The Aloha Pepper, also known as the Enjoya pepper, is a gorgeous bell pepper that looks a little different than you might expect. It’s a mottled, slightly striped pepper that looks like a red pepper mixed with a yellow pepper.
Aloha peppers range in color from primarily bright red to mostly yellow-orange, but they’ve been a popular pepper for foodies ever since they’ve hit the markets.
Of course, when gardeners saw the Aloha pepper for the first time, they immediately wanted to own one of their own. But, like all new cultivars and plants, can you grow Aloha peppers from seeds?
You cannot grow Aloha peppers from seeds. All Aloha peppers are cloned from a single plant with a unique mutation, leading to the mixed coloration and flavor of the Aloha pepper. Only one of the two types of pepper in each Aloha pepper produces seeds: the yellow part. The red part of the fruit is infertile, and there aren’t any peppers yet that have had the same mutation as the original plant.
Suppose you’ve encountered cloned cultivars in your gardening before. In that case, you’re probably already familiar with how these unique plants are often intentionally limited, making it harder for hobby growers to get their own plants to keep the resulting fruits and vegetables rarer and more valuable.
Sadly, the story of the Aloha pepper isn’t that different from those other cloned cultivars. You might be able to find them in your grocery store, but since seed saving isn’t going to work with these beautiful peppers, it might be harder to get your hands on a plant.
Let’s talk about why.
Why Are Aloha Peppers So Special?
There are a few reasons Aloha peppers are special. The first is simple: the multicolored flesh of an Aloha pepper looks different, which means that consumers are more likely to buy them out of interest or because they seem exotic.
But probably the biggest reason the Aloha pepper is so special is that it’s unique. No other known bell pepper plant has ever had the same mutation, and the Aloha pepper plants themselves don’t seem to be able to pass on the mutation that gives them their unique coloration.
Aloha peppers result from a bell pepper breeding facility that just happened to produce this particular pepper randomly. Not a lot is known about the production or whether mutations were encouraged. Still, we know that the company immediately started looking into how they could create more Aloha peppers, figuring that the unique color would be a good selling point.
Unfortunately, because only the yellow part of the pepper produces seeds, you’ll only ever get yellow bell peppers when you plant them, not Aloha peppers.
Worse, the cultivar is patented. That means there aren’t any Aloha peppers being sold without the patent holder’s permission, which is another roadblock to getting your hands on an Aloha plant.
Are Aloha Peppers GMO?
We know what you’re thinking, a unique plant that can only be reproduced by cloning the original that’s been patented because of its rare and desirable characteristics? That sounds like it might be a GMO!
Well, in this case, it’s not a GMO.
While there’s nothing inherently wrong with GMO plants and crops, it’s understandable that some people want to avoid them, both in their food and in their gardens. However, even though the greenhouse that produced the Aloha pepper was looking into different varieties of pepper and pepper mutations, the Aloha isn’t the product of a GMO process.
No genes were spliced or added to the original plant to make this pepper. They didn’t even know that there would be anything different about the first Aloha pepper until it developed fruit with an unusual color pattern.
If no one had noticed the difference, this plant might never have been cloned, and there would only ever have been the harvest from the original plant. Sure, the mutation may have re-emerged somewhere down the line if bell pepper plants were planted together and allowed to keep growing for several generations, but there’s no guarantee.
What Do Aloha Peppers Taste Like?
We’ve tried Aloha peppers for ourselves and are pleased to announce that they taste like bell peppers.
Now, don’t be too disappointed. The Aloha pepper tastes like other bell peppers but not precisely like any other type. They taste exactly like what they are, a combination of red and yellow peppers, and the balance of tastes changes a little between each bite.
It’s subtle and probably wouldn’t be very noticeable if you cooked the pepper before eating it, but it can add some nice variety when eating your peppers raw or as part of a salad.
What Color Bell Pepper Is Healthiest?
All bell peppers are pretty good for the people who can eat them. They’re full of nutrients and minerals that everyone needs, have lots of water which helps make them more hydrating, and are one of the sweeter vegetables, making them more appealing to people who prefer fruits, grains, or meat to vegetables.
That said, red bell peppers have slightly higher levels of critical nutrients, which also contribute to their color, leading some people to conclude that red peppers are the healthiest.
The truth is, the healthiest pepper is the one you’ll eat! So, whether your favorite bell pepper is red, green, yellow, or Aloha, it is good to have them in your diet.
Where Are Aloha Peppers Grown?
Originally from the Netherlands, Aloha peppers are patented by two companies, and those companies are the only providers of the plants.
That said, that doesn’t mean that all Aloha peppers come from the Netherlands. They might be grown in greenhouses near you if a local farmer bought some for this year’s crop! The trick is that Aloha peppers can only be grown by approved farmers who pay for the plants, so they can technically be grown anywhere, but the size of the crop is still limited.
Are Aloha Peppers Sweet?
Yes! Like most other bell peppers, Aloha peppers are considered a sweet pepper. They might not taste as sweet as your favorite candy or even an apple or strawberry, but they are more sweet and savory than spicy.
Slightly less sweet than red bell peppers but sweeter than green bell peppers, Aloha peppers seem to have a similar taste profile to both red and yellow bell peppers but are distinctive enough to taste a little different from either.
Hi there, my name is Allie and welcome to my blog; GareningWithAllie!
Much of what you see written here is just our personal experiences with gardening. Along with the content I write here, there is also a unique collection of gardening topics covered by some of our close friends. I hope you find everything you read here to be helpful, informative, and something that can make your gardening journey the most lovely experience ever! With that said, Happy Gardening!