Photo by Melody

PlantFiles: Eggplant
Solanum melongena var. esculentum 'Ichiban'

Family: Solanaceae (so-lan-AY-see-ee) (Info)
Genus: Solanum (so-LAN-num) (Info)
Species: melongena var. esculentum
Cultivar: Ichiban
Hybridized by Seminis (Petoseed); Year of Registration or Introduction: 1977

One vendor has this plant for sale.

5 members have or want this plant for trade.


24-36 in. (60-90 cm)

24-36 in. (60-90 cm)

Not Applicable

Sun Exposure:
Full Sun

Parts of plant are poisonous if ingested

Bloom Color:

Bloom Time:
Mid Summer
Late Summer/Early Fall


Other details:
Average Water Needs; Water regularly; do not overwater

Soil pH requirements:
6.1 to 6.5 (mildly acidic)
6.6 to 7.5 (neutral)

Patent Information:

Propagation Methods:
From seed; sow indoors before last frost

Seed Collecting:
N/A: plant does not set seed, flowers are sterile, or plants will not come true from seed

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By Farmerdill
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By rebecca101
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By rebecca101
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By HuntTech
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By HuntTech
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By HuntTech
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By HuntTech
Thumbnail #7 of Solanum melongena var. esculentum by HuntTech

There are a total of 10 photos.
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6 positives
1 neutral
No negatives

Gardeners' Notes:

Positive pgcarroll On Apr 2, 2010, pgcarroll from Belleair, FL (Zone 9b) wrote:

We buy at least one of these every year from Lowe's garden center. It's a cheap trick, to be sure. We have just planted two of them in our very sunny front yard - yes, some people think we're weird for growing veggies in our front yard, but you go where the sun is. We generally plant them in March/April here in zone 9b and get lovely, shiny, purple fruit with very few seeds all summer long - and, believe me, the summers are long here in Florida. If anyone wants to taste some really fantastic fruit and needs any recipes, let me know. We will continue to buy and enjoy this every year. We stake our plants since they get so full of fruit, and ours attain a height of at least 4'.

Positive tanmanaheim On Aug 4, 2009, tanmanaheim from Anaheim, CA wrote:

this is my first year planted ichiban eggplant i bought it from home depot (3" tall). I planted it in the semi shading area. my first fruit is about 6" long and it looks very healthy see pciture. I worried to see some white flies lay eggs under leave. need some help to get rid of white flies.

Positive HuntTech On Jun 16, 2009, HuntTech from Cumberland, MD wrote:

This plant grows very easily and is prolific. The blossoms are beautiful and it seems that nearly each one bears an eggplant so far. Mine seem to be more thirsty than average and require a nice watering daily. Once the eggplants start growing, they grow very fast on the plant with a nice, deep purple color.

Positive rebecca101 On Mar 15, 2008, rebecca101 from Madison, WI (Zone 5a) wrote:

This is the best eggplant I've grown to date. Early, highest production, stellar flavor. It is a smaller eggplant - not quite a 'mini' but almost. Beautiful plant as well.

Neutral haas9359 On Aug 1, 2007, haas9359 from Lewiston, ID wrote:

First the positives, the flowers and plant are very pretty. Deeper purple flowers than other eggplants and lovely purple shading to the leaves and stems as well. The eggplant themselves taste lovely, no bitterness. However, the one caveat I have is that the fruit turns matte quiet quickly, before any of my other eggplants do. So I have to pick them fairly small. I'm not sure if it's because of our extreme heat out here or what exactly. Not sure I will grow this one here again.

Positive pajaritomt On Jul 30, 2006, pajaritomt from Los Alamos, NM (Zone 5a) wrote:

I thought I couldn't grow eggplant at an altitude of 7300 ft. in a climate of warm but not hot days, and cool nights. I discovered that Ichiban is very productive in these conditions. I was amazed when I got my first crop. It has a lovely flavor and is very productive. We eat skin and all and have never had any problem with bitterness. Also, I think the purple flowers are really quite lovely.

Positive Farmerdill On Jan 12, 2004, Farmerdill from Augusta, GA (Zone 8a) wrote:

This is the most prolific and tasty eggplant that I have tried. Ichiban means Number 1 in Japanese and it really is .


This plant has been said to grow in the following regions:

Phoenix, Arizona
Sonoita, Arizona
Jonesboro, Arkansas
Anaheim, California
Manteca, California
West Sacramento, California
Morrison, Colorado
Sedgwick, Colorado
Clearwater, Florida
Jacksonville, Florida
Monticello, Florida
Pensacola, Florida
Tallahassee, Florida
Augusta, Georgia
Lewiston, Idaho
Winthrop Harbor, Illinois
Jeanerette, Louisiana
Vacherie, Louisiana
Cumberland, Maryland
Grand Rapids, Michigan (2 reports)
Pierce City, Missouri
Los Alamos, New Mexico
Drexel, North Carolina
Efland, North Carolina
Hillsborough, North Carolina
Cave Junction, Oregon
Altoona, Pennsylvania
Mount Pleasant, South Carolina
North Augusta, South Carolina
Warrenville, South Carolina
Houston, Texas
Shepherd, Texas
Spring, Texas
Magna, Utah
Radford, Virginia
Richmond, Virginia
Madison, Wisconsin

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