Update on Growing Eggplants That Survive Year Round

This year-round gardening with vegetables still blows my mind, but I have a few plants that have been in my garden for over a year now. Yes, they go dormant (and even look dead) when the cold weather moves into Florida, but they come back and produce even better the second time around.

Will they still be around next year? I have no idea. But this Spring season has been a great one for my bell pepper plant and now my eggplant is showing signs of producing as well.

In the Spring of 2017 I planted two eggplant plants. One was eaten up by a tomato worm and the other continued to grow and grow. It gave me no eggplants until well into the season. I finally got one. Only one. I tried the paintbrush pollination method but still nothing happened.

The plant got huge. I had to cut it back because it was taking over the garden bed. When the cold weather came, the entire plant turned brown and I thought that was it.  I’m used to plants dying and having to be planted in Spring.  When my vegetable plants don’t die, and instead begin to grow again, it amazes me.  I didn’t even know vegetables could do that.

dead eggplant
Eggplant plant turned brown during Florida winter.

However, at the base of the plant some greenery remained. As the weather warmed, more leaves and stems appeared.
Screen Shot 2018-05-09 at 5.55.53 PM
The plant is now large again, and getting lots of flowers, which contain spikes.

eggplant flower
Spikes on eggplant flower

As of now, May 2018, the plant has been flowering like crazy but again the eggplants themselves were missing. So the other day I pulled lots of the flowers off (that is when I noticed how spiky they were!). I don’t know if that is what the plant needed, but suddenly I now see a small eggplant. There are signs of maybe a couple more ready to pop out as well.

Too many flowers? I don’t know if that was a coincidence, but if your eggplants are not producing, try removing some of the buds.

little eggplant
A new eggplant growing on this plant in it’s second year
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