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Why Your Planted Peppers Don't Match The Seed Packet
Across the U.S., gardeners are growing peppers only to discover they aren’t the variety on the seed packet. Social media users have dubbed this problem "peppergate."
The first thing growers often do is ask themselves what they did wrong, but the answer is usually nothing. The fault lies with the planted seed and how or why it was mislabeled.
The problem leading to "peppergate" may have started with seeds harvested during the last growing season, which can cross-pollinate with other plants to become hybrid seeds.
It’s possible that a seed company made a large cross-pollination mistake, leading to incorrectly labeled seeds. Unfortunately, these cross-pollinated varieties rarely taste good.
Only four companies currently control about 60 percent of the global seed market, so a single seed mix-up at one of those organizations could result in a nationwide problem.
However, another possible cause is a simple seed mix-up. If you dumped seed packets from two different types of peppers in your hand, you would not be able to tell the difference.