Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Growing organic okra

Okra, also known as lady finger or bhindi is officially called Abelmoschus esculentus. The name 'okra' comes from West Africa, as someone told me when I worked in Nigeria, and it's popular for thickening the stew that goes with garri.
Anyway, we planted some and found that they grew easily. In the full sun with not a lot of care or attention needed. The only problem is that each plant does not produce a lot of fruits at a time, and they are relatively large.
The flowers appear at the interstice, with the first one at about 20-40 cm off the ground. The plant keeps growing, so you have to harvest them as it grows, to avoid them becoming too hard. In the end, the plants grew to about 1.5-2m, over a cycle of about three months.

They are very tasty when cooked straight from the plant :p

Information on okra from Purdue University.


Barbarapc said...

I saw a very pretty red variety growing when I visited Oklahoma, USA - the woman had rows of it in a large suburban lot. It's a race to pick it before it becomes too tough. Your lotus photos are beautiful - what a magical flower.

julian said...

barbarapc - hey thanks for the compliment, and for my first comment! :)
Some of the okra we had were red for some reason, but not the whole plant...

Barbee' said...

I grew up in a southern state in U.S. and okra was one of our favorites. I have been thinking about growing it next summer. Thank you for the reminder.

julian said...

Good luck with growing it :)