Truly a diminutive eggplant, Ophelia is a great variety for smaller spaces. It also does well in a regular vegetable garden bed, but if you’re tight on space or only have a patio with containers for growing vegetables, try this eggplant. The fruits are egg sized and the entire plants are compact as well.
What is an Ophelia Eggplant?
Ophelia is an eggplant variety that grows into small plants and diminutive fruits, only about two ounces (57 grams) each. The eggplants grow in clusters like tomatoes and are deep purple and egg shaped. The flowers are lavender and white stunners, and they add to the ornamental look of this plant.
The taste and texture of Ophelia eggplants are of good quality. They are tender and not bitter. You can use them as you would other types of eggplant: roasted, in casseroles, baked, or stir fried. The small slices you get from these tiny eggplants make them great for appetizers too.
Growing an Ophelia Eggplant in the Garden
With some basic Ophelia eggplant information, you can easily grow this little gem in your vegetable garden. The plants will only grow to about 24 inches (60 cm.) in height, so consider this variety for a container garden. Just be sure that the container is big enough; although small, these plants need some room to stretch.
Give your Ophelia eggplants 50 to 55 days to get to maturity. The seeds take just five to ten days to germinate. Provide your seedlings with rich soil that drains well, whether in a bed or container. Thin them until the plants are spaced about 18 inches (46 cm.) apart.
These plants do best in warm conditions, so don’t put outside until low temperatures are at least 50 degrees Fahrenheit (10 Celsius). It can help to harden them off indoors by transitioning seedlings to lower and lower temperatures. Use a little fertilizer every couple of weeks as your plants grow and keep them well watered.
Your little eggplants will be ready to harvest when they are egg sized and deep purple with shiny, smooth skin. If the skin starts to wrinkle or get soft, they are over ripe. You can store your eggplants once harvested for a week or ten days. Expect to get a big yield from this prolific variety of eggplant.