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This season we had bumper harvests of two chile pepper varieties:  the Yellow Jalapeno and Cyklon.  The Cyklon chile ripens red and is about 3 inches long with a medium hot heat scale.  We also had a strong showing of the Lipstick Sweet Pepper.

Other peppers that we grew out on a much smaller scale included Thai and Laotian.   The big surprise of the season was the Ground Cherry Tomato, which is amazingly sweet, like a pineapple dipped in honey.  They were a big hit at the two places I exhibited my peppers at this year:  Sheldon Fun-Days in Sheldon, Illinois, and, of course, at Garfield Farm Museum at the Annual Heirloom Show.

Although the Harvest Season went well, I didn't get to save as many seeds as I had hoped or make as many chile products as I would prefer (or take any of my traditional harvest photos) to make for two major reasons.  The first reason is WE'VE MOVED!   We've relocated from our apartment in Rosemont to a house in Tinley Park.  For those of you who are familiar with Our Story, you might be wondering, 'will Jimmy change the name of his chile operations back to Jimmy's Tinley Chiles?' Well let me stop the rumor right here and clarify that the name Jimmy's Chiles will stay the same.  I love Tinley Park, but the Jimmy's Chiles name has grown on me.  Relocating from an apartment – along with getting the house to how we wanted it to be – to a house is incredibly time-consuming, and since we moved in October when harvesting efforts peak, my harvesting and processing efforts were hindered.

The other major reason is that I'm a bit of a news/current events addict, and September 11th kept me glued to my TV MUCH MORE than usual.  There's much I'd like to say about this event and our War on Terrorism, but I'll keep it short, and just say a couple of things: 

1.      It is my prayer and hope that our government will wise up and dramatically change our lax INS (Immigration and Naturalization Services) policies.  It's obscene to allow people who hate our country in here on visas or via other means; 

2.      I've read one story (Time or Newsweek was it?) where our Intelligence Services have uncovered terrorist plans to target our FBI.  And while we initially thought the terrorists we're targeting the Federal Bureau of Investigations, we have since learned that the FBI acronym refers to our Food and Beverage Industry!   Because of these diabolical intentions, I am strongly encouraging you, my fellow Americans and good people around the planet, to grow a VICTORY GARDEN this summer, and every summer for the rest of your life to help combat these bastiches who would target our food supplies!  Get to know your local nursery better!   Start saving seeds and establishing relationships with other Seed Sources.  I don't care if you ever order seeds from me, but I do care that you're able to grow some of your own food, and that you are able to establish some independence in your seed strategy, which means growing heirloom varieties, and not having to always rely on a hybrid seed supplier.  So in the spirit of the Patriot on Flight 93 who said 'Let's Roll', I say to you:

 Let's Plant

 Let's Nurture

 Let's Harvest

 Let's Process and Preserve

 Let's Store

 Let's Save Our Seeds

 Let's Share

 Let's Win the War Against Terrorism!





Jimmy at Garfield Farm’s Heirloom Show:    


Jimmy at Sheldon Fun-Days in Sheldon, IL

Fellow Americans checking out seeds, chiles and ground cherry tomatoes (and sampling some Flames of the Holy Spirit hot sauce)

Nothing like enhancing a chicken meal with some peppers

Chef Dean working his magic with the chicken and peppers

Bolivian Tepins in a container – look closely and you can see purple, yellow, orange and red chiles.


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Last Updated:  Dec-2001