eggplant male / female flowers ?

greenthumbsjJune 17, 2008

I have about a dozen of the purple Japanese variety(forgot the name). My plants look healthy and are around 12" tall. There are 3 small eggplants about the size of a quarter and doing fine. However, I noticed in some plants there are cluster of flower buds in one stem - they are much smaller and are mostly a group of 3 in one stem. I don't recall seeing more than one eggplant hanging off of a single stem. Are these male flowers or flowers that won't produce ? Should I clip them ?

thanks

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wild_forager

Sometimes they just form flowers in clusters. It's normal, not a male/female difference. Usually eggplants will form a single flower, or a cluster of up to 8, depending on the variety.

    Bookmark   June 17, 2008 at 2:43PM
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opal52(z7b GA)

I'm growing Rosa Bianca Eggplant and it is same as you describe. Single large blossoms on a strong stem, and some clusters of three smaller blossoms on small stems away from the main stalk. Now I thought the larger blossoms were female, and that the cluster of smaller blossoms were male. And I thought the male flowers were necessary to pollinate the females. The bees are visiting the eggplants now so I don't worry, but early on I hand pollinated some of the blossoms, or at least I thought I did. Anyway, the larger blossoms I thought I pollinated have medium size eggplants now. I did notice something else interesting. When I brushed the female plants, I could see a little puff of what looked like very fine powder. (I'm not making this up...)

Hope someone can tell me if what I did was unnecessary. Do eggplants not require male/female blossoms for pollination?

    Bookmark   June 17, 2008 at 4:05PM
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farmerdilla

Eggplants are like tomatoes self-fertile. Flowers have both male and female parts. Bees when plentiful will work the flowers, but the plants don't need them.

    Bookmark   June 17, 2008 at 6:31PM
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opal52(z7b GA)

Farmerdilla, thanks for the info. I feel a little silly now, but apparently I didn't harm the early blossoms.

Greenthumbsj, It was not my intention to hijack this thread. I apologize for jumping in.

    Bookmark   June 18, 2008 at 11:25AM
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greenthumbsj

opal52, no worries. I learned more because of your input. I am all for more input.

    Bookmark   June 18, 2008 at 2:57PM
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