Another step in my attempt to breed an northern outdoor eggplant
Today was the day. I think eggplants development in the garden has come to a halt now that autumn is cooling the garden down. I took the scissors, and cut all the plants off the root. I had plants scattered across the bed, but could now dig the labels out of the ground by each plant, and sort according to their parents in the last generation. It gives me an idea ofthe value of parental plants in breeding – it is what Carol Deppe call “Power Breeding”.
To get an idea of What it would be without power breeding, imagine what it would look like if I had simply mixed the plants as they stood in the garden, without sorting according to parental plants.
Mother plant to Rima F3 No.1 in its time hurried into setting a tiny eggplant, which was so early that the mature seeds rotted and dried up, while the other plants were still struggling to set fruits. This year, the plant to the right is especially interesting because it has set 4 big beautiful fruits in the open ground. My concrete tile measures 40x40cm for comparison (40 cm = 15.7 in).
Mother plant to Rima F3 No.2 is certainly not to rely on. One plant put a small eggplant, another nothing at all! No need to dig into the seed bag a second time, practising Power Breeding!
Mother plant to Rima F3 No.3 in turn has potential, and it is hereditary! All the plants set fruit, almost all up in the attractive size. 3 out of 7 plants set the abundant fruits in big size!
A favourite seed bag found. Hope I get seeds out of just some of the fruits.
This I grew a lot of last year as the mother plant had such a great fruit. Last year, it produced no fruits, when several of the others produced some fruits, however, no seeds. For this reason it is not my favourite line (Power Breeding again), but since I do not want to risk losing potential seed, I still saved the biggest fruits for ripening the seeds – imagine if it were the only ones who make seeds this year!
Eventually there were all those lovely, shiny aubergines with no chance to mature seeds. They will be cooked in the kitchen and enjoyed in meals the next days. My dream is that most of my eggplants can go into the kitchen. But as long as the plant breeding work need to be consolidated, I mainly try to save seeds.