For those who have been members of our CSA for the last two years: Yes, you are seeing more eggplant this year.
For those who are new this year: Yes, there are more eggplant than there has been in prior years.
First things first - last year was a particularly dismal year for crops such as...well...eggplant. And, this year is actually, in our minds, more of a normal eggplant harvest level. And perhaps, a bit better than most years.
We just picked our 1500th eggplant for the season. No, I didn't make a typo there. If you want to celebrate - have some eggplant parmesan or ratatouille.
For those who care or may have a slight interest. Here are some production facts at GFF. Note that we increased the number of plants between 2006 and 2007, but have held relatively steady since. We *did* increase plants this year because we didn't want to kill a bunch that didn't sell. However, they haven't really figured in the production.
Year weeks total production
2006 12 792
2007 14 1474
2008 11 417
2009 9* 1502*
* season not completed
A typical year finds the first harvestable eggplant around July 27. We start our peak mid-August and will run at peak until first frost. If plants are covered during a frost and temperatures rebound (as they tend to do for a week or two in Iowa) plants will recover and have a 'mini-peak' before a killing freeze (or the farmer/gardener declares an end to the season).