TWO new varieties of chilli have been bred in Dorset.

The two new chillies - Cardiff Queen and Pixie Lights - have been created by Sea Spring Seeds as part of its chilli breeding programme.

Sea Spring Seeds, started by Joy and Michael Michaud 20 years ago, is a vegetable seed company based in West Bexington.

The company sells vegetable seeds of reliable, productive and good-tasting varieties that are suitable for the home and allotment garden.

They offer seeds of an extensive range of vegetables but specialise in chillies and sweet peppers as well as tomatoes, cucumbers, and salads.

Joy and Michael have bred several new chilli varieties, including Dorset Naga, which was the hottest chilli in the world when it was launched in 2006.

Among the two new chilli varieties which the couple have bred, Cardiff Queen has quickly become a new favourite.

Jo said: "One of our newest favourite chillies, Cardiff Queen yields lots of mildly hot fruit on short trailing plants. Measuring about 50mm long, the fruit are shaped like elongated cones and change from light green to an unusual orangey-red as they mature.

"With their trailing growth habit, the plants look particularly attractive when grown in pots, 3 to 5 litres in size; and they make great house or conservatory plants."

Spiciness in chillies is measured in Scoville Heat Units or SHU.

The heat level for Cardiff Queen is described as mild (approx. 3,500 SHU).

The second new variety is Pixie Lights.

Joy said: "Pixie Lights is an extraordinarily beautiful chilli, producing masses of hot, multi-coloured fruit.

"The unripe fruit are a lovely lilac purple, then they change colour – to yellow (tinged with purple), orange and finally red – as they ripen.

"The thin fruit are elongated and have an average length of about 35mm. They grow above the foliage, allowing the show of colours to be better appreciated.

"The short, busy plants have purple stems and dark leaves with purple veins. They are great performers when grown in pots 1 to 5 litres in volume.

The heat level for Pixie Lights is described as very hot (approx. 55,000 SHU).

Seeds of the new Cardiff Queen are available for free as part of the Great Dorset Chilli Festival.

To claim your seeds email