Read the previous part of the article: How to grow eggplant seedlings
Eggplant care is not very difficult, although some features of this culture need to be taken into account. You need to constantly loosen soil under the plants, weed and water them.
I loosen the soil with small rakes next to and between plants to provide oxygen to the soil.
When the eggplants grow and I can't turn around with the tool between them, I loosen the soil with a special fork, but you should always try to do it carefully so as not to damage the roots, even though they are already firmly rooted and grown. I always loosen the soil after rain that has compacted the soil.
I alternate watering plantings with top dressing. It's easier for me to do this, since there is manure from rabbits. I prepare a fertilizer solution from it: I take a bucket and fill it halfway with manure, and then add water to the top. Then I put this bucket in a very hot place in the garden for the whole day. After that, two scoops (400-500 grams) of this warm infusion are poured directly under the root of the plants. It is advisable not to get on the leaves that touch the eggplant fruit. Not because there will be some harm, just because of the pungent smell of the liquid.
If you do not have the opportunity to fertilize manure, then you can use the universal complex fertilizer "Sudarushka" for vegetable crops. I also use it sometimes. How to add it according to the instructions: 1 teaspoon of fertilizer (4 g) in a bucket of water (10 l). I also just water this solution under the root, and then you need to repeat this procedure again, after 10-15 days.
I never tie up eggplants, I just pick off the old yellowed leaves as soon as they appear.
As I was convinced eggplant react painfully to any careless attitude towards them. Slightly something is wrong, they immediately shed flowers or ovary. They are thermophilic plants, they love the sun, warm and sunny weather. But they do not like too much heat, they have a growth retardation from this. In the event that there was a strong heat during the day, I always water the plantings abundantly with cool water (about 25 ° C) in the evening.
After planting the seedlings, I begin to accustom the eggplants to such water. First, I pour 100 grams of water on the bush under the root, and then gradually increase this volume, and then I just throw the hose with water into the recess where I made holes and spill the plantings thoroughly.
This plant can shed flowers and ovary from a lack of sunlight, and from extreme heat, and from under-watering. The soil must be constantly loosened and watered abundantly and, of course, fertilized.
Eggplants also have pests. First of all, it is, of course, colorado beetles... They can completely destroy all eggplants — and seedlings, and flowers, and ovaries. If someone has them, I advise you to use the preparations "Aktara", "Ratibor", "Fozalon", but this is only until the fruits appear on the plants. And after that ash will do: Sprinkle it on top of the plants — 500 grams per square meter — and after 5-6 hours sprinkle the planting with water, but not very much. From the smell of wet ash, beetles do not appear here. Repeat this once or twice a week.
I also use salted flour, which remains after frying the fish. I always pour it on the eggplants, you can even under the spine. That is why I do not come across Colorado beetles on my site. And one more thing to remember: next to potatoes it is better not to plant eggplants.
True, somehow I had to seriously deal with pests on eggplants. Once, due to heavy rains, I could not get to the dacha for several days. When she arrived, she discovered an invasion of field bugs on eggplants. They happily eat eggplant leaves. True, they are less voracious than the Colorado potato beetle. True, bedbugs also leave behind clumps of leaves or only veins.
Use chemical means of protection on eggplants with fruits is no longer possible. Therefore, before planting seedlings in the ground, I spray the soil with a remedy for bedbugs — I water it with the Prestige solution, and I use the same dosage as when spraying potatoes. This drug suppresses the appetite of bedbugs, and eggplant does not seem so tasty to them. I constantly share this experience with my neighbors in the country.
In my opinion, eggplant tastes like mushrooms. What are they worth, for example, eggplant meatballs! And what incomparable caviar is obtained from them or a vegetable stew (sote) - you will just lick your fingers! For those who like to cook, this is a faithful assistant and friend in the kitchen. Say what you like, but a real delicious summer lunch or even dinner with us necessarily includes eggplants. But, apparently, the varieties are gradually aging, losing many valuable qualities, and therefore they have to be constantly replaced with new varieties. And, thank God, this is not a problem now, such varieties are constantly appearing.
In conclusion, I want to offer the readers of the magazine my best, most delicious and time-tested recipe. I advise everyone to try it. it
Read the next part. Eggplant baked with cheese sauce →
Yulia Khramova, gardener, Balashov, Saratov region
Also, continue the formation and workload of plants in the garden:
Continue to grow plants so that you end up with individual plants in 9 cm pots, about 15-20 cm high, ideal for planting. If you plan to grow your plants outdoors and the threat of frost has not diminished, or you are simply not ready to plant them in their final position, make a new larger pot to avoid stunting and rooting.
Even the earliest varieties of eggplant have a relatively long period from germination to the beginning of fruiting, therefore they are grown by seedlings in warm regions, and even more so in central Russia and the Northwest.
Eggplant is a plant with a short daylight hours, it needs 12-14 hours of light during the entire growth period.
Eggplant seeds for seedlings are sown in February
When planting, it is necessary to take into account the temperature of the soil and the room where the seedlings will grow:
Seedlings are grown in two ways - with and without a pick. The first method is suitable when you need to get a large number of seedlings with a shortage of warm area in early spring.
For picking, seeds are often sown in boxes. Leave 3-5 cm between the rows, 2-3 cm between the seeds in a row. When 2-3 true leaves appear in the seedlings, it is dived (transplanted) into more spacious areas with an interval of at least 5-6 cm. By this time, it can be warm enough even in unheated greenhouses. The disadvantage of this method is that eggplants do not tolerate transplanting well and will stay in growth while they take root in a new place.
After picking, the seedlings are planted in more spacious containers.
When you can limit yourself to a small amount of seedlings, it is best to plant the seeds immediately in a separate bowl with a capacity of at least 0.5 liters. When planted in the ground, the plant will almost not hurt and will immediately grow, because it is transplanted with an intact root system and a lump of earth. The disadvantage of this method is that such seedlings take up a lot of a warm and bright place that is scarce in February - March.
When growing eggplants in separate containers, they can be transplanted together with an earthen clod.
Any seedlings before planting in the ground must be taken out of warm rooms to the street for hardening. It starts at least 3-4 days before disembarkation. It is possible much earlier, if the weather permits and the temperature outside will be 12-15 o C.
First, the seedlings are kept outdoors for 1-2 hours, monitoring their condition. She can suffer from strong winds and direct sun. Then it is immediately removed to the room, and quenching is continued the next day. The time spent in the fresh air is gradually increased, and just before planting, when it has become warm enough, the plants can be left outside. It must be remembered that 5 o C for a heat-loving eggplant is almost freezing.
Seedlings are planted in open ground at different times, depending on the climate of the region and temperature conditions. As a rule, in the central zone and in the northwest from May 10, the soil and air are quite warm for an eggplant.
Before planting, eggplant seedlings must be hardened.
Eggplant is a capricious vegetable crop that needs to be provided with full care and attention throughout the season. Of course, it cannot be said that growing a plant is a super complicated process; with due diligence, everything can be done easily and quickly. The main thing is to know what procedures need to be carried out, and how to properly care for eggplants throughout the growing season.
Sowing seeds for seedlings is carried out in late February or early March. You can sow them in boxes or pots if you want to grow seedlings without picking. Eggplants do not tolerate it well. The soil should be fertile, consisting of sod land, peat, sand with the addition of potash, ammonium and phosphorus fertilizers. "Living Earth" or other similar soil is perfect.
When planting in pots, sowing should be done in 2 or 3 seeds in order to leave the most powerful plant later. In boxes, seeds are sown into the soil by 1 - 1.5 cm, the distance between them is at least 5 cm. Then they are watered and placed in a warm (23 - 25 ° C) place, covering the box or pots with foil. Shoots appear on the 8-10th day. Finished seedlings are considered at the age of 60 - 70 days.
After the appearance of the bulk of the seedlings, the box is placed in the light, and the temperature is lowered to 15 - 18 ° C. This promotes better root development. After the appearance of the first true leaf, the seedlings from the boxes are split into separate pots. Their diameter should be at least 10 cm. The plants are shaded for 2 - 3 days.
With the further cultivation of eggplant seedlings, fertilizing is carried out with an interval of 2 weeks. Urea is used for feeding (15 g / liter of water). If the plants are too stretched, it is recommended to add potassium when feeding.
Seedlings are planted in unheated greenhouses when the threat of frost has passed. Before planting, the seedlings are watered abundantly. Plants are placed at the rate of 2 pieces per sq. meter. When planting, you need to make sure that the eggplant cotyledons do not go deep. Seedlings after planting are well watered. The soil in the greenhouse should be fertilized with humus and compost at the rate of 5 kg per sq. meter, well loosened.