Tips to Growing Black Bell Eggplant
Black Bell is a hybrid eggplant that is similar to Black Beauty Eggplant – the heirloom.
Black Bell was bred for better disease resistance and as an added benefit it produces slightly earlier. It’s appearance, taste and texture is also very similar – although not 100% identical to its cousin Black Beauty.
It is resistant to Tobacco mosaic virus and Tomato Mosaic Virus, which are fairly common issues with all nightshade plants, which includes eggplants as well as tomatoes and peppers.
Start seeds indoors 6 – 8 weeks before planting outdoors.
Maturity at 58- 72 days from transplant.
Germination from seed 10 – 14 days.
Color – Black / Purple
Average Plant Height – 3 to 4 feet tall
Spacing – 24-36 inches
Spread – 12-16 inches
USDA Hardiness Zones 5 – 11
Fruit Size Up to 8 inches long
Above Average Yields – * Stake the plant early in the season to support the full weight
Eggplant grows best in a well-drained sandy loam or loam soil, fairly high in organic matter. Start early indoors in peat pots or cell packs
Rows should be 3 to 5 ft. apart. Plants should be 2 to 3 ft. apart, Transplants should be about 6 weeks old and slightly hardened, grown in 2 inch or larger pots.
All eggplant varieties are highly susceptible to Flea Beetles attack particularly early in the season. Aphids also attack these plants and come later in the season. Varieties of Aphids that attack eggplants are generally either a light blue-green or amber, sometimes black.
The outdoor environment can be very harsh for a transplant. So, harden the transplants before planting outdoors to increase their survival rate. Place them outdoors in their original containers where they will receive direct sunlight and some wind for a few hours each day for a week, possibly more.. Gradually lengthen the amount of time outside each day. Move the plants inside at night.