How To Grow Aubergines
Growing aubergines in the UK, especially outdoors, can be tricky due to the cold weather. But this video features a gardening expert explaining how to plant and grow fresh aubergines in the UK.
Growing aubergines is not as simple as growing tomatoes, whatever the books and seed catalogues might tell you. It is very hard to grow aubergines outside in the UK without protection unless we have an extremely hot summer. Aubergines require significantly warmer conditions than tomatoes.
To grow aubergines outdoors in the UK, even in the south, you need a sheltered position and some form of protection to get them off to a good start. They also need protecting outside from the wind. You can grow them in an unheated greenhouse, though.
I have grown them outside with mild success in an extremely hot summer. You will get three, maybe four fruits from indoor plants, and less if you grow them outside. Sow seeds in a propagator in March or in a cold greenhouse in April.
Pot them on into three-inch pots when they are large enough to handle. When the plants have four leaves, harden them off; that means getting them used gradually to the outdoor conditions, and plant into their permanent positions. You can plant the aubergines in pots, but use a pot that is a minimum of twenty centimeters in diameter.
You can plant them in the garden or in grow bags. Put two in each grow bag. Outdoor plants should be spaced forty centimeters apart.
Cover up the outdoor plants with cloches or fleece, and pinch out the growing tips on the plants when the plants reach about thirty centimeters in height. Stake and tie the plants in as needed. Feed them using a tomato food each time you water them once the fruit starts to swell.
Water regularly, but do not keep the compost too wet. Limit the plant to five or six fruits per plant. If you finely spray the plants with water, this will help encourage the fruit to set.
Ensure that indoor plants do not dry out. Otherwise, you will get something called blossom end rot, which damages the fruit. Continue to tie in, feed, and water the plants until the first fruits are ready in late August or September.
Cut the fruits as needed once they have reached a good size and color, but before the shine disappears from the skin. And that is how you grow tasty home grown aubergines. .