resistance to diseases and pests in peppers Tenderness is average, but again, correct pruning will help improve the ventilation of the bushes and prevent the penetration and spread of infection and the villains of pests.
But, as already discussed above, the Tenderness variety has increased endurance and weather resistance, which is unfavorable for the development of peppers.
The following characteristics are peculiar to the fruits of the Tenderness pepper variety:
- The shape of the peppers is standard - conical, but often takes the form of a truncated cone. Although according to the standard of sweet peppers they must wilt down, the peppers of this variety often grow and keep the tops up for a rather long time before bending under their weight. This form of growth is a bit like how usually hot peppers grow.
- The fruits are distinguished by medium size, reach a length of 15 cm, the mass of one pepper is from 100 to 150 grams.
- At the stage of technical maturity, the color of peppers is light green, as it ripens it becomes orange first and then bright red.
- The skin is tender and thin, and the flesh is also quite juicy.
- The average wall thickness is 6-7 mm. For the old variety these numbers are quite significant.
- The taste of the fruit is excellent. Peppers are sweet, with a barely noticeable mustard aftertaste, and fragrant.
- By application, the fruits of this variety can be called universal. According to reviews of hostesses, they are most often used for stuffing.
Features of growing
Pepper Seeds Tenderness can be sown on seedlings at home from the second half of February to mid-March. Typically, pepper seeds germinate for quite a long time - 2-3 weeks.Tip! If you want to speed up the emergence of shoots, it is recommended to soak the seeds before planting for a day in one of the growth stimulant solutions, or at least in warm, melt water.
The pepper shoots appear fastest when the temperature is + 25 ° + 27 ° С. But after the emergence of shoots, it is advisable to place the shoots in a well-lit and cooler place with normal room temperature so that the seedlings do not stretch and develop harmoniously. Pick or transplant in separate cups is carried out when two true leaves are formed in plants.
A couple of weeks after transplanting, seedlings of pepper can be fed for the first time with a solution of humate (20-25 ml of humate per 10 liters of water). As soon as the young pepper plants reach 15–20 cm and begin branching, the formation of bushes can begin.
Forming and trimming
For tall varieties of pepper, which includes Tenderness, shaping and pruning are necessary because they allow you to solve several problems at once:
- Removing excess vegetative mass, which selects nutrients from the fruit, allows the peppers to reduce the ripening time, increase the harvest and grow larger fruits.
- Thinning above ground mass improves the illumination of the remaining parts of the bush and allows air to circulate freely inside the bushes, preventing pests and infections from breeding.
Proper formation is usually carried out in several stages and begins at the stage of growing seedlings.
After the first branching forms on the seedlings, the first bud begins to form at its fork. Sometimes there are several. The botanists call this bud corona and it is customary to remove it (or them) so that further branching of the peppers and budding takes place in an optimal way.Important! If you need to collect your seeds from pepper Tenderness, then on one or two bushes the crown bud is left, since it is in its fruit that the healthiest seeds are formed, which are best allowed for further reproduction.
When planting pepper seedlings Tenderness in the ground at a permanent place per square meter leave no more than 3-4 plants.
The first branches, which grow from branching, are called skeletal, or shoots of the first order - they will form in the future the main skeleton of the pepper bush. They, in turn, also begin to branch. Each time, in the process of formation of two new shoots, only one of them is left to grow - the strongest. The other is carefully removed, leaving a leaf and an ovary below.
This method of formation is called double-stem keeping, and it is the most optimal for growing tall peppers in greenhouses in northern latitudes.
Each week it is also necessary to gradually remove one or two leaves from the lower part of the trunk, so that in the end, only one bare trunk remains below the first fork in the stem.Attention! Pruning and leaf removal should be gradual. You can not remove from the pepper at one time too many shoots and leaves.
During development on the stems below the branches, additional leaves and shoots will begin to form again. They also need to be very gradually removed, especially those that obscure the resulting fruit.
The formation procedure also includes a garter of tall bushes to supports or a trellis and the removal of yellow and dry leaves.
For the formation of decent yields of pepper Tenderness will also require regular watering and fertilizing.
Many gardeners grow pepper Tenderness, because their mothers and grandmothers still raised it, for others it is this variety that can not only survive, but also bear fruit in difficult northern conditions. Reviews of all who came across this variety of pepper are mostly positive.Maria, 29 years old, Kostroma, has heard about Pepper Tenderness from her grandmother - she hardly recognizes modern varieties and hybrids at all. Has found and ordered through the Internet seeds. On the plot we have two greenhouses - in one of them and planted seedlings of Tenderness. It developed normally, without any particular claims, and, in my opinion, it did not differ in any way from tomatoes. Butonov formed quite a lot, but they developed slowly, despite the watering and feeding. But still, by August about a dozen peppers had been formed on the bush. Some of them even managed to blush. I quite liked the variety.
Raisa, 53 years old, Kirov region I have a lot of gardening experience, I have tried many varieties in my life. Peppers in our northern conditions a little that grows. I stopped at three varieties - Bogatyr, Health and Tenderness. They are guaranteed to bring the crop every year, grow not very large in height, and the fruits have time to ripen. If you plant seeds for seedlings around mid-February, then from mid-July, you can collect already ripe peppers. And they bear fruit to the cold. I grow them on a raised warm garden under arcs, which I stretch a spanbond, if that.Victor, 47 years old, Ulyanovsk. We grew pepper in the last season. Tenderness. An interesting sort of this - if an ordinary pepper hangs heads down, then this one would stand upwards. It matures well, it is very convenient to collect it, because the stem is short and easily breaks off. And he liked the taste of the whole family - really more tender than many other varieties.
Pepper Tenderness, being a truly old proven variety, is unlikely to let you down even in the most difficult growth conditions. Its external and taste qualities are not inferior to modern varieties, therefore, for growing in greenhouses in the northern regions, it is the most suitable option.