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Ai Qua, Ai Gua Long Purple Eggplant

Posted by californian 10 (My Page) on
Thu, Feb 25, 10 at 21:03

I bought a pack of Botanical Interests Japanese/Chinese eggplant seeds. I was wondering if they are some generic seeds or is Ai Qua/Ai Gua a specific named variety. Is the Long Purple a variety or are they just saying the eggplant is long and a purple color? Has anyone ever tried this brand and variety and is it any good?

Follow-Up Postings:

RE: Ai Qua, Ai Gua Long Purple Eggplant

Long Purple is a cultivar. There are several versions. Eggplant has many names in other cultures Eggfruit, Brinjal , Brinjaul, Aubergine, Chinese Eggplant, Japanese Eggplant, Ngai Kwa, Qie Zi, Hon Pee Choi, Chan Che Zu, Ai Qwa.

RE: Ai Qua, Ai Gua Long Purple Eggplant

I did a little more research and get so much conflicting information. Some websites say it is an Italian heirloom, some an American Heirloom from the 1850s, and some say it is an Asian type eggplant from India. Oh, and that should have been Ai Qwa, not Ai Qua. What I was hoping this was was the kind of eggplant they eat in Korea, not the thick skinned bitter European type.

RE: Ai Qua, Ai Gua Long Purple Eggplant

Californian, LONG PURPLE is a description, not a name.

Chinese/Japanes egplants are similar. Chinese are vey light purple, Japanese are vey dark , like traditional Italian. But these eggplants are slim and long, about 8" average, up to 12", and about 2" in diameter. I had some last year. And I have started some seeds already. Last year I direct sowed (a mistake) It took long time to germinate but I managde to get good crop till mid November.

RE: Ai Qua, Ai Gua Long Purple Eggplant

So from what I gather is I bought some generic long purple eggplant. The names Ai Qwa and Ai Gua are just Chinese words for the word eggplant. So the seeds Botanical Interests are selling are probably any eggplant that is long and purple that they couldn't sell as a named variety. Just hope it turns out to taste OK.

RE: Ai Qua, Ai Gua Long Purple Eggplant

Like most old cultivars that have been around for while there is great variation. But Long Purple whatever its origin has the appearance of the long type Japanese Eggplant. There are round Japanese and other Asian eggplants. Long Purple will not be any long purple and there are a ton of them, but will have some specific characteristics. That is true of most "heirloom" varieties. It is a recognised variety.
Evergreen is a good source of Asian Eggplants. Kitazawa also has a good selection The Canadian company Agrohaitai also has many Asian cultivars including a hybrid version of Long Purple. They only sell hybrid cultivars tho.

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