The case of the eggplants in my garden is less of an experiment and more a mix of impulse buys, slow to germinate seeds and an obsession with marbled eggplants. Last year I planted a single eggplant, later in the season, and only because tomato seedlings were hard to get and seemed to just keep dying in my garden anyway. The tag said it was a prolific fruiter which I figued would be good seeing as his new home was going to be a pot. Well he fruited and fruited and I posted often on harvest Monday about my eggplants. Now for most people eggplants are an annual, dying off when the Winter hits. I thought my eggplant would do the same, and he did slow down the production in the cold weather, but he never truly came to a stop. In the frosty weather some of the leaves turned brown and he looked a little ill yet still the eggplants came. This just meant that I never pulled him out. Maybe it was his sunny position by the window but come Spring I already have 5 little though slightly damaged eggplants on this amazing bush.
I have decided to leave him in until he expires of his own accord though he has been moved to a different position to make way for a different sun loving plant.
By keeping the old plant in that meant I didn't have the larger space I thought I might have for my new obsession, the fairy-tale eggplant. It is a mottled pale purple and white, so pretty, and apparently so tasty. I set off to the nursery to find one, and even after visiting three separate nurseries could not procure a single seedling. I ultimately settled for another normal eggplant, though he didn't get the luxury of a large pot. You can see the size difference between him and the apple tree pots in the photo below. Despite the cramped space he seems to be growing up nicely.
I did have some caspar white eggplant seeds and decided it best to sow those if I wanted anything other than a generic eggplant in the garden. So far they are either invisible, or lacking germination. They are the pots at the front just behind the tomatoes. They are the pots with a whole lotta nothing in them. Infact the only thing to germinate was the white squash, the thing I was least keen on! I'm not holding my breath that any will germinate, but fingers crossed anyway.
A bit despondant about the white eggplant failure a few weeks later I was out at the nursery again, and low and behold I stumbled upon the fabled fairy-tale eggplant! In my excitement I bought not one but two seedlings, and reaching home realised I had a similar dilemma to the zucchini issue I wrote about yesterday - not enough large pots. One of them ended up in a bigger rectangle pot which should work well, while the other ended up in a slightly smaller round pot pictued below. I wonder how these will do in the balcony garden.
Now all I have to do is get the white ones to germinate and I can have a multicoloured eggplant garden, complete with the granddaddy eggplant from last year.
Do you have any favourite eggplants? When I was at the garden shop the old fellow next to me (who certainly wasn't staff) told me his favourite eggplant. It was the long lebanese eggplant. I might try that one next year, but for this year I think the garden is full!
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