World’s Hottest Chilli Variety on display at Braehead Flower Show this weekend. 

Braehead gardener Alasdair Forsyth is gearing up for this weekend’s Braehead Flower Show, where he’s in with a great chance of winning the “Hottest Chilli” category.  Alasdair has successfully grown a “Carolina Reaper”, officially the world’s hottest chilli.  Measured on the ‘Scoville Scale’, it is 300 times hotter than the jalapenos you would expect to find on a plate of nachos.


Alasdair says,

“This is a really intense chilli and you’d be crazy to eat it in one go.  Once finely chopped up, there’s enough chilli here to make dozens of really, really hot curries.”

The Carolina Reaper chilli is recognised by the Guinness Book of Records as the hottest ever, beating other plants with names as colourful as the chillies they grow, including the “Trinidad Scorpion”, the “Scotch Bonnet” and the “Naga Viper”. Alasdair has been growing chillies for over 20 years and added,

“Every year I try to cultivate a good few varieties because I love the different colours and different plants.  The Carolina Reaper is a hard one to grow because the plant can get to a metre tall and you’ll only get one or two chillies.  But if you grow something like a Demon Red, you’ll get lots of little chillies on a plant you can keep at the kitchen window.   They make fantastic presents, as long as you remember to warn everybody to be careful!”

Alasdair is one of dozens of local growers hoping their creations ripen at just the right time for the annual event, this year on Sunday 27 August.  With over 100 different categories covering carrots, cauliflowers, courgettes and more, if you’ve got a potential prize-winner growing in your garden, organisers want to remind you that the event is open to all growers, not just those in Braehead.

Community Garden Chairperson, and Stirling East Councillor, Chris Kane, says,

“I thought the honeybees were the most dangerous things at Braehead Community Garden, but now I’m not so sure! Our first Flower Show was a great success, but it is obvious listening to everybody that the competition has ratcheted up a notch or two for 2017.  This is a great community event and whether you are a competitor or a spectator, I hope you’ll come and join us at Braehead on Sunday.   

As well as chillies, fruit, vegetables and flowers, the show also includes categories covering everything from crafts, photography and home baking.  You can download a full schedule here.   Or if you’d simply like to see the entries or visit the award winning two and a half acre Braehead Community Garden, the Flower show is open to the public from 1.30pm-4pm, with the presentation of prizes at 3.30pm.

Afton Court Play Park Revamp – Drop in event on Saturday 19th August 2017


Braehead Community Council are looking to develop the Afton Court Play Park in the near future and are currently gathering views on how best to use the space for both adults and children.  This information will all help to shape what the final plans look like and help us secure funding to realise our ambitions.

We’d love to hear what you and/or your children think.  We’re hosting a drop in event in the park (under a gazebo!) on Saturday 19th August between noon and 2pm – we’d love to see you there.

There is also a online survey you can fill in below.



Braehead Plant and Flower Show 2017

Braehead Community Garden has put a call out for growers and gardeners all over Stirling to compete in their second annual Flower and Vegetable Show on Sunday 27th August.  The event is open to the public – both to compete or to visit.

You can download a copy of the 2017 schedule, with details of all the categories, by clicking here.


There are 100 categories to enter, spread across seven sections:  Vegetables, Flowers, Fruit, Homemade and Childrens’, photography and chillies.  The produce has to be home grown, home cooked or home made, but can be from the raised beds in the community garden or the back gardens of homes all over the district.

New for 2017 is the “hottest chilli pepper” category.   Last year one of the hottest chillies on the planet, the Carolina Reaper, was cultivated in the garden’s polytunnels.  This particular chilli is hotter than the pepper spray used by police all over the world.

Also new for 2017 is the “photography section”, with categories including “Life in a Garden” and “A Stirling Scene”.

Community Garden Chairman and local Councillor Chris Kane says,

“If you’ve got a cabbage that you’re particularly proud of, or indeed think your scones are better than anybody else’s, we want to see you enter our show on 27th August.  This event captured the local imagination and competitive spirit last year and was great fun.   This is a fantastic opportunity for everybody to come together and show the results of their summer labours in gardens all over Stirling.”

Braehead Community Garden Flower Show prizewinners at the 2016 show
Braehead Community Garden Flower Show prizewinners with Stirling Council Provost (Aug 2016)

Braehead’s Flower and Plant Show Organiser Rosa Oswald says,

“Last year’s show was a big hit with both members and the public and this year’s event will be bigger and better.  This year we’ve a whopping 100 categories across seven sections, ranging from photography to cakes.  I grew up in Buchlyvie and regularly entered the Kippen Flower Show as a child;  it’s great to see the spirit of these village shows growing in Braehead.  If you enjoy either gardening, baking, crafts or photography, there’s a category for you at the Braehead Flower and Vegetable Show.”


Last year's overall winner Elaine Lewis & daughter Cora
Last year’s overall winner Elaine Lewis & daughter Cora

Entries will be accepted on Sunday 27th August in the morning from 8.30am until 10am, judging takes place until 1.30pm, with the show open to the public from 1.30pm until 4pm.  Provost Christine Simpson will present the prizes to the winning growers at 3pm.

Braehead Community Garden is run by members and was built thanks to a Big Lottery award in 2015.