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Perennial Eggplant Trees?

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Perennial Eggplant Trees?

Post  dstack on 8/15/2014, 8:04 am

In researching nematode resistant rootstock for my nightshades I came across this. You can use a close relative to eggplant called turkey berry (solanum torvum) as rootstock for eggplants. Their roots are nematode resistant and with vigorous grown. This permaculture farmer in Hawaii says that his is at least three years old and about 6' tall!  I've found many sources to back the use of this plant for eggplant rootstock. I can't wait to try this!  Of course that'll have to be out of the box. At least I'll have more room in my nightshade box for tomatoes and peppers. Check out what the Hawaiian farmer says about this... 


http://www.kumuainafarm.com/hello-perennial-eggplant-tree/
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Re: Perennial Eggplant Trees?

Post  yolos on 8/15/2014, 8:32 am

Hmm, very interesting.  I assume it could only be grown where it does not freeze.?
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Re: Perennial Eggplant Trees?

Post  sanderson on 8/15/2014, 10:07 am

dstack, Sounds worth a try down there. I like little asian eggplants better than Black Beauty.
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Re: Perennial Eggplant Trees?

Post  dstack on 8/15/2014, 10:25 am

I want to try it with Rosa Biancas. They're not so big that weight would be an issue.

Considering how much information there is on the web about using turkey berry as root stock, I'm amazed at how difficult it is to find seeds. It grows like weeds in Hawaii, but I only found a vendor through eBay in Thailand!
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Re: Perennial Eggplant Trees?

Post  sanderson on 8/15/2014, 11:05 am

Maybe there is a reason why it is hard to find for the US. Any quarantine on importing it?
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Re: Perennial Eggplant Trees?

Post  dstack on 8/15/2014, 12:10 pm

@sanderson wrote:Maybe there is a reason why it is hard to find for the US.  Any quarantine on importing it?
I've read that it grows in Puerto Rico and other parts of North America. The Hawaiian farmer told me about the restrictions in their exports from Hawaii, and that why they don't know anyone who sells it out of the state. So I'm not aware of any other restrictions.
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Re: Perennial Eggplant Trees?

Post  dstack on 8/15/2014, 12:19 pm

As a side note, I admire the permaculture lifestyle of this Hawaiian farm.
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Re: Perennial Eggplant Trees?

Post  Marc Iverson on 8/15/2014, 1:54 pm

How cool. I had never known eggplant was a perennial in some places. I was surprised when I found that out about basil, too, and read of people overwintering peppers and tomatoes. It's funny that they get described as annuals merely because of where the people live who do the classifying.
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Re: Perennial Eggplant Trees?

Post  audrey.jeanne.roberts on 8/15/2014, 2:42 pm

I have a Japanese eggplant that overwintered in my green house and is still producing as well as it's black beauty cousin that almost died but is coming back strong and putting out flowers right now.  

So even the basic plants can grow on in the right environment!
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Re: Perennial Eggplant Trees?

Post  dstack on 8/15/2014, 3:30 pm

@Marc Iverson wrote:How cool.  I had never known eggplant was a perennial in some places.  I was surprised when I found that out about basil, too, and read of people overwintering peppers and tomatoes.  It's funny that they get described as annuals merely because of where the people live who do the classifying.
I agree that this is VERY cool! However, personally I've not had that luck with basil. Mine always fizzles out after a season or two.
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Re: Perennial Eggplant Trees?

Post  Marc Iverson on 8/15/2014, 3:44 pm

Nice that you could get it to last more than a single season. Basil is one of my favorite plants. Around here, though, it's quickly winter-killed, and we don't have a big sunny window inside that it's appropriate to put a planter in.

My neighbor told me he built his house, though, with the idea of overwintering summer vegetables in mind. He has a big south-facing room full of windows, and grows tomatoes there all year long. When it got to 8 degrees here last winter ... he was still picking tomatoes!
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Seeds ordered

Post  dstack on 8/15/2014, 9:39 pm

I just ordered my turkey berry seeds. I also found these seeds for sale in Australia but the total price with shipping was only $4.90 from Thailand vs. $8+ from Australia.

Did I mention that I'm excited about this? LOL

Also, the graft used to do this is the veneer graft, which is what I successfully used on my mango tree. I'm fully embracing the fact that I'm in a tropical climate with pineapples (not fruiting yet), a mango tree (not fruiting yet), papayas, passion fruit (not fruiting yet) and soon... turkey berry/eggplant trees!  Very Happy 
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