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Old April 12, 2013   #31
BucksCountyGirl
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I had a really rough time growing eggplant as well, until I started growing them in containers. I have grown the hybrid "Fairytale" for a few years now with very good success in 7 gallon containers. They just didn't like to be in the ground for me!
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Old April 15, 2013   #32
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I almost hate to tell you this, but for us, the Japanese variety Ichiban almost can't stop producing. We get 100+ from one plant, every time we grow it. We thought that was normal. We grow all our vegetables hydroponically, so that makes a difference.

This Spring, for the first time, we're trying some traditional pear-shaped types. We'll let you know how that turns out. Might be completely different results.
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Old April 15, 2013   #33
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I ended up composting so many eggplant last year because I simply didn't have time or energy to process it and we ate so much we couldn't stand any more. I only grew the Asian types. I never had any luck with the Italian style but I only had one growing in not such a great location. It produced a lot but not as well as the Asian ones.
Eggplants do better than anything for me. Even peppers don't do as well and peppers do really well here. I only wish I could get a 10th of the tomatoes! Maybe it's the heat.
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Old April 16, 2013   #34
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lakelady View Post
Is it too late to sow seeds now? I did my peppers in February, and Tomatoes in March (okay, I snuck a few more tomatoes in last week ).

My driveway is mostly shade unfortunately. The dock on the lake is good sun most of the day. My garden area is mostly sun, but quite full already (on paper that is).
It's better to start eggplant seeds earlier, but you might not be too late, as my plants are still fairly small, but will yield, and your season is probably quite a bit longer than ours.

I never had luck with Black Beauty -- warm season is just not long enough here, but the hybrid Dusky did well here when I could get it -- and now both Park and Burpee have early hybrids that are the same type and do well.

Park's Whopper Hybrid -- 62 day and Burpee Early Midnight -- 55 day.

(Remembering that DTM is useful for comparing varieties, but actual DTM varies)
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Old April 18, 2013   #35
lakelady
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Originally Posted by Urbanfarmer View Post
I almost hate to tell you this, but for us, the Japanese variety Ichiban almost can't stop producing. We get 100+ from one plant, every time we grow it. We thought that was normal. We grow all our vegetables hydroponically, so that makes a difference.

This Spring, for the first time, we're trying some traditional pear-shaped types. We'll let you know how that turns out. Might be completely different results.
HOLY you-know-what!!! Really? I just cannot believe it. Now that's a shocker, because we just don't get anything even remotely close to that here. lol

I'm sure part of it is great gardening, but it has to also be related to the amount of heat you guys get over there. Last year was a very hot dry summer for us, and I still had very little eggplant production from 4 different plants. Except India. But they were small and seedy and I didn't like them. Too bad, I thought the little ones would be good pickled.

I'm definately picking up an asian eggplant this year at the garden center. lol
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Old April 18, 2013   #36
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We were stunned as well. The picture shows one Ichiban several years ago that was toward the end of it's life. We removed most of the leaves for the picture. Granted, this was grown in a greenhouse and had about a 6 month production run (can't remember exactly). It set just about every flower, and the flowers didn't stop. It was always heavy with eggplant just like you see here. All the Ichibans we've grown were like this.

Last year we tried a generic Italian-type and didn't do well. Even if you do everything right, if the variety is flawed, well......you win some and you lose some.
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Old April 18, 2013   #37
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Originally Posted by Urbanfarmer View Post
We were stunned as well. The picture shows one Ichiban several years ago that was toward the end of it's life. We removed most of the leaves for the picture. Granted, this was grown in a greenhouse and had about a 6 month production run (can't remember exactly). It set just about every flower, and the flowers didn't stop. It was always heavy with eggplant just like you see here. All the Ichibans we've grown were like this.

Last year we tried a generic Italian-type and didn't do well. Even if you do everything right, if the variety is flawed, well......you win some and you lose some.
That thing looked just like mine last year.
They have always been heavy producers for me I just dont like them.

I like the fat grocery store eggplant like Black Beauty .

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Old April 18, 2013   #38
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I want a variety that I can use to make a baba ganoush I like. Mine always comes out slimy, like eggplant-flavored baby food. I think "classic f1" is what I have seedlings of this year.
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Old April 24, 2013   #39
Keger
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Notice the trend here, cooler climates not so good. The hotter climates the better.

I think thats just what EP likes. I have a buddy from India, he says the nastier hot and humid the better for EP.

OK
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Old April 24, 2013   #40
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Originally Posted by Cole_Robbie View Post
I want a variety that I can use to make a baba ganoush I like. Mine always comes out slimy, like eggplant-flavored baby food. I think "classic f1" is what I have seedlings of this year.
WOW someone else who loves baba ganoush! My fav! Love it!
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Old May 8, 2013   #41
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I've had good luck with Black Beauty, last year I had 27 on 6 plants at one point,
The trick is do not plant into cold soil, 60 degree soil ok, 70 or more even better,
if you plant too soon in cold soil you will shock the plants and they won't well.
warm soil,+ lots of sun = lots of eggplants. Picking when small also helps
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Old June 5, 2013   #42
loki
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Northern NJ may be a little north for perfect eggplant growing conditions. I live in a cool night, relatively short season area (though if you cover things the Falls can warm up again!). So I use black plastic mulch as well as agrofabric row covers to keep in the heat (I remove the covers in July). Getting the soil warm in Spring as well as keeping the nights warm are very important to eggplant (and some peppers and melons too). I get three times the growth when compared to none of either. With that said, your eggplant choices were probably too late and not that productive to begin with. I love Kamo (somewhat hard to get seeds), and Thai Long Green Hybrid. Both are early and excellent flavor. They are both Asian varieties. I grow many others too. You can keep non-hybrid varieties of eggplant seeds quite reliably as they are nearly 100 percent self-pollinating. I think the other suggested varieties will work well too.
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Old June 12, 2013   #43
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You don't say much about your growing conditions... I tried to grow eggplant for years and had very spotty results due to Verticillium Wilt. Some years the Vert. wasn't bad and I got a decent crop (mostly Black Beauty). Most years, the plants would load up and then the plants would wilt -- at most I'd get an eggplant or two!

Then I decided that I'd try a container -- just a couple of tubs about 30 gal. No self watering, just some drain holes in the bottom to prevent water logging. Two plants each. WOW! I really started getting eggplant. By then I'd moved to hybrids. I think that Neon and Nadia were among the first I tried.

A few years later, I moved to EarthBoxes, and my fortunes improved again! I use apx 12" square, 4 ft. tomato cages to support the plants and plant two per box. I tie the cages to prevent "blowover" in storms, and since I now have 11 Earthboxes, I made a stand for them to make it easier on my back. (As a bonus, by keeping the weeds and grass from contacting the plants, I reduce flea beetles greatly, but I still have to spray occasionally.)

Varieties... My experience is that with few exceptions, hybrids do *MUCH* better than OP's. Much greater difference than in tomatoes, IMO.

Neon -- the best, but no longer in production AFAIK,
Dancer -- it's successor, and nearly as good (Johnny's)
White Lightning -- excellent and early. (May no longer be available?)
White Star -- first time this year. Looks like a bigger plant than White Lightning.
Burpee's Early Midnight -- Earliest and most productive eggplant I've ever seen.
Nadia -- vigorous and supposedly somewhat resistant to Verticillium. (But that's not an issue in containers, anyway.) (Tomato Growers Supply)

We like the white and light purple eggplant. I'm convinced that they are milder than the dark purple varieties -- especially after the first few eggplants are harvested.

Photo shows my stand, cages, and lashing of the cages. Early Midnight (left); White Lightning (right). Dancer just visible in the rear on the right.

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Quote:
Originally Posted by lakelady View Post
unless someone can tell me otherwise. Last year I grew 4 varieties, and none of them were really very productive. It seemed like an awful lot of work for about 4 fruits per plant. I had Rosa Bianca, and Indian variety, and 2 others that were not too memorable.

I've never done much eggplant growing, and the only one that seemed to really rock out was the little Prince from Renee's Seeds. (hybrid baby eggplant).

Does anyone have a good eggplant that is really productive?
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Last edited by Greatgardens; June 12, 2013 at 08:47 PM.
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Old June 24, 2013   #44
shelleybean
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I stated earlier in this thread I had five varieties of eggplant this year. I am happy to report they are all flowering and White Beauty has set some fruit. I'm going to have an eggplant forest because they're crammed between some tomatoes and the peppers. Wish I'd had more room to give to them. So far they are all very healthy and I look forward to a productive season with eggplant parmesan, fried eggplant, eggplant and sausage pasta, eggplant rollatini, eggplant gratin, etc.
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Old June 24, 2013   #45
Redbaron
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Well Shelly,
I won't have an eggplant forest. But so far my first eggplant ever to survive spring is still cooking along. When I took my morning walk through today I saw too many flowers to count! LOLZ

This may be my breakthrough year!
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