Plant Guide: Chilli Fire and Ice

Plant Guide: Chilli Fire and Ice

Summer’s just around the corner! With the weather starting to heat up, its the perfect time for the sweet and crisp blend of chilli fire and ice. 

A cool name for a fiery-looking plant! So what exactly is this chilli? How do you grow it, how does it taste?  Here’s everything you can expect from your new chilli plant.

The Story

The fire and ice chilli is a variety of the cayenne pepper. The scientific name for this colourful plant is capsicum annuum. The capsicum family is a popular and widely cultivated genus, including jalapenos, chilli peppers, and - you guessed it - capsicum! Fire and Ice chillies are closely related to cayenne peppers. They are mildly hot, and are often cultivated for their ornamental value. The fire and ice chilli was bred with spectacle in mind: as it ripens, its colours shift through all the hues of the sunset. These chillies are bright yellows, oranges, and reds, that stick up straight towards the sky. It’s like having little tufts of flame to brighten up your garden.

Cayenne peppers come from the Americas, and found their start in pre-Columbian times. Its origins in Mexico can be traced back to 7,000 years ago, and to Peru 4,000 years ago. Native people of these regions used the herbs in traditional medicines. These aimed to cure stomach pains, stomach cramps, and circulatory disorders.  

Health Benefits

  • Better sleep

Recent reports from Australian researchers have shown that a good dose of chilli can assist your sleeping habits, and improve your energy levels while you’re awake.

  • Improve Heart Health

Studies have shown that eating chillies helps to lower cholesterol, improving heart health and allowing more blood to reach the heart.

  • Improve Stomach Health

Chillies have been used for thousands of years in stomach-soothing remedies. They not only help to calm an irritated stomach, but also reduce inflammation and treat gastric infections.

  • Lose Weight

Chilli is effective in aiding weight loss. It does this in a number of ways: including kick-starting the body’s metabolism, suppressing appetite, and converting fat-storing white fat cells to brown ones.

Growing tips

  • As with most chilli varieties, fire and ice chillies can be a bit slow to germinate. They will usually sprout in 7-10 days, but may take up to 2 weeks.  
  • Germination may be faster in warmer conditions, around 26℃ / 79℉.
  • Make sure to spread your seeds evenly across the coir, to give each one ample room to grow.
  • These chillies can be transplanted to your garden when they reach 6-7cm tall. 
  • The fire & ice chillies will turn from yellow, to orange, to red as they ripen. They can be picked and eaten while yellow, but will develop slightly more heat as they turn red. 
  • While waiting for your chillies to ripen, caring for the plant by cleaning any wilted leaves or dead flowers.
  • As with most chillies, the edible peppers contain more seeds. Once your plant is mature, cut one of the chillies open and scrape out the seeds: you’ll be able to grow even more!

How hot is it?

Fire and ice chillies are what’s known as an ‘ornamental’ variety. This means they are not necessarily known for their heat. The heat levels of this chilli will develop somewhat as it ripens from yellow to red: but on the whole, they are very mild and have sweet undertones. This makes them perfect to use as a garnish to bring the wow factor with any dish!


Once you have all your chillies ready, you can choose to roast them, pickle them, dry them, or eat them as is! Fire and ice chillies work especially well as a garnish, adding a little extra flavour to any dish. They aren’t overwhelming in heat, and have a subtle sweet, crisp taste. You will be sure to find tons of fun recipes to incorporate them! Salsa, salads, sandwiches - the sky’s the limit. 

Here are some of our favourite recipes to use these chillies with:

Fish Tacos

  fish tacos

Million Dollar Dip

      million dollar dip

    Roasted Red Pepper Tortilla Soup

        roasted red pepper soup

      Homemade Salsa

          homemade salsa