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Eggplant Picking / Packing

Known for many names – Aubergine in British English, Brinjal in South Asia, Southeast Asia and South Africa, Garden egg, melongene or guinea squash – Eggplant is a flowering plant, which is originated from the family of Solanaceae or Nightshades that has a notable contribution and is widely used for cooking variety of dishes.

The long-established eggplant that most people know is the large glossy dark egg-shaped fruit; however, most farms are able to propagate different variety or hybrid of eggplants – from smaller eggplants to white colored eggplants and even cylindrical eggplants. Commercial Eggplants or those that are mostly being sold in the local markets are normally harvested in Queensland and Western Australia. Here are some numerous varieties of eggplants that are being grown and harvested in some farms in Australia:

Eggplant Black Beauty (Black Bell) – a glossy dark purple beauty that’s rich in flavor.
Golden Egg Eggplant – a round golden yellow egg-shaped eggplant that is known to be very tasty especially before its fruit turns to yellow. This is one of the main eggplant variety that is being grown and harvested for Australian market.

Early Long Purple Eggplant – these varieties has the same glossy dark purple color like Black Beauty though they are only longer and slender. They are often produced in cooler areas and is normally best harvested at 20cm by 5cm size.
Little Finger Eggplant (Baby Finger) – these variety, also called as Mini Bunching, has a similar appearance with the early long purple eggplant, although, they are much easier to pick and are known to be spineless. They are also fitting to grow in hot and humid conditions. This is another eggplant variety that are being grown in Sydney for commercial market.
Greek Eggplant – these are cylindrical-shaped light purple eggplant that normally grows between 22cm to 24cm long.
Ping Tung Long Eggplant – these shiny and slender dark lavender varieties originated in Taiwan. It has a sweet taste and does not need to be peeled. These varieties can be grown in either cooler climates or hot or humid growing conditions.
Rosa Bianca Eggplant – It is a two-toned soft lavender and white shade pear-shaped eggplant that was originally being grown in Italy. This variety has a rich creamy taste and is normally 10-15cm in length size.

Eggplant season in Australia is from December through May or from summer to autumn, and depending on its variety, Eggplants may take 60-90 days before you can harvest their fruits. Most eggplant varieties are best grown in warm and humid areas as they really love to feel the warmth of the sun and well drained soil-manured beds. Good thing in planting eggplant is that, it can grow in the same manured bed where you plant your Beans, Lettuce, Capsicum, Amaranth and Thyme while it can never be compatible growing with Potatoes.

Just like other vegetable and fruit picking jobs, Eggplant picking job is a known way for backpackers to extend their stay in Australia. Backpackers get to earn cash and support their finances in picking Eggplants while travelling in Australia, though, please take note that this kind of job requires backpackers to be physically fit. If you wish to work as an eggplant picker, pay rates depends whether you opt for per piece rate or per hour rate.