Indoor Eggplant Blooms Falling Off

Hi All...
This year, I've taken it upon myself to try an experiment with growing some veggies indoors along with my steady herb garden. I'm in Omaha Nebraska which is roughly a zone 5. I've got some good southern windows as well as supplemental lighting and have had excellent results with some herbs, lettuce and some varieties of chiles. In the fall, I tried some other things including some heirloom tomatoes and some Kemer eggplant which is a slender variety from Turkey. Anyway, the plants themselves are extremely healthy. Huge green leaves and each eggplant stands about 2 feet tall. They have been sprouting blooms for about the past 6 weeks. But, what happens is that the bloom stays for a few days and then shrivels up and falls off the plant. Does anyone know why this is occurring? Do these blooms need some type of special treatment? Do I need to pollinate them by hand somehow? If anyone has any clues as to why this is happening, I'd be greatly appreciative.
Thanks!
Dan
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Unless you have indoor insects, yes, you will need to hand pollinate. That's the only way I'm getting tomato sets on my tomatoes in the greenhouse since no bees can get in there!
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In article <KatraMungBean-
snipped-for-privacy@centurytel.net says...

I have heard of swirling a small paint brush around in different flowers. Is that what you use for the tomatoes? Or something else?
Thanks...
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Actually, the tomatos seem to produce fruit OK. I've got a couple of indoor fans that blow a gentle breeze that I think helps to move the pollen. However, what I've noticed on both the tomato blooms and the eggplant blooms is that there is little and mostly no pollen visible. On most flowers you can see the nearly microscopic grains of pollen, but on the eggplant blooms there appears to be none. So, I'm curious if maybe the plants might not be getting the right nutrients or something that is making them not develop pollen. Either that, or it's just so microscopic, you can't see it.
On Tue, 22 Feb 2005 15:58:24 -0800, Antipodean Bucket Farmer

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Dan Charette said:

A thought: might not be warm enough for the eggplants.
Eggplant flowers would need hand pollination in the absence of insects. (Bumblebees seem to be the main pollinators of eggplants in my garden.)
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Antipodean Bucket Farmer wrote:

Actually, tomatoes are so strongly self pollinating you don't need the brush. Just flick the flowers with your finger and that should do it. No need to transfer pollen from one flower to another.
Steve
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For tomatoes, I just manipulate them gently with my fingers. A small paintbrush would probably work better. Eggplant blossoms are larger if I recall?
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