This is the last of the spring crops to plant. Eggplants grow best when temperatures are settled and nights are in the sixties with afternoons as high as 95°F. They are so sensitive to cold that temperatures in the 40s are likely to set back plant growth and may permanently retard fruit production. A minimum of 4 hours of direct sun is necessary. pH range 5.5 to 6.8. Space on 3-foot centers. Staking may be necessary. Ree-may row covers are helpful to warm plants and protect against insects. Flea beetles which eat tiny holes in eggplant leaves can be controlled with organic sprays such as pyrethrum and rotenone. Plants are available beginning in late April.
Eggplant.'Black Beauty'. 80 days. Heirloom. Large, glossy fruit. Traditional shape.
Eggplant.'Fairy Tale'. 50 days. Elongated lavender colored fruit with white stripes grows in clusters of three to five. Best when picked when 4 inches long by 1 3/4 inches wide and while the skin is still shiny. Dwarf plants are good for containers. 2005 AAS winner.
Eggplant.'Fengyuan Purple'. 65 days. Asian type. Foot-long purple fruit. Thin skin makes pealing unnecessary. Non-bitter flesh.
Eggplant.'Italian Pink Bicolor'. 75 days. Round, 8 inch fruit matures rosy pink with faint streaks of cream.
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Eggplant.'Kermit'. 60 days. Compact, plant produces lots of small, round green and white fruits.
Eggplant.'Little Fingers'. 68 days. Unique, small, slim fruits grow in clusters of 3 or more. Ripens dark purple and can be picked when about 2 inches long, although they are still tasty, mild, and sweet when full sized (4 to 6 inches) Great pickled, grilled, or stir fried.
Eggplant.'Ophelia'. 55 Days. Mini oval fruits reach only 2 ounces Perfect for single seving. Best taste when fruits are harvested young. Plants are bushy but not quite as tall as regular eggplant.
Eggplant.'Orient Express'. 58 days. Attractive, slender 8-10 inch glossy black fruits in the long Oriental style. Tender, delicately flavored, and quick cooking.
Eggplant.'Ping Tung Long'. 65 days. Slender, 12 inch long, violet-purple eggplant reaches with excellent mild flavor and tender white flesh. Good producer, even in summer heat and humidity.
Eggplant.'Thai Green'. 75 days. If you've been looking for an eggplant to use in Thai cuisine, you must grow 'Thai Green'. The 12 inch long, slender, light-green fruit has skin so tender that peeling is not necessary. The white fleshed interior is also tender with a mild pleasant flavor.
Eggplant.'Turkish Orange'. 85-90 days. Unique, brilliant orange fruits are great for stuffing. Sweet and fragrant when freshly cut. The tennis ball sized fruits are best eaten when slightly orange with green striping. Once fruits turn red the skins will be bitter. Vigorous bush bears 15-25 fruits.