Eggplant, Heirloom Asian, Organic by Renee's Garden
Heirloom Eggplants: Asian Mix
Equal Parts: Purple, Green and White Fingers
BEST TO START INDOORS
In early spring, start indoors about 2 months before outdoor night temperatures are reliably in the 50-55°F (10-13°C) range. Sow seeds 1/4 inch deep and 1 inch apart in a container of seed starting mix. Keep moist and warm 80-85°F (27-30°C) and provide a strong light source until ready to plant outside. When seedlings are 2 inches tall, transplant into deeper individual containers. Maintain at 70-75°F (21-24°C). Feed with half-strength fertilizer every 2 weeks until weather is warm enough to gradually acclimate seedlings to outdoor conditions. Transplant 2 feet apart into rich soil in full sun.
Don’t transplant these heat-lovers outdoors until nights stay securely above 55°F (13°C). Prepare soil well with aged manure or compost. Plant only robust seedlings with well-developed roots and mulch well. Fertilize plants regularly throughout the season.
HARVEST AND USE
Pick when fruits have sized up and are firm fleshed and glossy. Slice 1/2 inch thick, brush with olive oil and broil until tender. Then layer with a rich tomato sauce, fresh herbs and several cheeses to make Eggplant Parmesan. Bake whole in a hot oven, then scoop out flesh and mash with garlic, olive oil, lemon juice and chopped parsley for a savory dip to serve on toasted pita bread.