Whether you are growing an eggplant for personal use or for selling, there are a number of reasons why your eggplant may not fruit. Some of these reasons include poor pollination, inadequate sunlight, lack of water, pests and diseases, and more. If you think your plant is suffering from one of these problems, you should consult a Master Gardener or your local extension office. The right diagnosis can help you ensure a healthy and abundant harvest of eggplants.
The first reason your eggplant may not fruit is because the plant is not getting enough light. It needs about six to eight hours of direct sunlight per day. The weather also plays a role in how quickly the plant produces fruits. If the weather is too hot or cold, the plant will not flower and will likely drop its flowers. In a warm climate, you may need to add shade cloth to your garden to protect the eggplant from the heat.
The second reason your eggplant may not fruit is due to insect infestations. These insects eat the sap from the plant and can cause it to lose its ability to photosynthesize correctly. Aphids are one of the most common pests. They can also cause your eggplant to produce sticky honeydew. If you see these insects on your eggplant, it is important to treat them immediately.
If you are experiencing problems with your eggplant, you should check out online diagnostic tools and your local extension office. You may need to remove and destroy the affected plant. However, you should always try to encourage natural pollinators. There are a number of plants that are attractive to bees, such as sunflowers and marigolds. Borage and daisies are also good options.
Aside from watering your eggplants, you may also need to add phosphorus to the soil. If the soil is not phosphorus-rich, the eggplant will not produce flowers. You can add ammonium phosphate to the soil around the plant to make the phosphorus available for blossom production.
You should also check for diseases, such as fusarium wilt. This fungus can cause brown leaves and can also spread to the roots. If your eggplants have brown or yellow leaves, they may be afflicted with fusarium wilt. Adding mulch around the plant will help keep the soil moist and prevent damage on hot days. You may also need to apply a spray of water in the saucer to promote fruit development.
You may also need to add more nitrogen to the soil if the plant is not getting enough water. The excess nitrogen can cause the plant to grow taller and produce leaves that are abnormally large. This can also cause the eggplant to drop its flowers.
You may also need to consider planting an eggplant outside of its growing season. Some varieties, such as the Millionaire, are bush eggplants. These are easier to grow and produce fruits quicker. However, they should not be planted outdoors until the ground has warmed up.