24 January 2012

Help Wanted: Mystery Eggplant

Call them Aubergine. Call them Brinjal. Call them Eggfruit. Call them anything you like, but I love Eggplant. Especially when they're from my own garden! Organically grown, they just taste hugely better than shop-bought.

This year I have 3 varieties growing. Or maybe more... (and that's where I need your help!)

I planted Black Beauty (common locally), Japanese White (which I've grown before and loved) and (new to me) Korean Long Black. The Korean Black has been a start performer. By far the earliest, and really trouble-free. We had the first pickings for supper the other night, and the flavour is beyond my abilities to describe. I don't believe I've ever tasted another Eggplant that can compare!

Trouble is, there's a Fly In The Soup. A couple of the "Korean Black" plants are clearly not. Korean Black, that is. Even quite early in their growth it was apparent that they were not true to type, lacking the darkness of stem and leaf that the rest of their bed-fellows show.

So here presented, for your delectation and my edification, some rogue Eggplants. The seed all came from the same packet as the Korean Black, so I guess there was a mixup by whoever packed the seed for Baker Creek Seeds (the supplier I bought them off). Not a problem for me - I'm equally happy to have some new varieties, even if I don't know just what they are. They may or may not be the same variety, these two rogues. Your guess as good as mine.

There is, of course, a chance that they may have cross-pollinated with the surrounding Korean Blacks, but hey... life's full of random! So I'll be saving their seed separately towards the end of the season (all gods willing!)

Can't wait to taste them!

But if any of you, Dear Readers, are able to put a name to them, please, please drop me a line and let them know.

It's a funny thing... many gardeners are pretty casual about the names of varieties and will casually call a variety something new. Me, I like to honour the gardener who first bred the variety by trying - as best I can - to keep the name given it by that gardener, though they may be a thousand years passed-on!

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