Other than delicious, okra's flavor defies easy description. Okra fruits add heft to soups and stews—and are tasty fried or boiled. Growing from 2 to 6'', Okra is at its tastiest, tenderest best when the pods are smaller. Loaded with protein, minerals and fiber, okra is the indispensable ingredient in gumbo, adding depth of flavor and thickness. Indeed the name for okra in Africa—where it originated—is gumbo.
Sow okra seeds in full sun and average, well-worked soil after all danger of frost. In rows 36" apart, plant 3 or 4 seeds every 12" and cover with 1" of fine soil. Firm lightly. Okra plants emerge in 14-21 days.
How to Grow
Thin to strongest seedling per group when plants are 1-2" high. Provide plants with 1-1 1/2" of water weekly. Grow okra in a different place every year to avoid problems with pests and diseases.
Pick young okra pods that are 2-3" long and harvest them every other day to encourage continuous production. Cut pods from the stem just above the cap. Store pods for several days in the refrigerator in a plastic bag. Okra pods are delicious steamed, in soups, and fried.