How Fast Does Eggplant Grow?

Eggplant (Solanum melongena) is an easy-to-grow warm-season crop. In case you have a backyard plot, a raised mattress, and even a big container, you may develop eggplant. Give these crops loads of heat, brilliant daylight, and wealthy, moist, well-drained soil, and you’ll be properly in your method to your first harvest.

There are various totally different forms of eggplant accessible to develop that you just most likely received’t see in your native grocery store. If you’d like an eggplant that appears like an precise egg on a plant, strive a rounded white selection. In the event you like large stuffed baked eggplant boats, strive a big fleshy selection.

However if you’re extra excited about stirfries and sauteed veggies, I might advocate an extended slim selection. You’ll find eggplants in white, inexperienced, and diverse purple hues.

Eggplant is a backyard staple and is straightforward to develop.

You possibly can simply develop eggplants from seed or get a head begin by shopping for younger crops from a nursery or backyard heart. Probably the most troublesome factor about rising eggplant efficiently could also be that they’re a favourite meals of many pests. Hold a detailed eye in your crops all through the rising season and be proactive about dealing with any new issues.

When you harvest your eggplant, you may look ahead to your personal tasty home-grown dishes. Eggplant is a wonderful summer season meals to cook dinner on a grill. You may also roast, broil, bake, or saute it. These crops love the summer season warmth and can give you loads of eggplants all through the summer season and till the primary frost.

In the event you’re prepared to start out rising, learn on to study extra about eggplant’s totally different development phases and what you may anticipate throughout every stage.

9 Development Phases of Eggplant Vegetation

Stage Key Notes
Deciding on Seeds – Begin seeds indoors 8-9 weeks earlier than the final frost
– Sow ¼-½ inch deep
– Sow 2-3 seeds per pot
– Hold heat and moist
Sowing Seeds – First inexperienced shoot emerges above the soil
– Tiny inexperienced leaflets
– Seem 6-12 days after planting
– Final 2-3 weeks
– Hold heat and moist
Germination – Seed softens and opens
– Tiny root emerges
– You most likely received’t see this stage
– Seeds germinate 5-10 days after planting
– Hold heat and moist
Cotyledons – Seem 7-14 days after cotyledons
– Final for the remainder of the flowers
– Wavy edges, barely tough to powerful
– Starting of fast development
– Time to skinny seedlings
– Time to transplant into the backyard
True Leaves – Seem 7-14 days after cotyledons
– Final for the remainder of the flowers
– Wavy edges, barely tough to powerful
– Starting of fast development
– Time to skinny seedlings
– Time to transplant into backyard
Vegetative development – Quick development fee
– Leaves develop bigger
– Look ahead to pests and ailments
– Take into account companion planting
– 1 to 2 inches of water per week
Flowering – 60+ days after beginning seeds
– Vegetation proceed flowering till frost
– Plant maturity
– Pale purple, star-shaped flowers
– Flowers entice pollinators
– Time to fertilize
Fruiting – Fruits develop after flowering
– 7-14 days from flower to reap
– Fruits are thick and fleshy
– Proceed common watering
– Fertilize once more
Harvest – 65-100 days from seed to reap
– Ripe fruits are agency however with slight give
– Harvest at peak
– Outdated fruits are bitter with powerful seeds
– Reduce stems to reap fruits
– Get pleasure from cooking with eggplant!

It will possibly take anyplace from 65 to 100 days to develop an eggplant from seed to reap. In the event you begin your crops from seed, you may observe every stage.

In the event you begin with nursery-grown inventory, you’ll be beginning at both the “True Leaves” or “Vegetative Development” stage, relying on how mature your plant is on the time of buy.

Some varieties mature sooner than others, and crops will develop quickest beneath excellent situations. Let’s dig in just a little deeper and study extra about every stage.

Eggplant rising fundamentals

Mild Full solar, at the very least 6 or extra hours of direct daylight every day.
Temperature Eggplants prefer it scorching! Perfect daytime temperatures are anyplace between 65°F and 95°F. Vegetation are delicate to chilly and can die after a frost.
Soil sort Wealthy, loamy, well-drained.
Soil moisture Constant soil moisture is right. 1 to 2 inches of water per week.
Soil pH 6.0 to 7.0
Fertilizer Fertilize at flowering and once more throughout fruiting. Use wealthy natural compost or vegetable gardening fertilizer. Observe the instructions on the package deal.
Weed and pest management Take away weeds out of your backyard space. Pests will be difficult to manage. Hand-pick bigger pests. Attempt to keep away from chemical pesticides that additionally kill helpful bugs.

Deciding on Seeds

To develop eggplant from seed, select the variability primarily based in your most popular cooking and look.

Earlier than you may develop an eggplant from seed, you have to choose which selection you wish to strive. There are an assortment of distinctive eggplant varieties, and all may have the identical primary rising necessities and phases of development.

In the event you like making and consuming stuffed eggplant, strive one of many massive meaty varieties. In the event you choose to slice and fry your eggplants, strive an extended skinny, Asian selection. If you’d like one thing distinctive and totally different, strive an oval-shaped white eggplant that appears just like the plant is rising eggs – reputed to be the origin of the plant’s frequent title! There are many enjoyable varieties in shades of white, inexperienced, and purple, lengthy and skinny, broad and plump, or small and rounded.

Eggplant seeds are pale brown in shade, small, flat, and spherical. They need to stay viable for 4 to six years if saved in a cool, dry place. Seed viability will lower over time, however you may nonetheless develop a plant so long as the seeds sprout. In case your seeds are outdated, moldy, or musty smelling, you’re most likely higher off shopping for contemporary seeds.

Sowing Seeds

Close-up of sown eggplant seeds in moist soil, in rows. Seeds are small, rounded, orange-beige. The soil is black and very wet.
For profitable eggplant planting, begin seeds indoors in small pots with high quality soil.

After getting your seeds, you have to to plant them. You’ll most likely discover it best to start out seeds indoors as a result of you should have probably the most management over temperature and soil moisture.

Eggplants are a warm-season crop, so begin the seeds indoors 8 to 9 weeks earlier than the final common spring frost date. In the event you don’t wish to begin your crops from seed, it’s also possible to purchase younger crops from a backyard heart to transplant instantly into your backyard in spite of everything hazard of frost has handed.

In the event you do begin with seeds, put together a number of small seed-starting pots with high-quality seed-starting soil. Fill the pots with soil after which sow 2 to three seeds per pot.

Push them ¼ to ½ inch deep into the soil and moisten the soil within the pots. Hold the pots heat (anyplace from 65°F to 90°F) and moist whereas ready for the seeds to germinate.

Place your pots in a heat, sunny window or use a develop gentle. A seed-starting heating mat will be actually helpful to assist preserve the seeds heat and encourage germination.

If utilizing a heating mat, examine the pots incessantly and water them as usually as essential to preserve the soil moist.


Close-up of a germinated eggplant seed in a starter tray filled with moist soil. The sprout is small, has a short stem and a pair of thin, pale green, slightly hairy leaves.
Below favorable situations, eggplant seeds sometimes germinate inside 5 to 10 days.

In favorable situations, eggplant seeds take 5 to 10 days to germinate. Throughout germination, the powerful outer layer of the seed softens and cracks open to disclose the primary rootlet. The foundation naturally grows down into the soil to anchor the seed in place.

As a result of germination all occurs underground, you received’t see this development stage from informal commentary. The seed will sprout a tiny white root that can shortly develop longer and shortly begin to make tiny branches, and it seeks moisture, vitamins, and anchor factors within the soil.

Hold the soil heat and moist so the roots will proceed to develop. A tiny inexperienced sprout will seem inside a number of days of root formation and poke up by way of the soil floor. You’ll then transfer on to the subsequent stage, cotyledons!


Close-up of eggplant sprouts in a square container with moist soil. The sprouts are small, have thin pale green stems and a pair of cotyledons. Cotyledons are the first leaves to be lanceolate with pointed tips.
Following seed germination, cotyledons sometimes seem inside 6 to 12 days.

After the seed germinates, it’s best to have only some extra days to attend till you see the cotyledons. After planting seeds, if the situations are favorable, it’s best to see the cotyledons inside roughly 6 to 12 days.

The cotyledons are the primary seed leaves of a plant. They don’t look something just like the true leaves that kind subsequent. Eggplant cotyledons sometimes seem as a pair of skinny, pointed leaves. Often, you will note one with three seed leaves.

These tiny crops are very delicate throughout this section. The leaves and stems shall be very tender and susceptible to drying out, excessive solar, or chilly.

Hold them heat and moist and examine on them incessantly to make certain they don’t dry out for too lengthy. The cotyledon stage will final roughly 14 to 21 days, however earlier than they disappear, you’ll most likely see the emergence of the primary true leaves.

True Leaves

Close-up of young eggplant seedlings in a starter seed tray on a light windowsill. Seedlings have pairs of oval bright green leaves with slightly wavy edges. The tray has rounded deep cells filled with soil.
These oval-shaped leaves regularly develop bigger, with wavy edges and a barely fuzzy texture.

The primary true leaves seem round 7 to 14 days after the cotyledons. The higher the situations, the sooner the plant will develop. And as soon as the true leaves kind, you’ll discover your plant grows sooner. At this level, it has already put within the power wanted to sprout and begin its new life, and now all of the power is invested in development.

The true leaves of an eggplant are considerably oval-shaped with regularly tapering suggestions. The primary couple of true leaves shall be comparatively small however will begin rising bigger. The bigger leaves shall be wavy across the edges and barely fuzzy or tough to the contact.

When your plant has grown a few true leaves, it’s time to do some thinning. In case you have multiple plant rising in a pot, take away all however the healthiest-looking seedling.

Use sharp scissors to snip the stems of the crops you’re eradicating. In the event you pull them out by the roots, you’ll possible disturb the roots of the plant you are attempting to domesticate.

Transplanting Younger Vegetation

Close-up of male hands transplanting young eggplant seedlings in the garden. The seedlings have long hairy stems and medium oval green leaves with slightly wavy edges and a rough texture. The soil is loose, dark brown.
Transplant the younger crops into well-prepared backyard soil, making certain they’re spaced round 18 inches aside.

When crops are round 5 inches tall, and all hazard of frost has handed, you can begin getting ready them for transplant outdoor. The very first thing to do is get them used to harsher out of doors situations; this course of is known as hardening off.

To start, take your younger crops exterior, the place they’ll expertise some restricted publicity to brilliant daylight. Put them in a location shielded from sturdy winds and curious animals. Deliver them indoors at night time if the temperature drops under 55°F.

Permit your crops some protected out of doors time day by day for per week, exposing them to barely extra daylight every day. After per week of hardening off, your younger crops ought to be able to transplant into the backyard.

Eggplants can simply be grown in a raised mattress, container, or conventional backyard rows. Eggplants love scorching climate, so wait till daytime temperatures are round 70°F earlier than transplanting them exterior.

Dig a gap in your ready backyard web site with wealthy, fertile, well-drained soil, and thoroughly switch the younger plant into the outlet. Area crops about 18 inches aside to provide them loads of house to develop.

Vegetative Development

Close-up of growing eggplant plants in rows in a garden. The soil is covered with thick layers of straw mulch. The eggplant plant has large, oval leaves with a slightly fuzzy and rough texture. The leaves are dark green with wavy edges and slightly purple veins on the underside.
Offering ample daylight and protecting the soil constantly moist is essential.

As soon as your younger crops have developed a number of true leaves, they may begin fast vegetative development. The roots develop shortly under the floor, and your plant frequently produces new leaves in preparation for flowering and fruit improvement.

The inexperienced leaves take in daylight, water, and carbon dioxide and bear photosynthesis to create oxygen and sugar power that the plant must develop.

Throughout this time, your plant will want loads of brilliant daylight. Eggplants ought to be in a location with full solar, receiving at the very least six or extra hours of direct daylight every day.

Hold the soil moist as properly. Eggplants want 1 to 2 inches of water every week. In the event you don’t obtain that a lot rainfall, do some supplemental watering across the base of the crops to make sure they get a very good deep drink of water. You may also apply an natural mulch round your crops to assist keep soil moisture.

Hold a detailed look ahead to insect pests your complete time your plant is rising. Quite a few bugs eat eggplant crops, and these pests may cause a substantial amount of injury. Look ahead to holes in leaves, leaves changing into skinny and “veiny” wanting, wilting and leaf curling, and bugs on the crops.

Pests and ailments

Top view, close-up of many Colorado potato beetles on an eggplant plant in a sunny garden. the plant has large oval leaves of pale green color with wavy edges. The Colorado potato beetle is a small insect with a distinctive appearance. It has an oval body with bright stripes and patterns. The head and chest are yellow, and the wings alternate black and yellow stripes. The beetle is round and has six legs.
The Colorado beetle is a standard insect pest that may trigger injury to eggplant crops.

Flea Beetles

  • Small black beetles
  • They chew quite a few small holes in leaves
  • These will be notably devastating to seedlings and younger crops
  • Older crops are extra tolerant however nonetheless obtain intensive injury
  • Quite common
  • Troublesome to manage

Potato Beetles

  • Medium-sized orange, white, and black-striped beetles
  • Larvae are soft-bodied, brilliant orange with black spots
  • Larvae and adults feed on eggplant and potato leaves
  • Chew holes round edges of leaves
  • Troublesome to manage
  • Hand-pick bugs and drop them into soapy water


  • Giant inexperienced caterpillars
  • Feed voraciously on leaves
  • Frequent on tomatoes and eggplants
  • Shortly devour whole leaves and may defoliate smaller crops
  • Take away by hand (they might look daunting, however these caterpillars are innocent to people)


  • Giant bugs with distinguished sucking mouthparts
  • Suck juices from leaves
  • Broken leaves and fruits develop useless brown spots
  • Take away by hand and drop into soapy water


  • Many types of blight assault eggplants
  • A fungal an infection that impacts all elements of the plant
  • Causes extreme wilting, blackened useless leaves, stems, and fruits
  • Shortly kills crops
  • Don’t permit your crops to sit down in moist soil
  • Rotate crops

Bacterial Wilt

  • Bacterial an infection
  • Causes sudden wilting and dying
  • Leaves, stems, and fruits flip brown
  • Rotate crops
  • Keep away from planting eggplants, tomatoes, or potatoes in successive years

Many bugs feed on eggplant leaves, and they are often very troublesome to manage. It’s possible you’ll be tempted to purchase some broad-spectrum insecticide and spray your crops frequently, however keep in mind that not all bugs are dangerous.

Eggplants (and most different backyard crops!) depend on pollinators to supply fruits. Broad-spectrum herbicides will kill helpful bugs in addition to pests. In the event you should use a pesticide, spray sparingly and within the late night when pollinators are much less lively.

Ideas for a Wholesome Crop

Crop rotation Don’t develop eggplants, tomatoes, or potatoes in the identical place two years in a row. These crops all entice most of the similar pests. Rotate them with different crops to discourage repeated infestations.
Soil moisture Control soil moisture. Eggplants shouldn’t be sitting in moist soil, however they do like constantly moist soil. Water frequently so crops obtain 1 to 2 inches of water every week.
Be proactive Test your crops frequently. In the event you discover any indicators of sickness or illness, take acceptable steps to appropriate the difficulty shortly so it doesn’t worsen or unfold to close by crops.
Hold space clear Clear up particles and useless plant matter. Insect pests and slugs like to cover out in leafy particles.

Companion Vegetation

A close-up of a garden bed with growing rows of eggplants and garlic as companion plants. The eggplant plant has upright purple stems with large green oval leaves with wavy edges. The fruits are large, oval, oblong, with a glossy dark purple skin.
Follow companion planting with eggplants by rising pest-repellent crops.

One other method to profit your backyard crops is to apply companion planting. Companion crops are totally different species that develop properly collectively and profit one another in some methods. Companion crops can present assist, shade, improve soil, entice pollinators, or repel pests.

As a result of eggplants entice so many pests, strive rising companion crops close by that assist repel pests. Some wonderful pest-deterrent crops embody marigold, oregano, and kohlrabi. You possibly can plant borage close by to assist entice pollinators, and you may plant beans to assist enrich the soil.


Close-up of an eggplant flower on a blurred green background. The flower is small, star-shaped, with purple papery petals and a bright orange center.
Eggplants flower in about 60 days, signaling maturity for fruit manufacturing.

An eggplant could begin flowering in as little as 60 days after seeding. So long as the plant stays wholesome, flowering will possible proceed till the primary frost. Flowering indicators that the plant has reached maturity and is able to produce fruits.

Eggplant flowers are pale purple and star-shaped. The flowers are self-fertile, that means {that a} single plant can produce fruits. However you’ll virtually all the time have a greater yield if the flowers are cross-pollinated with one other close by eggplant. When you begin seeing flowers, look ahead to the beginnings of the primary fruits!

Eggplants are pretty heavy feeders and can tremendously profit from fertilizer purposes throughout their rising season. When your eggplant plant begins to flower, add some wealthy natural compost across the sides of the plant and thoroughly work it into the soil.

You may also use a general-purpose vegetable gardening fertilizer and comply with the instructions on the package deal. Watch out to not over-fertilize, nevertheless, which is able to trigger the crops to develop loads of leaves, to the detriment of fruit manufacturing.


Close-up of a ripe eggplant fruit on a bush in a garden, against a blurred green background. The fruit is medium in size, oblong, oval, covered with a smooth, glossy purple-black skin.
As soon as eggplant crops flower, it takes round one to 2 weeks for the fruits to completely mature.

After your crops flower, growing absolutely mature fruits will take per week or two. The fruits will proceed to develop however don’t wait till they’re as massive as potential. Fruits are probably the most tender and candy when they’re younger. Older fruits will are typically bitter with bigger, more durable seeds.

There are numerous eggplants with totally different coloured, formed, and sized fruits. Some eggplants truly appear to be white eggs rising on the plant. Different white eggplants are rectangular and longer. One other number of eggplant produces fruits which are small inexperienced orbs.

Probably the most acquainted forms of eggplant produce both thick meaty fruits or lengthy slender fruits that vary in shade from pale lilac to deep purplish-black or a mix of purple and white. Get pleasure from watching them develop as a result of quickly, will probably be time to reap!


Close-up of a man's hand picking a ripe eggplant in a sunny garden. The plant has beautiful large oval leaves with wavy edges. The fruit is medium-sized, firm, oval in shape, with a bright purple glossy smooth skin.
Ripe fruits have clean, agency pores and skin and small, tender seeds.

Eggplants require anyplace from 65 to 100 days from sowing seed till the primary harvest. The timing will rely in your eggplant selection and rising situations. It’s possible you’ll have to do a little bit of guesswork to determine precisely when it’s best to harvest the fruits. When the fruits begin to appear to be the ripe ones you anticipate, it’s most likely a very good time to reap them.

A ripe fruit will look prepared and seem in its prime. In the event you really feel it, the pores and skin shall be clean and agency. The fruit can even really feel agency however not rock arduous; it’ll have a really slight give to it.

Outdated fruits will turn into gentle and wrinkly. Gentle brown spots on the fruits can point out that they’re overripe or diseased. Inside, ripe fruit may have small, tender seeds that can most certainly be white or off-white in shade. An outdated fruit may have bigger, darker seeds that begin to really feel arduous.

To reap an eggplant, maintain onto the fruit with one hand and snip the stem simply above the fruit with sharp scissors or pruning shears. Don’t attempt to pull or twist to take away the fruit. This can injury the plant, and you might find yourself pulling your complete plant from the bottom.

Now that you just’ve harvested some eggplants, what is going to you do with them? Retailer your eggplants within the crisper drawer of your fridge for 1 to 2 weeks, and plan for an eggplant feast!

Whereas a uncooked eggplant is technically edible, most individuals don’t eat them uncooked as a result of they’re fairly bitter. Eggplant tastes greatest when cooked. You possibly can bake it, sautee it, roast it, grill it, use it in stirfry, or bake it till gentle and mash it right into a creamy dip (“baba ganoush” is my favourite method to eat eggplant!).

Last Ideas

If you’re a fan of eggplant, you may develop your personal. In case you have a full-size backyard, a single raised mattress, and even a big container, this plant grows properly in any sunny, moist, heat location.

Maintain your crops by watering them frequently, giving them some additional vitamin whereas they’re flowering and fruiting, and managing any pests and ailments earlier than they get uncontrolled. As soon as your crops are producing fruits, get pleasure from your home-grown produce in lots of scrumptious dishes.

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