For several years I didn’t bother growing eggplant. My lack of attempt was purely based on no interest and I thought southern gardeners would reap its fruits more successfully than I would. Then one day my husband suggested we try planting it, for we had nothing to lose. At my other house the soil was nothing to be desired, a rocky soil with weak topsoil, needing a revamp. We did have a nice garden but not the best for eggplant. Although we had this negative downfall, we chose young eggplant seedlings and tenderly positioned them in the family plot. I watered them, watched the sisters with a keen eye and prayed to the cultivation heavens for success. Looking back, that first year proved to be a disaster and for some odd reason the veggies that did make it were bitter. Maybe it was the soil or they were too ripe? I’m not sure but there’s more to this story…
Every year we have grown eggplant since, with our mouth watering visions of eggplant parmesan and fried eggplant with marinara sauce. Even our son, who can be a picky eater, likes it. So every year we are happy with settling for three or four nice deep purple eggplants, cut from the vine and carried proudly to our kitchen for preparation.
Last year was a record breaker, a year of magical outcomes and everything in the universe was lined up to harvest eggplant! With hopeful hearts,we planted a row of five in June. As other years, it started out slow and we were resigned to settle on a handful. Then it happened! It seemed like overnight and the plants flourished and powered up, reaching with a healthy stretch to the sky! The roots were firm leading to a strong trunk, with a hearty strength unheard of! Unbelievably we harvested too many to count. At last tally, twenty rich and purple amazing fruits lined our wooden bar. I made several eggplant meals, trying to change it up every sitting and gave away many. It resembled a zucchini harvest, when you give away many to total strangers, leave them on empty porches and convince family that they need more.
The rich vivacious eggplant season ended as the hearty plants started to die. Their leaves withered and drooped, as I graciously thanked them for their harvest. With our tummies full of its delicious taste, we relished in gardening success. I had taken pictures for posterity and all that was left to be done was to rip the dying plants from the ground. Tossing them into the heaping compost pile, I vowed to remember the marathon of the eggplant.
Cautiously I plan on reproducing last years crop. Not only was it a record breaker, but a sure sign that everything has its season and 2015 was my eggplants year! To my fellow gardeners, may your eggplant harvest be as rich and fulfilling this year!
All my Best,
Heart and Soul ❤️