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For details on growing many other vegetables and fruits, visit our Crop at a Glance collection page. Growing eggplant is easy where summers are long and warm. Where summers are short, varieties that mature quickly and produce medium to small fruits can easily be grown in containers. If you grow peppers, you can grow eggplant. The fruits may be purplish-black, white or all shades in between — some varieties even bear orange or green fruits. Oval to oblong eggplants produce the large, oval-shaped, purplish-black eggplants seen in most supermarkets.
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Are you "itching" to start your vegetable garden? One way to jump-start the growing season is to start seedlings indoors. There are many advantages to starting your seeds indoors in addition to allowing anxious gardeners to "get their fingers dirty. Many of us wait until the cell packs of tomatoes and peppers are available at the retailer. Starting your own seed allows you to raise the varieties you want and not rely on what the retailers have available.
To start your seeds indoors, all you need is a container and tray, potting mix, and labels. The container should have drainage holes and could be anything including egg cartons, cell packs saved from last spring, or special seed starting kits you purchase. The tray or flat will collect excess water coming through the drainage hole.
Now start filling the container. Seeds usually germinate best in a light mix developed especially for starting seed. Germinating mix is readily available at most stores. Fill the containers full and then water thoroughly with a light mist. Most germinating mixes are hard to get wet, so take your time, and keep checking with your finger to be sure the mixture wets thoroughly. Next, plant the seed and label them carefully.
Don't worry about planting too closely, because you will thin them later. Check the seed packet to see whether you should cover the seeds or not. Some seeds need light to germinate and should not be covered. Others should be covered with a light dusting of additional germinating mix. Use a mister to lightly water the covered tops.
Keep the germinating mix moist, but be careful not to overwater. You might want to enclose the whole container in plastic or use a clear plastic cover to help create a more humid, greenhouse-like environment. A clear plastic deli container makes a great mini-greenhouse. Once the seeds start to sprout, remove that cover. Time seedlings so they will be ready to plant outside after the last frost-free date. Here is a seed-starting timetable to help you determine when to start your seedlings.
Seed packets usually contain this information too. The average date of the last spring frost in central Illinois is AprilThis means there is a 50 percent or less chance of frost on this date. The actual frost-free date for central Illinois is MaySo to plant tomatoes on May 15, you'll need to start tomato seeds indoors between March 20 and April 3. Good luck and have fun jump-starting your garden. Join Extension Horticulture Educator Kim Ellson during her upcoming Four Seasons Gardening webinar as she discusses key elements for successful seeding this spring.
Strengthen your skillset and learn about germination triggers, breaking dormancy, scheduling, seeding methods, damping off, and hardening. Seed Starting is presented live on January 31 at p. All sessions are available for live home viewing. Contact your local Extension office to inquire about attending the webinar at the Extension office.
Following the session, a taped version is available on YouTube. Rhonda Ferree began her career with Illinois Extension inThroughout her career she served as Illinois Extension specialist in pesticide safety education, Fulton County Extension horticulture and crops educator, Fulton County Extension director, West Central Illinois Extension associate regional director in Springfield. She retired in while serving as horticulture educator for the Fulton-Mason-Peoria-Tazewell Unit.
ILRiverHort is a blog that helps people connect to nature and grow. Skip to main content. Starting Seeds Indoors. January 20,Written by Rhonda Ferree, retired horticulture educator Are you "itching" to start your vegetable garden?
Starting seeds indoors is about as much fun as a food gardener can have in late winter! The idea is to grow baby plants a. Just about any crop can be started inside and transplanted outside. With a small investment and a bit of space, you can grow hundreds of healthy transplants. All of the supplies you need can be found at home reused food containers for starting seeds or purchased locally from hardware stores, garden centers, and big box stores. The proper time to sow seeds for transplants depends on when plants may safely be moved out-of-doors in your area. A common mistake is to sow seeds too early and then attempt to hold the seedlings back under poor light or improper temperature ranges.
Starting your garden with budget-friendly seeds, with instructions and tips, on your solution for Florida-Friendly gardening from the.
Eggplant originated in India and is a member of the nightshade family, which includes potato and tomato. While neither has been proved, eggplant is known to be very nutritious. It is a great source of fiber and has a fair amount of iron, potassium and protein. Eggplant prefers well-drained, fertile, sandy loam soils with a pH between 5. Remove all weeds and till the soil to loosen it to a depth of 6 to 10 inches. The higher the organic matter content of the soil the better, so incorporate a 3- to 4-inch layer of compost if possible. Suggested varieties for Texas include:. Although eggplant can be seeded directly into the garden, it is always better for the beginning gardener to use transplants. Grow the seeds indoors.
HGTV shares how to grow eggplant, including tips on planting eggplant, choosing the right variety for your garden and harvesting this delicious, heat-loving crop. Grow eggplant in a spot that gets at least 6 hours of direct sunlight and you'll be rewarded with glossy fruit that's delicious baked, fried and even pickled. There are many varieties of eggplant to choose from. Fruit can appear speckled or striped and come in hues from the deepest purple to pure white.
Eggplants are a Mediterranean favourite, widely used in all sorts of cuisine, these wonderful vegetables are mostly enjoyed roasted, grilled or pickled. From the traditional dark purple types through to creamy-white, yellow, lavender, pink and green varieties.
Eggplant can be a beautiful addition to your garden. Eggplant enjoy a long growing season, but you can extend your season by starting plants indoors. It is best to sow eggplant indoors weeks before transplanting outside. Start eggplant inside weeks before the last frost. Transplant outside weeks after the last frost into a warm and sunny location. Eggplant can suffer damage from aphids, cucumber beetles, flea beetles, anthracnose, and Tobacco Mosaic Virus.
Coaxing new life out of a seed is one of the highlights of the year for gardeners, right up there with harvesting perfectly ripe vegetables at least in my opinion. Starting seeds indoors gives your vegetables, herbs, and flowers a head start so they can grow larger and have better and longer harvests or flowering periods. As everyone knows, a little tending is good for the soul! You can jump straight to the section How to Start Seeds Indoors in 4 Easy Steps and come back to the details another time. I mean, they are pretty good details. Just saying.
Starting seeds indoors gives a head start on the gardening season and opens the door to growing endless varieties. And, it is a fun way to kick off the.
You have your seed packets, you have your seed starting essentials, and you have a garden plan — sounds like you are ready to plant and grow a garden! But are you sure you know which seeds can go directly into your garden soil, and which will do better if you start them indoors? When preparing to plant your veggie seeds, there are some general guidelines to follow — since some do better being sown directly into your garden while others need the more protected conditions that sowing indoors provides. We link to vendors to help you find relevant products.
Skip to content. Starting seeds indoors gives a head start on the gardening season and opens the door to growing endless varieties. And, it is a fun way to kick off the gardening season. It varies according to the plant and the date of the last frost in your area. In many areas of Massachusetts, the last frost date is usually around May 15th.
Eggplants Solanum melongena , also known as aubergines, are a member of the Nightshade Solanaceae family to which tomatoes, potatoes and peppers also belong. They are not a naturally occurring species but were possibly cultivated in India or China in the distant past.
Eggplant is a perennial tropical vegetable plant native to South and East Asia namely, China and India and a member of the tomato family. The plant loves heat and full sun and requires evenly moist soil in its native environment to thrive and fruit heavily. These are medium-sized bushes, and nowadays, much more dwarf and compact cultivars are available for limited space gardeners. Similar to the other cousins of the nightshade family, e. Growing eggplants in pots is possible in two ways— Either start them using seeds or buy the seedlings from a nearby nursery or garden center.
Eggplants are a warm season crop. Like tomatoes they need and love heat. If you have a greenhouse then save some space in there for your eggplants.