64th Street Specialties
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Chile Cultivars of New Mexico State University Released from 1913 to 2008
Rio Grande 21
A selection from a hybridization between New Mexico No. 6 and Anaheim produced Rio Grande 21; Dr. Harper released it
in 1967 (Harper, 1967). The cultivar was similar in maturity to New Mexico No. 9. It produced large, smooth, green pods with thick
flesh. Mature succulent pods were slightly flattened, elliptical in shape, with a slight longitudinal depression toward the blossom end.
The stem end was cylindrical and without prominent shoulders. The blossom end tapered to a medium point that did not have prominent lobes.
Rio Grande 21 mature pods averaged 6.70 inches in length and 1.73 inches at their widest. Rio Grande 21 averaged 8.5 mature
green and 44.3 dry red pods per pound. The fleshy, dry portion of the pod, exclusive of stem and seeds, averaged 66.2% of the dry red
fruit’s total weight—higher than the average for either Anaheim or New Mexico No. 9. The cultivar’s green pod yield averaged
15,436 lbs/acre. It was reported that Rio Grande 21 plants showed a slight tendency for poor fruit set during extremely high
temperature periods. The lower nodes on some plants were devoid of fruit, and heavy fruit set on the upper nodes resulted in a spreading-
type plant. Plants were normally 24 to 32 inches in height. Today, this cultivar is not grown widely in New Mexico.