Shoot and Fruit Borer (Leucinodes orbonalis):
Shoot and fruit borer cause a serious damage to the fruits leading to severe reduction in the yield. The damage to the fruits starts soon after transplanting and continues till harvest of the fruits. The adult female lays eggs on the ventral surface of the leaves, flower buds and on young fruits. Short pinkish larva of the pest initially bore into the terminal shoots resulting in withering and drying of the shoot. In the later stage, it bores into the young fruits by making holes and feeds inside which makes the fruits unfit for consumption. Such fruits rot in severe case. Control: Continuous cropping of brinjal on the same piece of land should be avoided. As soon as the insect is detected, the affected parts should be clipped along with the insect and destroyed. Fruits showing any boring should be picked and destroyed. Spraying the crops with Carbaryl (0.1%) or Cypermethrin (0.5ml/litre of water) at fortnightly intervals starting from 35 days after transplanting controls the pest. Best results are obtained when all the affected fruits are removed before spraying.
Leaf Eating Beetle (Epilachana vigintioctopunctata):
The yellowish colored grubs and adults feed voraciously on the leaves and tender parts of the plant and often cause serious damage when they appear in numbers. As a result, the leaves are completely skeletonized leaving only a network of veins. Control: Collection and destruction of infested leaves along with the grubs, adult and eggs reduces the pest incidence. Spraying the crop with Malathion (2ml/liter of water) or Carbaryl (2-4 g/liter of water) effectively controls the pest.
Hassid (Amrasca biguttula biguttula, Cestius (Hishimonus) phycitis):
Both nymphs and adults suck the sap from the lower surface of the leaves. The infested leaf curl upward along the margins, which may turn yellowish and show, burnt up patches. They also transit mycoplasma disease like little leaf and virus disease like mosaic. Fruit setting is adversely affected by the infestation. Control: Jassids are controlled by spraying Malathion (0.1%) or Dichlorvos (0.05%) 20 days after transplanting.
Leaf Roller (Eublemma olivacea):
Caterpillars roll leaves and feed on chlorophyll while remaining inside the folds. The folded leaves wither and dry up. Control: Collection and destruction of infested leaves along with insects in the initial stage help to minimize the infestation. Spraying of Carbaryl (0.1%) or Malathion (0.05%) controls the pest effectively.
RedSpidermite (Tetranychus neocaledonicus, Tetranychus cinnabarinus, Paratetranychus indicus):
The mite is a pest of brinjal. Low relative humidity favors mite multiplication. Different stages of mites are found in colonies covered by white-silky webs on lower surface of leaves. Nymphs and adults suck cell sap and white patches appear on leaves. Affected leaves become mottled, turn brown and fall. Control: During egg stage and the resting stages, most matricides are ineffective. At high temperatures, it may be necessary to apply these at an interval of two days. Acaricides like Dicofol (0.05%) and Wettable Sulphur (0.3%) gives effective control of mites. Collection and burning of severely infested plant parts reduces further multiplication of mites. Proper irrigation and clean cultivation are essential to keep the pest population under control.
Mealy Bug (Centrocccus insolitus):
Nymphs and adults of mealy bugs suck sap from the leaves, tender shoots, and the fruits. Leaves show characteristic curling symptoms similar to that of a virus. A heavy black sooty mould may develop on the honeydew like droplets secreted by mealy bugs. If the flower blooms are attacked, the fruit set is affected. When the fruits are infested, they can be entirely covered with the mealy bug. The infestation may lead to fruit drop or the fruits remain on the shoots in a dried and shriveled condition. Control: Unlike the adults, the crawlers are free from waxy coating and therefore the crawler stage is the most effective for spraying pesticides. Spraying of insecticides like Dichlorvos (0.02%) or Chlorpyriphos (0.05%) with fish oil rosin soap was found to control the insect population.
Lace Wing Bug (Urentius hystricellus): This is a specific pest of brinjal mostly attacking in the summer season. Nymphs and dark brown bugs with lace like wings suck the sap from leaves, which turn yellowish and are found covered with insect excreta. Affected leaves ultimately dry up. Control: Proper crop rotation and spraying with Phosphamidon (0.03%) help in the reduction of the pest population.
Root-Knot Nematodes (Meloidogyne incognita and Meloidogyne javanica):
The root-knot nematode damage is more harmful to seedlings than to older plants. The affected plants show the development of galls on the roots. The plants become stunted and the leaves show chlorotic symptoms. Fruiting is adversely affected. Control: Crop rotation with root knot nematode resistant crops like marigold etc. help in the reduction of nematode population. Treating the nursery beds with Aldicarb or Carbofuran @ 2g 2 a.i./m is effective in increasing the seedling growth and reducing the nematode population. Application of Aldicarb or Carbofuran @1-2 kg a.i. /ha effectively reduces the nematode population in the field
Manuring & Fertilization:
The fertilizer dose depends upon the fertility of soil and amount of organic manure applied to the crop. For a good yield, 15-20 tones of well-decomposed FYM is incorporated into the soil. Generally, application of 150 kg N, 100 kg P O and 50 kg K O is recommended for optimum yield. Half dose of N 25 2 and full dose of P and K is given at the time of planting. The balance half of N is given in 3 equal split doses. The first split dose is given one and half month after transplanting, the second dose one month after the first application and the final at three and half months after transplanting.
For hybrid varieties, the recommended dose is 200 kg N, 100 kg P O and 100 Kg K O. Out of this dose, 25 2 25 % of N and 100 % of P & K is applied as basal dose. Remaining 75 % of P is applied in three equal split doses. The first split dose of N is applies 20 days after transplanting. The second dose is given just before the onset of flowering while the third after the first picking/harvesting.
Continuous supply of moisture should be maintained around the root zone of the plant. A light irrigation is given on the first and third day after transplanting. Thereafter irrigation is given at an interval of 8-10 days during winter and 5-6 days during summer.
The fruits become ready for first picking in about 120-130 days of seed sowing depending on the variety. The harvesting of the fruits should be done as soon as it attains a good size and color. Fruits are harvested when they become greenish yellow or bronze and their flesh turns dry and tough. Pressing the thumb against the side of the fruit can indicate the maturity of the fruit. If the pressed portion springs back to its original shape, the fruit is too immature. Some portion of the calyx and the stem-end is retained on the fruit during harvesting. Since all the fruits do not mature at the same time, the fruits are harvested at an interval of 8-10 days.
Yield Depending on variety and season the average yield of brinjal varies from 20-30 t/ha.