This heirloom from Italy is a long-time favourite commonly used in Italian cuisine. The tall plants are very vigorous and produce stunning round to oval shaped fruits that are lavender-violet with touch of cream under the stem. The meaty eggplants grow to 4-5 inches long, are slightly ribbed and have a mild, delicate flavour and tender flesh. Grows really well in containers and makes an eye-catching edible ornamental addition to any garden.
Eggplant is a warm weather crop of the nightshade family. These plants will bear delicious and beautifully coloured fruits when given attention and an abundance of heat and sun.
Start seeds indoors 6-8 weeks before the last frost. Use flats and plant 4 seeds per 2 cm, 1 cm deep. Germination will not occur in cool soil. Keep temperatures from 27-32°C until seeds sprout and then maintain at least 21°C for optimal growth.
When true leaves appear, thin to 5-8 cm apart or transplant into pots. Harden off gently, cold weather may weaken the young plants. The ideal daytime temperature is 27-32 degrees. At night, the temperature shouldn’t drop below 10°C, or it may compromise production.
Grow your eggplant in the sunniest possible site. Soil should be well drained, an addition of compost in the spring will improve fertility. Transplant when the danger of frost has passed and temperature is consistently warm. In the garden, plant seedlings 45 cm apart, in rows 75-90 cm apart.
Water well and apply mulch after transplanting. Stake plants as they grow and develop heavy fruit. Keep soil evenly moist, especially during flowering and fruiting. Fertilizer should be applied a couple times throughout this phase.
Expect at least 100 days until maturity when starting from seed. It’s a long season, but eggplant should be abundant by this time. Using a pair of hand pruners, remove fruit by cutting the stem close to the main stalk. Be wary of the spines. Continually harvest small eggplants to promote production. Use care when harvesting, the skin and flesh bruise easily when ripe.
- Eggplants have been cultivated in Asia since prehistory, where they continue to grow wild today. Eggplants were grown throughout the Mediterranean area since the middle ages.
- Good at absorbing cooking fats and sauces, eggplants are an excellent meat substitute in vegan and vegetarian cuisines.
- Eggplants can be pruned and staked like tomato plants.
- Eggplant seeds will remain viable for 3 years if stored in a cool, dark place, ideally between 4 and 10⁰C. After that, the germination rate may start to go down.
OUR SEED GUARANTEE
You know that a lush, fruitful garden needs good soil, frequent watering, and sunlight to grow, but it’s the seeds that really make the harvest.
Picked and bagged for 2024 the vast majority of our seeds have germination rates of over 85%. The seeds are all-natural, non-GMO, non-hybrid, untreated, and open-pollinated for seed saving.
We have put a lot of thoughts into the design and packaging of our seed packets. Our seeds are all carefully packed in food grade kraft paper/aluminium zipper lock bags, and then are shipped in eco-friendly padded mailers.
We heat-seal each of our seed packet for even more protection from moisture, odour and light, allowing you to store your seeds for up to 3x longer than paper or plastic. Plant them all, germinate some indoors, save some for next season - it’s up to you!