This summer vegie is perfect stuffed, grilled, baked or stir-fried – all the more reason to grow and have a fresh supply on hand! They need a little bit of room to grow, but you can also grow smaller varieties to save on space. Eggplant, also known as aubergine in the United Kingdom and brinjal in Asia and Africa, have large, richly coloured fruit with smooth glossy skin. Eggplant is a versatile vegie that can be used in a wide range of culinary styles and dishes, including moussaka and baba ghanoush as well as being delicious char grilled or oven roasted.

How to grow eggplant in a garden

  1. Start seeds in punnets or small pots filled with Yates Seed Raising Mix.  
  2. Choose a sunny spot in the garden and enrich soil with Yates Dynamic Lifter Soil Improver & Plant Fertiliser.
  3. When seedlings are 7 to 10cm tall, transplant into the garden bed, mulch with organic mulch such as sugar cane or pea straw and water in well. 
  4. Feed weekly with Yates Thrive Vegie & Herb Liquid Plant Food
  5. Stake as the plants grow to help support the weight of the fruit.


How to grow eggplant in a pot

Eggplants are quite happy in containers, but choose plants with smaller fruit, such as ‘White Star’ or Lebanese eggplants.

  1. Choose a pot at least 300mm wide and deep and position in full sun.
  2. Fill pot with a quality potting mix, like Yates Potting Mix with Dynamic Lifter. Sow seeds.
  3. Feed weekly with Yates Thrive Vegie & Herb Liquid Plant Food.
  4. A regular harvest promotes new growth.

Yates® Eggplant Blacknite is a vigorous, high yielding variety with striking purple-black skin. It’s rich in vitamin C, thrives in hot weather and is a fantastic eggplant to grow at home. 

Here’s your simple eggplant sowing and growing guide:

  • Sow Yates® Eggplant Blacknite seeds direct where they are to grow, in a sunny vegie patch, into well-drained soil that’s been enriched first with some Yates Dynamic Lifter® Soil Improver & Plant Fertiliser. Or seedlings can be raised in punnets of Yates Seed Raising Mix and transplanted when they’re around 6-8 cm high. Only transplant seedlings once the risk of frost has passed.
  • Seedlings should pop up in around 10 -14 days.
  • To encourage a great harvest, as soon as the seedlings are established start feeding each week with Yates Thrive® Flower & Fruit Soluble Fertiliser, which is boosted with extra potassium which promotes flowering and fruit development.
  • Water plants regularly to keep the soil moist. Mulching around the root zone will help retain soil moisture. Consistent soil moisture will help reduce the chance of blossom end rot.
  • Eggplant fruit can be picked starting from 14 weeks after sowing.
  • For best fruit quality, harvest when the skin is smooth and shiny. Cut fruit from the plant using secateurs, leaving 2 cm of stem on the fruit to improve storage.
  • Regular harvesting will promote further flowering and fruiting.
  • Monitor plants for pests such as whitefly and spider mites and control with regular sprays of Yates Nature’s Way® Vegie & Herb Spray Natrasoap®.

Yates varieties

Eggplant Blacknite

Large, richly-coloured fruit with smooth, glossy skin. A vigorous, high yielding variety. Also called Aubergine, it can be used across a wide range of culinary dishes

Growing tips

  • Harvest fruit when the skin is smooth. If it starts to wrinkle, the flesh will be coarse and tough.

  • The fruit stalks are hard and woody, so cut them with a pair of secateurs to avoid damaging the plant.

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