How to Protect Eggplants During the Winter

Despite their tropical heritage, eggplants are not climatized to harsh winter weather. They need a long growing season and heat. The cold temperatures will slow down growth and stop fruit production. However, if eggplants are protected properly, they can still produce fruit during the winter. If you have an eggplant greenhouse, you can keep your plants warm all year round. Similarly, eggplants in pots can be brought indoors in the winter. But they still need to be watered.

During the winter season, eggplants grow slower than tomatoes. They are also prone to pests, diseases and pesticides. When temperatures drop below 60 degrees Fahrenheit, eggplants will abort immature fruit. They also drop their flowers and may begin to produce extra flowers. If you are worried about this, you can protect the eggplant plants with a frost blanket or tarp.

Eggplants grow best in warm, sunny areas. You can keep your eggplant in a sunny part of your garden or greenhouse. But if your garden or greenhouse does not receive enough sunlight, you can grow them in pots. Pots should be large enough to allow for good root development. They should also be placed in a sheltered area of your garden. It is also important to provide mulch to keep weeds down.

Eggplants should be planted in soil that is around 70 degrees Fahrenheit. You can also plant eggplant seedlings outdoors in midsummer for a fall crop. If you live in a colder climate, you can plant your eggplant seedlings indoors at least 6-8 weeks before the last spring frost.

When the temperatures get below 70 degrees, eggplants may need to be planted in a greenhouse. You can also purchase eggplant transplants. They are available at local plant nurseries. You should also wait for the soil temperature to rise to about 70 degrees before planting them. You may also consider using row covers. These will keep the plants warm during the day and help to reduce disease. However, row covers will interfere with pollination. You can also tie eggplant plants to a pole in the field. This will keep the plant upright and promote fruit growth.

You can also protect eggplants with floating row fabric. These covers can be removed when daytime temperatures reach 85 degrees Fahrenheit. However, you should avoid floating row fabric for eggplants if you are attempting to produce flowers. The floating row fabric can also interfere with pollination.

During the winter season, you can also harvest your eggplants. You can do so by cutting the eggplant near the stem. This will prevent the eggplant from falling over when it is laden with fruit. However, you should practice picking eggplants before you begin harvesting. You can also use a sharp knife to cut eggplants. If you use a knife, you should cut the eggplant near the stem instead of near the crotch. This will also allow you to avoid damaging the skin of the eggplant. You should always check the moisture in the soil before watering. Watering too much can cause root rot.

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