Aubergine Growing Guide

Solanum melongena


Crop Rotation Group

Solanaceae (Potato and tomato family) 


Warm, fertile, and well drained.


Full sun.

Frost tolerant

A semi-tropical plant; cannot tolerate frost.


Eggplants are heavy feeders, so enrich the soil well before transplanting. Give them regular moisture and keep their roots well mulched and weed free. When flowers start forming, feed with slow release potassium-rich organic fertiliser.


Single Plants: 40cm (1' 3") each way (minimum)
Rows: 35cm (1' 1") with 45cm (1' 5") row gap (minimum)

Sow and Plant

Frost areas: sow under cover 6 weeks before last spring frost. Plant out in late spring, when the weather is settled and warm. Frost free areas: Sow seed directly or in seed beds/seed trays in spring
Our Garden Planner can produce a personalized calendar of when to sow, plant and harvest for your area.


Plants need staking once they start bearing. Mulch to keep soil lightly moist.


Fruit will be ready about three months after transplanting. Cut the fruit off. It has a strong stem and twisting or pulling could damage the plant. Eat as soon as possible after harvesting because they don’t keep well. In hotter, frost-free areas, cut back plants after the first fruiting to encourage a second harvest.


Cutworms love young eggplant seedlings, so protect accordingly. Adult plants could also be attacked by spider mite (look for the top leaves turning yellow) and leaf beetles, which eat the leaves, leaving them in lacy tatters. Marigolds repel beetles and scented geranium repels spider mites.

Planting and Harvesting Calendar

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Pests which Affect Aubergine

Plant Diseases which Affect Aubergine