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How to Grow Okra

Okra Germination Information

Okra Seed Germination How to Sow Okra:
  • If the summer growing season is short and spring is cool, start seeds indoors, 4-6 weeks before planting out, at a temperature of 72-75°
  • If the summer growing season is long and spring is warm, start seeds outdoors after all danger of frost is past and the ground is warm
  • Indoors and out, sow at a depth of 4 times the size of the seeds and expect germination in 10-15 days
  • To hasten germination, soak the seeds in warm water for 24 hours. Bear in mind that seeds may rot if planted in cool, wet soil
  • When sowing seed outdoors, we recommend a maximum planting depth of 4X the width of the seed

How to Grow Okra:
Transplanting: Transplant when there are at least two sets of true leaves

Spacing: Space seedlings 15-18 inches apart in rows spaced 3 feet apart

Soil: Site in full sun in a neutral, rich, well-drained soil. Fertilize prior to planting, again when plants are 12 inches tall, and finally when the plants begin to flower

Temperature: Grows best when night temperatures remain above 50°

Additional Care:  Okra is very tolerant of clay soils and heat

Appearance and Use:

This exotic, tropical-looking, plant grows 3-6 feet tall and produces 2-3 inch, pale yellow with a maroon center, Hibiscus-like flowers. Narrow, ribbed, edible pods with pointed ends follow the flowers. The pods become tough as they increase in size, so harvest them when they are 3 inches long or less. Pick them daily to keep the plants in production

About Okra:
Botanical name: Abelmoschus esculentus
Pronunciation:  a-bel-mos’kus es-ku-len’tus
Lifecycle:  Annual
Origination: Malvaceae; native to the tropics