The local hydro dealer has a thickly stalked pepper plant in a grow hut display model which started a conversation.
I noticed it was a pepper plant, but had never seen these "berries. It turns out they are Tepin pepper. Google it to see photos if you have never seen them. This bush has a 1 inch stalk and is literally covered in berries and flowers.
In response to Applestars question on "perennial peppers", the hydro guy said this was the 3rd year of owning the Tepin and the fruiting cycle was very interesting. They do not force flowering, it occurs naturally without any changes to lighting, humidity, or temp. It runs a full cycle of flower, flower and fruit, and then just fruit. It will immediately flower once the fruit are all dropped in the current cycle.
He offered and I tried a couple. WOW! Instant flavor and heat. The flavor is exceptional and not over "burned" as are some habs and bonnets. The interesting part is the heat dissipates within about a minute to a mellow spice.
I fell in love. We put a 1/4 in a large batch of chili last night and it really added some great flavor. The pick up in heat was great too.
I am going to save the remainder for seed and can see at least one of these plants becoming a member of the family.
Edit: Couple notes since I posted this thread. Many google searches have tag lines such as "worlds hottest" or something of that nature. This is not true, but an eye catcher only. The heat is no where near as fierce as a hab and absolutely no comparison with a julokia. I would rate the heat with a seranno or very hot jalapeno, but nothing close to bonnets / habs.
On the lifespan............."For gardeners, the TepÃƒÂn is a small perennial bush that can live for several years, needing some warmth year-round. In cold climates they can be grown in a container and brought indoors in the winter, and then put outside when the nights are above 50Ã‚Â°F. in spring. TepÃƒÂn is a desert plant, so sprouting seeds need a little help. " TepÃƒÂn peppers have to be tricked into thinking they're in the desert," she says"