Planting eggplant seedlings

Planting eggplant seedlings
Planting eggplant seedlings

Botanically speaking, an eggplant is a berry; according to a cook, it is a vegetable. And in the southern regions of Russia, very often it is called simply blue. In scientific works, it is said that eggplants are herbaceous plants of the Solanaceae family (perennial), pear-shaped fruits of which weigh from 0.35 to 1 kilogram (and their length can reach up to 0.7 meters). Only they are edible (the rest of the plant is not eaten).

berry or vegetable

Important! It is better to use slightly unripe fruits, as overripe berries have a rough texture and are not very tasty.

Eggplant, whose vegetative period varies between 2-5 months, is a very heat-loving plant. In Russia, only the southern regions can boast a fairly large number of warm and sunny days. Therefore, in order for the plants to develop properly and give a good harvest, it is better to plant eggplants through seedlings. How to prepare the seeds of a plant (they are flat and small in shape; light brown in color) for planting? How to get seedlings and how to care for them so thathave the plants become strong, robust and suitable for planting in open ground or a greenhouse? Let's figure it out. Moreover, the process of planting eggplant is quite painstaking, but worth it.

Preparing seeds for seedlings

A bit of history

Based on ancient manuscripts, scientists came to the conclusion that 1500 years ago, wild eggplants grew in India, South Asia and the Middle East. It was in these parts that this plant began to be actively cultivated. Later, in the 15th century, the Europeans "met" with a similar vegetable, appreciating it. And only in the 17th century the berry was brought to the territory of Russia, took root and became quite popular. Initially, eggplant plantings were carried out exclusively in the southern and central regions of the country, and later they began to do this in the northern regions, not without success.

Today, thanks to the fruitful work of breeders, a huge number of varieties of this beautiful plant have been bred, the fruits of which are eaten by people. Vegetables are distinguished by color, size and shape. Medium-sized berries with a dark purple color are considered traditional.

Eggplants are popular in Russia

Date of planting eggplant for seedlings

So when to sow seeds for seedlings? It all depends on where you live. In the southern regions of the country, eggplant seedlings should be planted at the end of March.

Important! Experts do not recommend sowing eggplant seedlings on days such as new moon and full moon.

In regions with more severe climatic conditions, it is better to plant eggplants in February. This is logical: the colder the region, the earlier the sowing of seeds. When calculating the timing of planting, one should be guided by the fact that the seeds will sprout in two weeks. Further, the development of seedlings will take about 2 months (or maybe more) before planting them in a greenhouse or open ground. So it turns out that in colder regions, it is in February that eggplant planting (the days will be indicated below) is the most optimal.

Note! If there are concerns that the fruits will not have enough time to ripen (this takes about 125-145 days), then you can start planting seeds as early as late January or early February.

If you intend to grow vegetables and then store them, the eggplant planting dates are shifted to the end of April (numbers 23 or 24).

Important! When calculating planting dates, you need to add a few "spare" days, since the weather is very unpredictable, and you can easily make a mistake with it. Better play it safe.

Another nuance to remember: the longer the seedlings are at home, the stronger and stronger it becomes. In this case, there is a chance that a plant that has an already developed root system will also be transplanted into open ground more easily (that is, it will not get sick in the future and the engraftment process will be easier).

Remember! A vegetable such as eggplant is rather capricious and does not like it very much when its root system is disturbed.

By the way, the dates for planting seedlings of peppers and eggplants are the same.

Lunar calendarlanding

When should sowing work begin in 2018? What days exactly? The lunar eggplant planting calendar is as follows:

  • Optimal numbers in January: 20, 21, 25, 26, 29 and 30.
  • In February: 18, 21, 22, 25 or 26.
  • Eggplant planting days in March: 1st, 21st, 22nd, 24th, 25th, 26th, 29th or 30th.
  • April: 18, 21, 22, 25, 26 or 29.
  • In May: 18, 19, 22, 23, 27 or 28.

Important! Keep in mind that the eggplant planting calendar is purely advisory (that is, completely optional) in nature. We remind you the main thing again: you should not do any earthwork on the days of the new moon or the full moon. These days, the earth “should rest.”

Notice (for pepper lovers)! According to the lunar calendar, the dates for planting pepper and eggplant seedlings coincide.

What to grow seedlings in

This question is important, since eggplant is a capricious vegetable, and it endures any kind of transplants and picks rather painfully. Therefore, it is preferable to immediately plant the seeds in separate pots, in which the plants will grow until the very moment they are planted in a greenhouse or open ground.

Capacities should not be small, as the height of the seedling sometimes reaches 32-42 cm, and the root system of the plant is quite developed. For these purposes, you can use either ready-made plastic containers, or cups of sour cream, or bags of milk or kefir.

Separate pots for seedlings

Note! So that there is no stagnation of excess fluid in pots, it is necessary from belowmake holes. Don't forget about it.

Some amateur gardeners prefer to use peat pots for seedlings. Others believe that such containers are not very suitable for growing due to the fact that the earth in them quickly dries up (moisture evaporates through the walls of the pot); the plant develops inharmoniously - the roots grow faster than the leaves; before planting in the ground, the roots grow so through the walls that you have to plant the plant along with the pot (and it decomposes very poorly, despite the fact that it is made of organic matter).

But not everyone has large window sills where you can place individual containers with seedlings. Therefore, it is necessary to initially plant the seeds in common containers, and then pick them.

General container for seedlings

Preparing seeds for planting

Seed preparation is as follows:

  • Dip the seeds in warm water (liquid temperature - 40-50 degrees) for 5-10 minutes.
  • Drain the water; wrap the seeds in a damp cloth (preferably gauze), rolled up in several layers; put the bundle in a saucer (or a small flat container); pour a little settled water at room temperature (the fabric should only be moistened).
  • The saucer is placed in a bag, which we tie in such a way that there is air access.
  • We leave the plate with planting material for 5-7 days in a warm place (at a temperature of 25 degrees). We constantly make sure that the gauze is wet.

Important! There should not be too much water in the saucer.

Afteronce the seeds have germinated, they are ready to be planted in the prepared soil

Preparing the ground for seeds

The soil mixture should be quite fertile. At the same time, it differs in lightness, friability and neutrality. You can buy ready-made soil in the distribution network. And you can cook it on your own by mixing river sand, turf and humus in a ratio of 1: 1: 2. Then add superphosphate (based on 20 liters of the mixture 1 glass) and a couple of glasses of wood ash. Then mix everything thoroughly. Everything, the soil mixture for planting eggplant is ready.

Note! To lighten the soil, instead of two parts of humus, you can take only one part of it, and supplement the second with peat.

We recommend preparing the mixture in advance (since autumn) in your backyard and storing it in a cold place (for example, on a balcony) so that it freezes and all pathogens die. Indoors, the soil should be brought in a week before the start of work so that it thaws in natural conditions.

If there are doubts about the quality of the soil mixture, you can shed it with a very strong solution of potassium permanganate. And a day before planting the seeds, in addition to the previously taken measures, treat with a fungicide.

Note! A few days before planting, the soil mixture can be poured into prepared containers for seedlings. Just do not forget to provide drainage in pots (glasses or containers) (at least 10 mm thick), for which expanded clay (or sand) is suitable.

Directly planting seeds

The process is simple, but time-consuming.Before planting eggplant seeds in the soil, they must be disinfected without fail. To do this, we prepare a strong solution of potassium permanganate and keep the seeds in it for half an hour. And you can prepare another mixture consisting of water (200 ml) and hydrogen peroxide (6 ml), heat it up (up to 40 degrees) and lower the planting material into it for 10 minutes. In addition, many 2-3 hours before planting eggplant the soil is cultivated with biological preparations, which not only carry out the function of nourishment, but also the function of protection against various pathogens. Someone thinks this is superfluous.

Next, place the prepared seeds in separate cups (no more than 12 cm high) or a common container (box or container). To do this, you need to fill the soil (with a layer of 7-9 cm), make a small depression in it (15 mm high), place planting material there (2-3 in each hole), sprinkle with soil (1.5-2 high). cm), slightly compact, cover with plastic wrap and put in a warm place (the temperature should be about 25 degrees). After the seeds sprout, remove the film and place the pots (or container) on the windowsill (closer to the sun).

Important! If you use a common container, then plant eggplant seeds in grooves located at a distance of 60-70 mm from each other. And one more thing: when the seeds germinate, the weaker plant should be removed (you remember that there are 2-3 seeds in each hole).

Daily it is necessary to remove the polyethylene from the mini-greenhouse, thereby providing accessair into it; Also keep an eye on soil moisture. If necessary, spray with water.

Note! We recommend sticking a “beacon” into each pot with seedlings, which will indicate not only the vegetable variety, but also the date of planting.

Temperature conditions for seedlings

For good germination of seeds under the film, the optimum air temperature should be about 24-25 degrees (but not lower than 22). In the next week after the appearance of the first shoots, it is precisely this temperature regime that must be maintained. Then the daytime temperature can be lowered to 17 degrees, and the night temperature to 13-15. Such activities contribute to the development of the plant's root system, and also do not allow the plant to stretch upwards.

Note! If you want the seedlings to adapt faster in the garden in the future, you need to harden them. To do this (after two weeks after the seeds have sprouted), it is necessary to create an imitation of natural conditions, when it is hot during the day and cold at night. Therefore, in the daytime we maintain the temperature at 25-27 degrees, and at night - 12-14 degrees.

We harden seedlings

Lighting is very important

If the seeds were introduced into the soil in April, then, most likely, they will have plenty of light on the windowsill. But if the sowing work took place in February or March, then the seedlings will need artificial lighting (at least 12-14 hours a day).

Important! You need to turn on the backlight from 7 am to 7 pm. Moreover, the first three days (after the seeds have sprung) the devicesartificial lighting should work around the clock.

For illumination, you can use not only special lamps (fluorescent, LED) or phytolamps, but also ordinary incandescent lamps. Initially, they are suspended at a distance of 100 mm from the soil mixture, and subsequently half a meter above the seedlings.

Note! If the seedlings are very stretched up, and the leaves are poorly developed, then most likely they do not have enough light or they are planted too closely. And another tip: periodically turn the pots with seedlings around the axis so that each part of the plant is lit and heated.

Don't forget to water

After three days after removing the film, watering should be started and carried out once every three to four days, slightly moistening only the soil around the seedling. When the first leaves appear, water less frequently (once a week). Water for these purposes should be warm (about 25 degrees) and settled.

Watering seedlings

Important! It is necessary to ensure that the soil is slightly moist at all times. Lack of fluid will result in reduced yields, and excess can cause diseases such as blackleg.

For watering it is better to use a spray bottle. The usual method is not recommended, since a strong jet can contribute to the deepening of the planting material, and it will be quite difficult for it to grow through the soil. After the "water procedures" the soil should be loosened a little.

Note! After watering, you can fertilize (if you think it is necessary).

Feeding is notinterfere

We recommend the first feeding with potassium-nitrogen fertilizers 11 days after the seeds have sprouted (if the seedlings are not picked) or 2 weeks after picking. Subsequent feeding (potassium nitrate, "Kristalon" or "Kemira Lux") do not more than once every two weeks.

Important! To avoid burns of the root system, watering should be done before and after each top dressing.

In conclusion

If all conditions are met, including favorable days for planting eggplant, then most likely the harvest of vegetables will please you. And regarding the timing of transplanting seedlings into open ground, one should adhere to the following recommendation: this should be done when it is already warm during the day, and no frosts are expected at night.

Popular topic