Eggplants are perennial plants that belong to the Nightshade family and it has been a popular plant that has been an important part of the human diet for thousands of years.
These plants are edible flowering plants which are also known as aubergine or brinjal and the cultivation of this plant can be traced back to 600 BC in the southern and eastern parts of Asia.
The eggplant originates from China and there are about 770 varieties of this plant found all around the world and they thrive well in the tropical and sub-tropical regions of the world.
Eggplants, Solanum melongena, is a fruit-producing plant and the fruits which develop from this plant usually have a dark-purple fleshy color and they vary in their size and shape have the ability to reach a length of 1.2 to 12 inches.
Eggplants can come in a variety of colors and they can have varying colors which include green, lavender, white, and red and the plant from which they grow can reach a height of 16 to 57 inches.
Eggplants are interesting plants to grow at home; they are used in the production of a number of foods consumed by people in different cultures and traditions around the world and they are also used as ornamental plants for beautifying homes.
Eggplants are plants that mature quite early and they are very easy and simple to grow if you have the right and proper guide on what to do at the right time – these plants mature within 60 days of planting and they produce tasty fruits.
Eggplants are very rich in vitamins C, K and others belonging to the B group, fibers, and minerals such as phosphorus, copper, and magnesium.
This plant has an egg-like shape and it is a popular plant in Italy and it is also known as “crazy apple” in this region of the world all because of a popular belief that diets rich in this plant can cause madness.
However, eggplants are awesome plants to grow because of their nutritional benefits and they are plants that every gardener should have in their garden. Are you willing to learn more about this plant?
In this article, we will take you through the various steps involved in growing eggplants so you should read further to learn more about them. Have an awesome learning experience!
Table of Contents
- 1 When is the right time to plant Eggplants?
- 2 How to grow Eggplants at home
- 2.1 Start the eggplant seeds indoors 6 – 9 weeks before last frost date:
- 2.2 Soak the seeds overnight:
- 2.3 Get 72 or 128-cell trays:
- 2.4 Fill trays with growing medium:
- 2.5 Plant the seeds:
- 2.6 Allow to germinate:
- 2.7 Transplant the seedlings when they are 3-inches high:
- 2.8 Select a planting site:
- 2.9 Soil preparation:
- 2.10 Plant the seedlings:
- 2.11 Practice mulching:
- 2.12 Stake the seedlings:
- 2.13 Water thoroughly:
- 2.14 Remove flea beetles present on the plant’s leaves:
- 3 Conclusion
When is the right time to plant Eggplants?
Think about it; what is the essence of knowing how to grow a plant without having a good idea of the right and most convenient time to grow them.
Eggplants grow well under a temperature range of 70 and 90 degrees Fahrenheit and this plant can best be grown in spring and summer seasons – this is the best time to achieve or experience such a temperature change.
Therefore, as a guideline, it is important to start planting your eggplants indoors from seed 8 to 9 weeks before the last spring frost date.
Planting during this period will make it easy for the eggplant to be able to prevent the threat posed by the last frost. However, the right time to plant your eggplant seedling outdoor is after the last threat of frost i.e. last frost date has passed.
How to grow Eggplants at home
Eggplants are very easy plants to grow and propagate and they are quite a hearty, delicious plant that can be easily grown with just a few, simple, convenient steps.
Growing eggplants is very easy and quite fascinating and with the nature of it – you can carefully grow it at home without having to worry about too many excesses.
In this section of the article, we will take you through the steps involved in growing eggplants so you should read further to learn more about them. Below are the steps involved in growing eggplants:
Start the eggplant seeds indoors 6 – 9 weeks before last frost date:
Your plant needs to be prevented from the harshness of the frost period so you should start them ahead indoors. This will help to ensure that the plant grows naturally and thrives well without getting exposed to the cold weather in any way. Some of the ways involved in starting eggplants indoors include:
Soak the seeds overnight:
Before the day of planting indoors, it is important that you soak the seeds overnight to ensure their growth and development. You should place seeds in a small container and pour water in a bowl and allow sitting overnight.
Get 72 or 128-cell trays:
Eggplant seeds grow best in trays that have 72 and 128 cells that have large spaces that can help to accommodate the growth of the plant’s root. Avoid purchasing a tray that has small cell sizes that may hinder the efficient growth of the plant. You can purchase them at any garden center.
Fill trays with growing medium:
Choose a growing medium that is fine and loose to get the best results possible. This plant will also perform well in soil-less medium and you should fill each cell hole to about three-quarters of the depth of the hole. Materials such as vermiculite, coconut husk, compost, and perlite are awesome for starting your plant.
Plant the seeds:
After properly filling the seed trays, the next thing to do is plant the seeds to a depth of ¼-inches using your finger. You should sow a seed in once cell and carefully cover the seeds very well. The planted seeds should be properly watered and planting should be done at the center of each plant cell to ensure even spread of the root.
Allow to germinate:
Generally, the germination of eggplants occurs between 5 and 14 days depending on the variety of the plant and the temperature at which they are kept. Once the plant begins to germinate, it is recommended to keep the plant at a temperature of 65 degrees Fahrenheit so as to enhance the development of these plants. Make sure that this temperature is maintained during the germination period.
Transplant the seedlings when they are 3-inches high:
After the seedlings have reached a height of 3-inches, it is important to grow the plants in a larger space that will ensure the growth of the root.
Each seedling should be given a single garden pot and the pots should be filled with the same growing medium used in the tray.
After filing the pot, make a hole at the center of the nursery pot and carefully remove the seedling with the bulk of soil and place it in the hole.
Properly cover the hole made at the center of the nursery pot and water it well. This is important because it usually heats up more quickly compared to the soil and it should be kept indoors until the temperature is at least 70 degrees Fahrenheit outside.
Select a planting site:
Once the last spring frost has passed, transplanting of the plant outdoor is highly recommended.
Since eggplants require very high temperatures to thrive well, it is important to choose a spot that receives at least 6 hours of sunlight daily; however, in places where this seems impossible, plant at a spot that gets partial shade.
The site you choose should also be well-draining and very fertile so as to enhance the proper growth and development of the plant.
Prepare a seedbed and check the pH level, nutrient availability, and water retention ability of the soil. If the soil is poor and needs any kind of amendment this should be done before planting takes place.
Add organic soil amendments such as compost and aged manure to the soil and carefully mix before planting takes place.
Plant the seedlings:
Eggplants need a very spacious place to grow well and thrive. Make holes at the planting site with a spacing of 24-inches between them and also ensure that the hole is deeper than the depth of the root. You should carefully place the seedlings in the hole and fill the space around the plant’s root with soil.
Make sure that they are well spaced to ensure better productivity. Properly water the plant base after planting has been done to ensure germination.
After planting, you should mulch the plant base by surrounding the root region with mulching materials such as grass clippings and compost. This will help to prevent the growth of weeds and also help to prevent the loss of soil moisture.
Keeping weeds at the barest minimum is one of the ways to ensure that the eggplant survives well so you should do this as soon as the plant is well-established in the growing site.
Stake the seedlings:
After mulching, you should carefully stake the plant to provide support for them. The stakes should be placed at a distance of 1 – 2 inches to the base of the plant and they will provide support for your plants to lean as they grow larger. This will ensure that the plant does not cause any disturbance for other plants as it grows larger.
Once the plant is sown, watering should be carried once a week and the degree of watering should be very intensive.
Make sure that enough water is provided to the plant once a week as this will encourage the durability and long-lasting nature of the plant.
Remove flea beetles present on the plant’s leaves:
If you notice the presence of beetles (one of the most popular pests of the plant) on your plant leaves, you should remove them as early as possible so as to avoid causing damages to the plant. Prevent any form of pest or disease that can be present on your eggplant as soon as they are noticed.
Growing eggplant is very easy to carry out and by following the above-mentioned steps you can be assured of the best productivity possible.
Have a great time growing your eggplant and enjoy the produce with the heart of fulfillment. Enjoy gardening!
Thank you for taking the time to read this article !