Eggplant Stat Summary
Plant Spacing: 12-18" (304-457 mm)
Row Spacing: 24-36" (609-914 mm)
Planting Depth: 1/4" (6 mm)
Plants Per Person: 2
Soil Temperature: 75-80°F (24-27°C)
Days to Emergence: 5-15
Recommended Soil PH: 6.0-6.8
Seed Indoors: 9 weeks before transplanting
Earliest Outdoor Planting: After Last Frost
Can seed indoors
Due to cool weather intolerance, it is best to start plants indoors if your area has a shorter growing season. Sow indoors in a sterile seedling mix 6 to 8 weeks prior to the last frost. Make a 1/4 inch furrow in a nursery tray and sow seeds fairly thick; cover and keep soil moist but not too wet.
When plants sprout their 2nd set of leaves, move each eggplant into its own 3 inch pot. About 2 weeks before transplanting harden off the young plants by exposing them to lower temperatures and less water. Transplant eggplants into a sunny location in the garden by spacing them 12 to 18 inches apart in rows 2 to 3 feet apart in sandy loam soil with a pH of 6.0 to 6.8.
Mulch to keep soil lightly moist and control weeds. Stake plants to keep them from falling over when they become heavy with fruit. Do not allow the soil to dry out. Feed new seedlings every other watering cycle with Fish Emulsion or liquid seaweed. After they have grown 2 true leaves use a fertilizer high in phosphorus, repeat every two weeks until transplant time.
Harvesting and Storing Eggplant
Harvest eggplants after they develop a shiny colored skin; fruit should NOT spring back when your thumb is pushed against its side. Seeds in an over-ripe eggplant turn brown. Cut the stem with pruning shears and leave some stem on the fruit. Eggplant is best if eaten right after harvesting; they deteriorate rapidly after picked. However, fruit can be held 7 to 10 days at 45 to 55 degrees F and 90 to 95% humidity.
Eggplant Insect and Disease Information
Beetles can be controlled with the use of row covers or insecticides. To help reduce disease, do not plant eggplants or other tomato-family crops in the same location more than once every three or four years. Practice crop rotation with grass cover crops to reduce incidence of yellowing Verticillium Wilt.
Eggplant Yield Information
No yield information for Eggplant.
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