Eggplant, also known as brinjal and aubergine, is a plant that is native to the countries of India and Sri Lanka. Though botanically classified as a berry, eggplant is used as a vegetable, for cooking purposes. Eggplant is also very popular as a major ingredient in salads. It comes in a variety of colors, especially purple, green and white. The skin of the vegetable is thin and edible and can be consumed after cooking. Its flesh is smooth and has a number of seeds, which are bitter when eaten raw. In the following lines, we will provide you a number of tips for growing eggplant at home.
How to Grow Eggplant
- Paper Cutworm Collars
- Compost Makers
- Eggplant Seeds
- Fish Emulsions
- Floating Row Covers
- Garden Spades
- Garden Stakes
- Garden Trowels
- First of all, you need to select the right site for your eggplant. Select an area which receives a lot of sunshine and has soil that is fertile, well-drained and rich in organic matter.
- Eggplant needs lots of calcium to grow properly. So, it is advisable to add lime to the soil before planting.
- You can either buy seedlings from your local nursery or start seed indoors. In the latter case, start 8-10 weeks before the last expected frost.
- Prior to transplanting seedlings to the garden, whether homegrown or store-bought, it is necessary to harden them.
- Before you go about planting seedlings in the garden, make sure that all danger of frost has passed and the soil temperature is atleast 60 deg F.
- Now, add half-shovelful of compost or well-rotted manure to each hole, before you set in the plant.
- The distance between two seedlings should be 18 to 24 inches. In case of compact and dwarf varieties, the distance can be a little less also.
- After planting the seedlings, place a paper collar around each stem. This will help deter cutworms.
- In order to protect new plants from cold, wind and insects, it is advisable to add floating row covers or cloches.
- Three weeks after transplanting the seedlings, spray the plants with compost tea or fish emulsion.
- Use organic liquid fertilizer on the plants on a monthly basis.
- Eggplants need to be watered once a week and the water level should be about an inch.
- After the plants become established and the ground is warm, add mulch to retain moisture and deter weeds.
- About three weeks before the first expected frost, pinch back new blossoms.
- Pick eggplants as soon as they're big enough to use and till the time they lose their gloss.