Friday, August 5, 2011

Early August Eggplants

It's been a cool summer here in the Pacific Northwest. We are in our second week of consistently warm days (and by warm it's usually in the low 80's). I'm loving the weather. Not too hot, not too cold, but just right. However, the evening temperatures are still in the low to mid 50's. Weird. We also have yet to see our first 90 degree day this summer

The eggplants are taking it all in stride. Although I harvested a small Konasu eggplant, it wasn't ready. I picked it off moreso so that the small plant could grow more. I looked back last year and my first Millionaire Eggplant was harvested on 8/16. I think I will pick a few small Ichiban eggplant this weekend because I can't wait to have some eggplant and they're setting lots of flowers.

Here's the 4 eggplant varieties I planted in my icky clay soil. They seem to be growing slow and steady. They all are putting out flowers now so soon I'll be able to taste each of them. From left to right: Listada de Gandia, Thai Long Green, Ichiban and Konasu.
Here are some Thai Long Green flowers. For a long time this plant just sat and looked exactly the same. I'm glad to report it's actually flowering now.
It seems the container eggplant are quickly catching up and then some. They've now overgrown the garden planted eggplant in size. Keep in mind too, that these plants were the runts of the litter (seeds all home sown). This is my only Tiger Eggplant. I thought this plant would never make it. It was the runtiest of all the eggplant I grew but somehow, someway, it managed to survive and thrive! Last year I didn't have good luck with this variety. It was planted in an area of the yard that had too much shade (and in the icky clay soil). I only got a few fruit from the plant so I decided to give this one another try. I can imagine the small round eggplant going into Thai curry. Yummy!
The flowers of the Tiger eggplant are pretty. They're a light purple and plentiful! The fruit itself are green with stripes. It's small and round.
These are the container thrivers. To the left are 2 Listada de Gandia plants and to the right are 2 Konasu plants. They're probably overcrowded but so far so good. Both varieties are flowering heavily.

Here's the fruit that I've noticed so far. These are the Ichiban that I'll probably harvest this weekend. Yum!

This little guy is a Konasu. They're small eggplant (grows to about the size of a hen's egg). They're good for stir-fry or traditional Japanese tempura. This one maybe ready next week.


Ben Czajkowski said...

I've loved my Ichiban eggplant, so far this year; I hope that you do, too. I'm growing that one and a Fairy Tale. Both are totally different in color, size, shape, and production. Amazes me that they're worlds apart.

~Holly~ said...

Ben: I grew 2 Millionaire Eggplant last year and they were super productive. I hope this little Ichiban lives up to it's reputation! I've always been partial to the Asian (mostly Japanese) eggplant varieties. I'm hoping the Listada surprises me!