Planting and caring for eggplants

Aubergines are a Mediterranean vegetable that can be used in many ways. Aubergines can also be grown in your own garden or on the balcony due to their low growth height of 80-100 cm. Also referred to as eggplant, it is used in the French classic Ratatouille. Also in Turkish and Greek cuisine, filled with minced meat or as a casserole in the well-known Musaka.

Marinated on the grill, as part of vegetable skewers, or in casseroles, the fascinating fruit vegetables are best processed and enjoyed. Due to their high heat requirement, the plants can be grown in containers on the balcony or in a sheltered location in the garden. The vegetables can be grown from seed from February or planted out as finished plants from the end of May. Night temperatures of over 15° C are necessary for rapid further growth. Discover the variety of our plants online shop! You can find out everything about caring for aubergines in the following article.

Worth knowing Location Cultivation Planting Care Watering Fertilizing Multiplying In the tub HarvestingPests & DiseasesFAQ

Interesting facts about eggplants

Botanical name: Solanum melongena Other names: aubergine, eggplant, eggplant, aubergine (in Austria) Use: fruit vegetable for Mediterranean and oriental cuisine. Not suitable for fresh consumption because the fruits contain a high solanine content when they are raw and unripe. To be eaten boiled or fried only. Ideal for grilling or stuffing with meat or other vegetables. Origin: East India Cultivation period: May to October, mainly in a foil house or greenhouse. Outdoor culture only in climatically favorable locations such as a place in front of a south wall. Well suited for raised beds on balconies and terraces. Flower colors: pink-violet Harvest: July to early October Special features:

Fruits oblong or round and variable in colour.

In which location does the aubergine feel most comfortable?

Aubergines need a sunny, warm and sheltered place. A location in front of a south wall that reflects the heat is ideal. The special type of vegetable also feels at home on the balcony in large containers or in raised beds, because the climate is ideal in the protection of walls and walls and the plants are protected from the rain.

How is the cultivation of eggplants?

The sowing of aubergines starts in February in the greenhouse or on the windowsill at temperatures of 22-24° C. The fine seeds germinate after two to four weeks. This so-called pre-cultivation produces strong plants within 8-10 weeks, which can be planted outside from the end of May.

Our gardening tip: For better germination, soak the aubergine seeds in warm water for 12 hours.

How do I plant my eggplants in the garden?

From the end of May, the danger of night frosts is over and the warmth-loving aubergines can be planted directly outdoors. Earlier planting is possible, but should be done in a greenhouse or with a polytunnel. It doesn’t matter whether you grew the plants yourself from seeds or bought them ready-made plants. With the right knowledge about the needs, the cultivation of aubergines is a lot of fun.

Aubergines prefer a humus-rich, well-drained and nutrient-rich soil. With special tomato and vegetable soil, you can give the plants the best possible start. The purely natural product offers the vegetables optimal conditions for rapid growth. Dig a planting hole 20 cm deep and first add some special soil. Plant spacing of 50-60 cm in the row and a row spacing of 60-80 cm have proven useful. This gives the plants with sprawling shoots and large leaves enough space. Mini varieties can be planted closer together. Water the vegetable plants thoroughly immediately after planting. You can buy the right potting soil from us.

Our gardening tip: A layer of mulch helps keep the water in the soil and reduces evaporation.

How do I care for my eggplants?

rods for stabilization

The growth height of aubergines depends heavily on the variety, the location and the temperature profile. Ideally, a stick is attached to the plant directly when planting. This prevents kinking and supports the plant.

ensure fertilization

Aubergines belong to the group of wind pollinators. This means that when cultivated in a polytunnel or greenhouse, flowers occasionally fall off and no fruit are formed. For reliable pollination, eggplant plants should be gently shaken several times after flowering.

How do I water my aubergines correctly?

Eggplants need a steady supply of water for growth and fruiting. But it is important that there is no waterlogging. The eggplant care is similar to the tomato care and should only be watered below, otherwise a lot of water will evaporate through the large leaves. As a rule of thumb, the soil should be dry in the upper 2-3 cm before each watering. The amount of water and the watering interval depend essentially on the temperature and the soil conditions.

How do I fertilize my eggplants?

Aubergines need humus-rich soil and an adequate supply of nutrients for growth and fruit set. Regular doses of organic natural fertilizer are necessary for a good harvest. Dose the fertilizer according to the instructions on the package and give the plants the optimal amounts of nutrients.

Our fertilizer calendar for your vegetables

How do I propagate my eggplants?

Aubergines are grown exclusively from seeds. To obtain seeds, you must leave the fruit on the plant for a long time. You can only get seeds from overripe eggplants yourself. Cultivation with purchased aubergine seeds is easier.

How do I plant my aubergines in the tub?

Eggplants are best planted in pots. Mini varieties with a growth height of 50-60 cm are particularly suitable for pot culture. These are extremely decorative on the balcony or terrace and can be harvested continuously in midsummer. The containers used should hold at least 10 liters of soil to give the plants enough space for root growth. Sufficient fertilization and even watering are important when cultivating in a bucket. To avoid waterlogging, a drainage layer should be placed at the bottom of the container when planting.

How do I harvest and use my aubergines?

The fruits of the aubergines are ready to be harvested as soon as they are fully colored and glossy. Cut the aubergines with a sharp knife. The right time to harvest is reached as soon as the shell can be easily pressed in. Due to the high proportion of water, the vegetables are low in calories and can be combined in many ways due to their low taste. Aubergines are usually grilled, steamed, braised or fried and refined with aromatic herbs such as thyme or sage. By salting the vegetable slices, the bitter substances contained in the pulp are removed and the vegetables are optimally prepared for further processing.

Vegetable tower with aubergines

Here you can find the delicious recipe and learn how to use aubergines. Our instructions are ideal for copying. Enjoy your meal!

To the recipe

What pests and diseases can the eggplant get?

If the aubergine feels comfortable in one location, it is robust and not very susceptible to diseases and pests. A pest infestation is often a result of stressful situations or too close a stand. It is therefore important that the site conditions for the aubergines are optimal.


First, aphids are found on the tips of the shoots. If detected early enough, hosing down with water can help. In addition, spraying with organic plant treatment prevents further spread. The plant’s own immune system is strengthened in a natural way and the spread of pests is minimized.

FAQ — Frequently asked questions about eggplants

Why does my aubergine only have flowers but no fruit?

Aubergines need an even supply of water, temperatures above 15° C, sufficient nutrients and light. If the site conditions are optimal, fruit set. As a gardener’s tip, shaking the plant is recommended for better fruit setting. This ensures that the flowers are pollinated and the result is a rich crop of fruit.

How long will it take before I can harvest the first aubergines?

Eggplants are heat-loving plants. Planting out is therefore only possible from mid-May. After 8-10 weeks after planting, you can harvest the first fruits.

Which plants are suitable for planting in combination with eggplants?

Eggplants thrive best without direct plants in the vicinity. You should avoid mixed plantings with tomatoes, potatoes, peppers and physalis.

What color can eggplants be?

Eggplants come in the classic purple color, along with varieties that have macerated or cream-colored skin.

Why can aubergines taste bitter after cooking?

If improperly prepared, aubergines can taste bitter after cooking. A good tip for preparation is that you cut the raw vegetables into slices, salt them and after 1 hour pour off the escaping plant juice. Now wash the vegetables briefly or remove the salt with kitchen paper. With this method of preparation, the vegetables will definitely not taste bitter and the texture will be softer.

Growing vegetables in the smallest space — how to harvest on the balcony!

Even without a garden, you can harvest fresh vegetables, fruit and aromatic herbs. Design your small garden on the balcony and experience the variety of vitamins and attractive plants. There are many different types of mini vegetables for balcony boxes and pots that taste delicious and look good.

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