Tuesday, 7 September 2021

Egg Plants Need A Good Home To Grow In

 EggPlants are like many other plants.  Big bold and beautiful. Depending on your garden conditions and temperature the Eggplant may last all year around. Just remember though that egg plants are a heat loving plants.

But note that the Egg plant will last one season.  Then it's time to move into the compost cycle.

The growing cycle to harvest the eggplant is roughly 65 to 80 days after you have transplanted them.  This depends though on the variety as some may be only 50 days length.  Or 100 to 120 days from seed.

Depending where you are the harvest season is tipped to be between January to May. Victoria Australia

In amongst the thriving tomatoes a very neglected Eggplant was repotted.  Brought very cheaply from Bunnings as it was in the throw out ... buy if you risk it bin.

One week in a bathtub with an refilled amount each day this little plant finally said "Hi ya, I've decided to live'.

Opps.  Now what does one do with an egg plant. Research it in the gardening books, online, and ask people of course and here's a synopsis of what has happened with that research.

  • Egg plants are like the tomatoes.
    • Okay, have a bunch of tomatoes so will plant it there.
      • Wrong move as they should not be planted together.
        • Oops the original egg plant must have been stunted. It's now thriving having no tomatoes' around it. 
    • Don't plant where tomatoes have been in the last two years.
      • Retrospectively= Oh Heck.

  •  Thrive in a fertile soil, rich in compost, and manured with a layer of straw.
    • Right, that neighbor's chock, guinea pig and rabbit manure has  a real great use.
      • note to self 1 chook pens top create.
  • They thrive were the soil drains freely.
    • Got that covered as if I overwater that area there is water running out into the gutters at the road side. 
    • Added advantage many years ago the soil heavy clay soil was replaced with 'dirt' from a coal mine.  In the last nine months all the garden beds have been pretty well filled up with 18 cm [ about 6 inches] of compost. Plus just got refilled a few weeks ago.
  • Between the compost and the egg plants stem is a space of an 1 thumb knuckle all round.
    • Should keep the collar rot and other nasties away from tender areas.
  • The height of the variety needs to be considered when transplanting occurs.
    • Burry tall eggplants stems vey deep.  Some may reach 1.8 meters (6 foot) tall. The egg plant stem will probably shoot new root growth from the nodes on the stem. 
    • A bush eggplant though will only grow to about 60 cm (24 inches)
  • Need to be staked.
    • Good solid wooden stakes driven into the ground 10 centimeters from the stem, roughly the palm width.
    • Luckily although on top of a hill there is a very tall wooden fence around this garden. On the other side of that are lillipilli trees.  Thus not in a wind tunnel.
  • The leaves have looked fine  with the original loan ranger Egg plant.
    • Due to drainage there is not much water that hangs around.
      • The flip side is during summer here it could get a bit dry.  Egg plants, being like tomatoes, need water for their fruit to grow properly.
  • The flowers need to stay on the plant long enough for the bees to do their pollination job.
    • Keep an eye on the watering levels. Eggplants need to receive at least 2.5 cm [1 inch] of water a week. as a gook soak other wise the growth promoted bring forward shallow rooting.
    • water the ground - not the plant.
      •  Invest in a long sprinkle hose. 
    • Be aware of the light.
      • Utilize reflectors when possible.
    • MMM fertilizing level. 
      • Keep an eye on the fertilizing by really compost breaking down. 
        • Check the mix and fix the mix again before use.
        • Eggplants grow best with a pH between 5.5 and 7.0.  The range is slightly acidic to normal .
        • to much nitrogen in the fertilizer bring forward large, leafy plants that fail to produce fruit.
    • The flowers need temperatures between 2 to 29.444 deg Celsius or 70 and 85 degrees Fahrenheit. 
      • Lower temperatures and the bees are hibernation.  That inhabits pollination and fruit-set
        • The flowers fall off once the temperature goes below 10 Deg Celsius [50 deg Fahrenheit]
  • Those extra suckers - snip or pinch these off when they are small as the plant then can focus it's energy on the actual fruit production.  That bring larger and pretty impressive eggplants.
  • Know what not to put in the compost bins.
    • Mildewed leaves [ ie ones with powdery mildew] These ones go out in the green waste bin.  Once at the council everything is sterilized well
  • A biggy here in Victoria where it's considered a Cool to cold area...
    • The Egg plant - like these plants Tomatoes, peppers, squash, potatoes or carrots] need at least six hours sunlight a day.
      • That said its  April and cool at night right now. The squash and pumpkins are still reproducing and growing.  There is hope.
      • Egg plants will slow down in winter as the temperature drops.  They may keep growing and flowering.  This uses energy though.  Consider the 'cut back and conserve' the plants energy method
      • There is an even bigger hop of Eggplant ... try the large potted garden method.  This way
        • Bag the pot and that allows water to be stored and used when the Eggplant needs a drink.
        • Companion plants such as Amaranth, beans, marigolds, peas, peppers, spinach and thyme are able to be either grown with or moved into position for all to benefit.
          • Keep fennel away from Eggplants.
  • Plant the seedling during October to December.
  • Companion plants are : Beans and Spinach.
All this said the brining of the plants inside is a possibility  but the plants like the wind and insect activity with which to pollinate

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