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Capsicum_pubescens - Ruiz.&Pav.

Common Name Tree Pepper, Rocoto
Family Solanaceae
USDA hardiness 8-11
Known Hazards Although no reports have been seen for this species, many plants in this family produce toxins in their leaves. The sap of the plant can cause the skin to blister[200]. Avoid in patients taking monoamine oxidase inhibitor antidepressants and antihypertensive drugs [301].
Habitats Not known
Range S. America - Andes.
Edibility Rating    (3 of 5)
Other Uses    (1 of 5)
Weed Potential No
Medicinal Rating    (3 of 5)
Care (info)
Half Hardy Moist Soil Full sun
Capsicum_pubescens Tree Pepper, Rocoto


http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/User:Pepre
Capsicum_pubescens Tree Pepper, Rocoto

 

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Summary


Physical Characteristics

 icon of manicon of flower
Capsicum_pubescens is a PERENNIAL growing to 3 m (9ft) by 2 m (6ft).
See above for USDA hardiness. It is hardy to UK zone 9 and is frost tender. It is in flower from August to September. The species is hermaphrodite (has both male and female organs).
Suitable for: light (sandy), medium (loamy) and heavy (clay) soils and prefers well-drained soil. Suitable pH: mildly acid, neutral and basic (mildly alkaline) soils and can grow in very acid and very alkaline soils.
It cannot grow in the shade. It prefers moist soil.

UK Hardiness Map US Hardiness Map

Synonyms

Brachistus lanceifolius. Capsicum lanceifolium. Capsicum violaceum

Plant Habitats

Edible Uses

Fruit - raw or cooked[238]. The distinctive thick-fleshed pungent fruits are used as a vegetable condiment or made into a sauce[183]. A hot pungent flavour, it is mainly used as a flavouring in cooked foods[238]. In Peru the seeds are removed, the fruit stuffed with a savoury filling and then baked[183]. The fruit can be dried and ground into a powder for use as a pepper-like condiment[238].

References   More on Edible Uses

Medicinal Uses

Plants For A Future can not take any responsibility for any adverse effects from the use of plants. Always seek advice from a professional before using a plant medicinally.


The hot and pungent fruit is antihaemorrhoidal when taken in small amounts, antirheumatic, antiseptic, diaphoretic, digestive, irritant, rubefacient, sialagogue and tonic[7, 238]. It is taken internally in the treatment of the cold stage of fevers, debility in convalescence or old age, varicose veins, asthma and digestive problems[238]. Externally it is used in the treatment of sprains, unbroken chilblains, neuralgia, pleurisy etc[238]. The German Commission E Monographs, a therapeutic guide to herbal medicine, approve Capsicum for muscular tension, rheumatism (see [302] for critics of commission E).

References   More on Medicinal Uses

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Other Uses

The growing plant repels insects[20].

Special Uses

References   More on Other Uses

Cultivation details

Requires a very warm sunny position and a fertile well-drained soil. Tolerates a pH in the range 4.3 to 8.3. This species is only likely to be hardy in the milder areas of Britain, it can tolerate temperatures down to at least -5°c[238]. It might be possible to get it to fruit outdoors in the mildest areas of the country, especially if given the protection of a sunny wall[K]. Plants are able to continue fruiting for 15 years in cool moist climates[238].

References   Carbon Farming Information and Carbon Sequestration Information

Temperature Converter

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Plant Propagation

Seed - sow late winter to early spring in a warm greenhouse[138]. The seed usually germinates in 3 - 4 weeks at 20°c. Prick out the seedlings into individual pots of reasonably rich soil and grow them on fast. If trying them outdoors, then plant them out after the last expected frosts and give them the protection of a cloche or frame at least until they are established and growing away well.

Other Names

If available other names are mentioned here

Native Plant Search

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Found In

Countries where the plant has been found are listed here if the information is available

Weed Potential

Right plant wrong place. We are currently updating this section. Please note that a plant may be invasive in one area but may not in your area so it’s worth checking.

Conservation Status

IUCN Red List of Threatened Plants Status :

Related Plants
Latin NameCommon NameHabitHeightHardinessGrowthSoilShadeMoistureEdibleMedicinalOther
Capsicum pubescensTree Pepper, RocotoPerennial3.0 8-11  LMHNM331

Growth: S = slow M = medium F = fast. Soil: L = light (sandy) M = medium H = heavy (clay). pH: A = acid N = neutral B = basic (alkaline). Shade: F = full shade S = semi-shade N = no shade. Moisture: D = dry M = Moist We = wet Wa = water.

 

Expert comment

Author

Ruiz.&Pav.

Botanical References

200

Links / References

For a list of references used on this page please go here

Readers comment

david nicholls   Fri Jan 4 2008

I wonder if C.pubescens can support its' own weight. Deni Bown says it "may be espaliered or pruned", I've just grown a seedling 6 inches tall, it's already pretty floppy. I think i might stake it if it does have a problem with being erect, I like the idea of a 10 ft pepper. Any advice or suggestions?

Jo Bill   Tue Dec 8 2009

there's a one year old C. pubescens with two peppers by the window. the eight inch plant is supporting itself

   Oct 12 2013 12:00AM

I have friends growing this in outer melbourne, australia against a link fence. Has become quite dense and rambley. I have successfully harvested seeds from them and now have two plants about 1m high. Fruit are delicious and very hot. Makes great chili sauce.

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