Yes, I know nearly everyone calls them egg plants. But have a think about it for a minute. I am talking about the fruit that is on the plant. So what would that be? Egg plant fruit? Hence, I call them egg fruit. Have a look at this Lebanese egg plant. Hasn’t it got some fruit on it. I planted it four months ago and have already picked twenty fruit. This is the second flush.
As always when you grow vegetables without using chemicals to suppress the insects it takes a while to work out what grows well in your area and how much insect damage is too much. In the picture to the left you just might see the little diabolical that is causing the holes in the leaves. Look for a grasshopper. He’s sitting on the leaf to the right of the cluster of egg fruit. And while this grasshopper, along with all of his mates is having a bean feast on the egg plant, in turn he is becoming food for a couple of different birds.
Organic Gardens encourage birds and predatory insects
I am pleasantly surprised to have a magpie patrolling the garden and rounding up grasshoppers. What surprised me more was the mynah bird that also targets them.
The idea of organic gardening is to create an environment where the plants can grow without the need of chemicals. When it comes to pests, you want to encourage the predators like lady birds, hover flies and lacewings. Letting plants go to seed will encourage them to visit and stay. Notice the two ladybirds in the top right corner of the picture above.
The last time I grew egg plant, I had the best plants you had ever seen, but very few egg fruit. I had 200 plants and I sent about 4 x 10kg boxes to market. This time I reckon I will pick that much off this one plant.
I didn’t think it would grow this well so didn’t bother tying it up or staking it. The weight of the fruit is pulling the branches to the ground. I can only attribute this to the amount of organic matter in my garden beds and the cracker dust I add also the rock dust. It has been quite hot, which helps with egg plants and we have had regular rain. I have a dripper system as well.
Needless to say I am pleased with this. All I have to do now is find the perfect recipe.