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ophelia seeds

Ophelia seeds

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Eggplants are warm loving plants. Sow seeds indoors around 4/1 into good seed starting mix (we recommend Vermont Compost’s Fort Light). Ideal temperature for germination is 80-90° (use heating mat). Days to germination: 10-14. Once leaves appear, grow plants at 72°. Be sure seedlings have adequate light (a windowsill will not do for eggplants) and keep plants from becoming pot-bound because this will permanently stunt plants. If seedlings are getting too big for their pot but the weather is still too cold outside, transplant them into bigger pots. Plant seedlings outside late May into fertile garden soil with lots of compost or decomposed manure. If your soil pH is greater than 7 (which is typical of clay soils in Southeast Michigan) add sulfur to acidify soil. Space plants 1 ½ – 2 ft. apart. If plants begin to flower when plants are less than 1 ft. tall, hand remove early flowers for 2 weeks until plants are bigger. Stake plants if they begin to fall over.

Clip individual eggplants when full size but before they become hard when squeezed. Over-ripe eggplants will turn bitter.

Eggplant is a bit difficult to save seed from in zone 5b because they need extended heat to ripen their seeds fully. Eggplants are primarily self-pollinating but insects will cause significant cross pollination. To keep variety pure, isolate by ½ mile or cover plants with low tunnels (using thin row cover fabric) to exclude pollinators. Always save seeds from the best plants. Allow eggplants to turn yellow/orange/tan and become hard – leave them on the plants until just before frost.

Aubergine ‘Ophelia’ F1 Hybrid Solanum molengena Egg Plant

Sow aubergine seeds from February to May for indoor cultivation or March to April for growing outdoors. Soaking them in warm water for 24 hours before sowing will assist germination.

Sow seeds on the surface of a free draining, moist seed compost and cover with 6mm (0.25″) layer of vermiculite or compost. Place in a propagator or seal the container inside a polythene bag at constant temperature of 18-21C (65-70F) until after germination which takes 10-14 days. When the seedlings are large enough to handle, carefully transplant them into 7.5cm (3″) pots and grow on at a slightly reduced temperature.

When all risk of frost is passed and the soil is warm, harden off and plant aubergines in their final positions. For indoor cultivation, pot on into larger containers or plant 2 aubergines per growbag. Outdoors, plant aubergines in rich fertile soil at a distance of 90cm (3′) apart, in rows spaced 90-120cm (3-4′) apart. Grow aubergines in a sheltered position in full sun. Planting through black plastic mulch will help to warm the soil, control weeds and save moisture.

Seeds and garden supplies will normally be delivered within the time period stated against each product as detailed above. Plants, bulbs, corms, tubers, shrubs, trees, potatoes, etc. are delivered at the appropriate time for planting or potting on. Delivery times will be stated on the product page above, or in your order acknowledgement page and email.

Orders for packets of seed incur a delivery charge of £2.99.

Orders which include any other products will incur a delivery charge of £5.99.

Where an order includes both packets of seeds and other products, a maximum delivery charge of £6.99 will apply – regardless of the number of items ordered.

Large items may incur a higher delivery charge – this will be displayed in your shopping basket.

Please see our Delivery page for further details, and more information on different charges that may apply to certain destinations.

For more information on how we send your plants please visit our Helpful Guide on plant sizes.

Open OPhelia Eggplant

Early variety. Popular for small fruited and mini eggplant. Medium busy plant and have oval shape eggplant. Grows in clusters and has deep purple color. Stabilized by Telsing Andrews.

Planting tip: Sow indoors 8-12 weeks before the last frost date. Transplant outside when day time temperature is 18°C and night time temperature is more than 10°C. Germination can take up to 7-14 days.

Harvesting tip: Harvest eggplants when skin is glossy and thumbprint will not leave an impression.