How to Manage Pests

Pests in Gardens and Landscapes

Time to plant

Eggplant require warm temperatures for optimum growth and fruit development. A long growing season of 70 to 120 days, depending upon the variety, is required for transplanted crops. The ideal daytime temperatures should be in the range 80° to 90° F and night time temperatures should not go below 60° to 65° F. Eggplant is intolerant of frost, and growth will be significantly retarded if night temperatures are below 60° F. Once plants reach the flowering stage, low temperatures and low-intensity light will cause pollen to be nonviable and fruit will likely not set.

Peppers prefer slightly cooler temperatures than do eggplants. Peppers do best with daytime temperatures of 75° to 85° F and night time temperatures of 55° to 65° F. The ideal temperature for direct seeding is 77° F or above. Peppers are intolerant of frost and temperatures above 100° F will reduce pollination, fruit set, and yield.

Peppers and eggplants are suitable for a small garden if compact varieties are grown.

Planting Dates for Peppers and Eggplants*

CALIFORNIA Direct seed or transplant

North and North Coast
Monterey County north

South Coast
San Luis Obispo County south

May

April–May

Interior Valleys
Sacramento, San Joaquin valleys

Desert Valleys
Imperial and Coachella valleys

March–June
(earlier under hot caps)

March

*Transplants may be started indoors from seed 4 to 6 weeks before the last frost date.
Areas are large, so planting dates are only approximate, as the climate may vary even in small sections of the state. Contact experienced gardeners in your community and experiment on your own to find more precise dates.


Statewide IPM Program, Agriculture and Natural Resources, University of California
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