NGA Articles: Easy Eggplants

Easy Eggplants (cont)

By: Charlie Nardozzi with Peter Kopcinski

Easy Eggplants by Shape

Here we've categorized eggplants by fruit shape so that you can compare otherwise similar varieties. Choose a short-season type if diseases are a problem in your garden, and choose an open-pollinated type ("OP") if you intend to save your own seeds for subsequent seasons. Large oval or teardrop fruits grow 3 to 4 feet tall and produce an average of 8 to 10 fruits that are best harvested when about 6 inches long. Cylindrical and long, thin shapes grow 2 to 3 feet tall and produce about 15 fruits per plant. Most fruits are 9 to 10 inches long and 1 to 2 inches wide. Small round shapes grow less than 2 feet tall so are well suited for growing in containers. Each plant produces an average of 20 to 25 fruits that are 1 to 3 inches long.

Variety - Days to harvest - Hybrid or OP - Skin color - Plant notes and fruit size

Large and Oval
Black Beauty - 75 - OP - Dark purple - Best in warmer areas of South and West. Imperial strain has larger fruits.

Black Bell - 60-65 - Hybrid - Dark purple - Good all-purpose, early, large-fruited variety.

Florida Market - 80- OP - Dark purple - Adapted to Deep South growing conditions; disease-resistant.

Ghostbuster - 80 - Hybrid - White turning yellow - Similar to but more productive than 'Casper'; harvest before skins turn yellow.

Purple Rain - 66 - Hybrid - Lavender with white streaks - Early and productive.

Rosa Bianca - 75 - OP - Lavender and white - Italian heirloom, very attractive fruits.

Violette di Firenze - 80 - OP - Violet - Unusual oval shape is ribbed like squash.

Cylindrical
Asian Bride - 70 - Hybrid - White with lavender streaks - Six-inch-long fruits have very tender skins.

Farmer's Long - 70 - Hybrid - Violet-pink - Thin skinned and very prolific.

Ichiban - 61 - Hybrid - Dark purple - Purple-tinged leaves. Good in hot climates.

Little Fingers - 60-68 - OP - Purple - Vigorous producer.

Neon - 65 - Hybrid - Deep pink - 6- by 2-inch fruits.

Ping Tung Long - 65 - OP - Lavender - Good disease and heat resistance.

Tango - 60 - Hybrid - White - 7- by 2-inch fruits.

Thai long - 80 - OP - Light green - Compact, 1- to 2-foot-tall plant withstands light frost.

Vittoria - 61 - Hybrid - Purple - 9- by 2 1/2-inch fruits; prolific.

Small and Round
Bambino - 45 - Hybrid - Dark purple - Especially prolific.

Easter egg - 65 - OP - White turning to yellow and ornamental - Compact plant; egg-shaped fruits are both edible.

Kermit - 60 - Hybrid - Green with white streaks - Thai specialty fruit.

Turkish orange - 85 - OP - Green turning to orange - Bushy 2- to 3-foot plant with good insect resistance; harvest fruit while green before skin turns orange and bitter.


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