How to prune eggplant (Cut back pruning for eggplant) and thinning okra – Eggplant and okra care

How to prune eggplant (Cut back pruning for eggplant) and thinning okra

How to grow eggplant in rental patch. This time, I will handle eggplant and okra care. (Eggplant and okra growing guide.) First, let’s take care of the eggplant. The eggplant grown outdoors have grown tall, so it’s time for pruning soon. I’m still a beginner at growing eggplant, and I don’t really understand how to prune them, but I’d like to give it a try.

The eggplant (also called aubergine and brinjal) is ready for pruning

How to prune eggplant (Cut back pruning for eggplant)

The eggplant (japanese eggplant) has been grown in a “double-stakes (double-stems)" method so far. Before I knew it, another side shoot (sucker) of the eggplant had grown, making it a “triple-stems".

The eggplant (japanese eggplant) is trained with triple stems

Double-stemmed eggplant refers to a cultivation method where the main stem at the center of the eggplant plant and one vigorously growing side shoot (sucker) are nurtured to grow long. By adding another side shoot to this, it becomes a triple-stemmed eggplant.

If we keep harvesting without controlling the growth of branches, the eggplant plants will become exhausted and enter a state of “overbearing fatigue". (For eggplants, producing flowers and fruits requires energy, so if there are many fruits on the plant, it will consume energy and become exhausted.)

When eggplants become overbearing, they lose their energy

This bed where eggplant, ginger, and sweet pepper are grown will continue to produce harvests until around mid-September if cultivation goes well. Having a long harvesting period for eggplants means it’s important to minimize “overbearing fatigue" as much as possible.

Eggplant, ginger, and green pepper continue to be harvested until autumn

To grow eggplants for a long time, you need to regularly fertilize to replenish nutrients. (Best way to grow eggplant.)

To prevent overbearing fatigue in eggplants and enjoy a longer harvesting period, pruning of branches is necessary. (Pruning eggplants refreshes the plant by renewing its branches.)

Where to cut when pruning eggplants?

There are several ways to prune eggplants, but in our field, we do “cut back pruning". It’s a pruning method called “one sucker, one eggplant" where one fruit is left per sucker of the eggplant. With the “one sucker, one eggplant" pruning method, you can prevent overbearing fatigue in eggplants and continue harvesting for a longer period.

Prune eggplants to have one fruit per branch

The important points of this pruning method are “not cutting the 2 thick stems (main stem and 1 thick sucker) of the double-stemmed structure" and “leaving 2-3 leaves above the eggplant fruit". Leaving eggplant leaves serves to enlarge the fruit. (The remaining leaves act as pumps, delivering nutrients to the eggplant fruit.)

How to prune eggplants

Pruning eggplants to “one sucker, one eggplant" sounds simple in theory, but it might be challenging for beginners in eggplant cultivation. Even I get confused about which ones to cut when I look at my eggplant plants.

I'm confused about which branches to cut during pruning

For now, I’ve pruned it as best as I could. Pruning eggplants takes practice. With more experience, I believe I’ll be able to prune smoothly.

Eggplant (Japanese eggplant) pruning completed

Thinning okra plants (How to grow okra)

After pruning eggplants, it’s time to take care of the okra. Okra planted about 25 days ago. True leaves are fully grown and growing vigorously.

Okra seeds
Okra is growing well

I planted okra seeds in early June. (Growing okra from seed.)

The okra has good germination rate and is growing well. As the leaves are becoming crowded, it’s time for thinning. Okra thinning means keeping three plants per hole in the mulch.

Thin the okra to three plants
Okra thinning done

This finishes trimming the eggplant (Cut back pruning for eggplant) and thinning the okra. While pruning the eggplants, I also harvested sweet peppers and cucumber.

This harvest

Following is the video for how-to. English subtitles are available.

How to prune eggplant (Cut back pruning for eggplant) and thinning okra – Eggplant and okra care – YouTube