Sunday, November 22, 2009

Eggplant

I purchased a Black Beauty eggplant months and months ago at a local nursery.  I’ve never grown eggplant before; so I thought I would give it a try.  I didn’t expect much success.  Now, I can’t get the danged thing to shut down.  Eggplant.  Eggplant.  Eggplant!!!

I share them with friends and co-workers.  Even if many don’t know how to use them, I hope they take them to incorporate into their Thanksgiving table.  Their color is really really rich.

Here’s a look at old Black Beauty.

DSC_1008_2332 Start with an unusually lovely blossom.

DSC_1010_2334 After pollination, a swollen fruit begins to form.  Even though the leaves are soft and cushy like sage, these spike require gloves at harvest time.

DSC_1011_2335 The swollen fruit continues to swell.  Those thorns don’t look so ominous now; but I still recommend gloves.

DSC_1012_2336 Some prefer the smaller fruit.  These beauties can hide in the shadows and really get overgrown similar to zucchini. 

DSC_1006_2330 Along with gloves, pruning shears are recommended because the stem is pretty tough.  This morning’s harvest is going with me to work tomorrow.

DSC_1608_1787 The only pests I noticed were grasshoppers.  (Remember Eileen - I lean - from this summer?)  They really, really enjoyed munching on the leaves.  Sometimes earwigs invade fruit left on the bush too long. 

DSC_1009_2333Today, a few ladybugs were helping me out.

If you enjoy eggplant, Black Beauty can be highly recommended for zones 8 & 9.

Note:  The eggplant was dug up on December 26.  I had fruit on it but after a few nights of freezing weather, they joined the plant in the green waste.  This is one sturdy plant.

2 comments:

T Opdycke said...

Hi Maybelline,

I found your blog by way of Chiott's Run. Congrats on winning the calender. My but those eggplants are gorgeous. Here in nw Ohio, we're long past eggplants, endive, and endless vegetables fresh from the garden. Nice capture of the little lady. It's such a pleasure to see your photos.

Redblur63 said...

Absolutely beautiful. I love eggplant, especially roasted. Here in the south, too many people make the mistake of battering and frying it, and then hate it for the rest of their lives. I have a recipe for a curried eggplant soup and a coca de recapte (Catalan roasted vegetable flatbread) that are simply divine. Happy gardening!