Eggplant Farming

Eggplant, is cultivated for the immature fruits which are roasted, fried, stuffed, cooked, pickled, or processed. Preferred types are the long, purple varieties with green calyx, but some regions also prefer the long or round, green-colored varieties. It is grown in 18,000 ha all over the country, but major producers are Ilocos, Central Luzon, and Southern Tagalog.

Eggplant Varieties

Batangas long purple
Claveria KS
Long purple
Tanauan KS

Climatic Requirements for Eggplants

Eggplant can be grown from low to mid elevations throughout the year. Production is best, however, during the dry, cool months in sandy loam soil. Clay loam to clayey soils, with pH of 5.5-6.5 can also be used.

Land Preparation

Prepare land by plowing and harrowing twice. Make furrows 1.0 m apart. Spread manure along rows or hills at 1-2 handfuls per hill. Apply complete fertilizer (14-14-14) at 10-15 g/hill and cover lightly with soil.

Planting Eggplants

Transplanting. Irrigate area before transplanting. Plant one seedling per hill at a distance of 0.5-1.0 m depending on variety. Provide 1.0-m-long stake to prevent lodging. Irrigate by furrow every 7-14 days depending on season and soil type.Side-dress with urea at 10 g/hill every 2-4 weeks during the vegetative stage. Use equal parts urea and 0-0-60 at the start of fruiting.Weed 2-3 times during the growing season, or as necessary. Practice mulching to minimize weed growth and maintain uniform soil moisture.

Pest Management

Avoid monocropping. Plant different varieties in one area. Intercrop with other vegetables and include repellants such as garlic, marigold, ginger, and lemon grass. In case of tip borer, remove and burn damaged shoot together with the larvae. Spray (Selecron or Trebon) at recommended rates if green leafhopper incidence is severe. Intercropping and mulching reduce the incidence of insect pests. Eggplant can be grown economically even without pesticides.

Harvesting Eggplants

Harvest mature fruits which are shiny and soft. More frequent harvesting can reduce damage from fruit borers. Harvest all fruits including deformed and damaged ones to prevent spread of pests and diseases. Harvesting can last for 3-6 months. Several varieties can be grown for 1-2 years.

Post Harvest

Discard or bury severely infested fruits or make into compost. Grade according to market standards. Pack in crates lined with banana leaves. Do not expose to high temperatures.
Here are some videos about cooking eggplants, and eggplant recipes:
Source(s): PCARRD-DOST Information Bulletin No. 147/1999

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