hot peppers from cold
peggy.pollak at NAU.EDU
Fri Feb 14 14:48:00 EST 1997
I believe that the question posted by Steffie Galgon about hot pepper fruits
resulting from the pollination of mild pepper flowers by hot pepper pollen
was misinterpreted. Many seed catalogues warn against growing hot peppers
anywhere near mild peppers. The pollen vector, be it wind or insect,is
irrelevant. The seed companies say that the resulting fruit will be hot. I
have actually experienced this in my many years of gardening. The question
is this: we know that there is no genetic input of the male parent into the
fruit produced that season (certainly it may appear in the next generation)
yet the fruit does become hotter. Assuming that I have done a good job of
cleaning all of the seeds out of the fruit, why is the fruit wall hot?
Could there be transport of capsicans from the seeds, across the placenta,
to the fruit wall? We usually think of transport being in the other
direction, supporting development of the seed. If transport does occur in
the opposite direction, why would this occur?
Thanks for any input on this puzzling question.
Peggy E. Pollak
Department of Biological Sciences
Northern Arizona University
Flagstaff, AZ 86011-5640
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