Germination temperature: 60 F to 95 F
- Germinates best between 80 F and 90 F.
Days to emergence: 7 to 10
- At 85 F.
Seed can be saved 4 years.
Start inside about 6 weeks before last frost date (or about 8 weeks
before expected transplanting). Plant 1/4 inch deep in flats or
cell-type containers. Keep soil warm (about 80 F to 90 F if possible)
until emergence. Eggplant will not germinate in cool soil.
Harden off plants carefully before transplanting by reducing temperature and water.
until weather has settled, all chance of frost has passed and soil is
in the 60s F before transplanting, perhaps 2 to 3 weeks after the
average last frost date. Cool conditions can weaken plants. Frost will
Consider using raised beds or black plastic mulch to
warm soil and speed early-season growth. If using organic mulches to
help retain moisture, do not apply until the soil has warmed.
Set transplants 18 to 24 inches apart in rows 30 to 36 inches apart.
Use row covers to protect plants from pests.
If season is cool, fruit set may be inconsistent. Plants with heavy fruit set benefit from staking.
are heavy feeders, but avoid high-nitrogen fertilizers. They may
encourage lush foliage growth at the expense of fruit.
blossoms 2 to 4 weeks before first expected frost so that plants
channel energy into ripening existing fruit, not producing new ones.
help reduce disease, do not plant eggplants or other tomato-family
crops in the same location more than once every three or four years.
Aphids - A hard stream of water can be used to remove aphids from
plants. Wash off with water occasionally as needed early in the day.
Check for evidence of natural enemies such as gray-brown or bloated
parasitized aphids and the presence of alligator-like larvae of lady
beetles and lacewings.
beetles - Use row covers to help protect plants from early damage. Put
in place at planting and remove before temperatures get too hot or
plants start to flower.
Colorado potato beetles - Handpick beetles, larvae and eggs.
Cutworms - Use cardboard collars around transplants it cutworms are a problem.