If you like Okra, you might want to grow it yourself at home. Once you have your own supply of Okra, you can make all the gumbo you want, or fry it up in some butter for a delicious feast as well as using it for controlling diabetes. It can also be pickled or roasted.
The benefit to growing Okra is that you not only get to harvest the fruit from the plant (the green pods) you also get to give your home some terrific décor because of how ornamental the leaves are. So, how do you grow Okra in your own home? Let’s go over it, step by step.
Step One: Get a five-gallon bucket or some large-mouthed pots and drill four holes in the bottom. Fill with fresh potting soil (not from your outdoor garden, but from a bag).
Step Two: Soak the okra seeds in a glass of water for 12-24 hours before you plant them into the pot. This will soften the outer shell a little bit and help them to germinate faster. You should plant the Okra in a row about three inches from each other and about an inch deep. Give the plant plenty of water, but don’t drown it, just make sure the soil is moist and keep it moist during germination.
Step Three: Use artificial lights or make sure that you can give it plenty of sunlight. Okra needs 7-8 hours of sunlight per day, and on cloudy days that might not possible so you should probably use an artificial light. Germination takes anywhere from just under a week to just over two weeks. Make sure you keep the plant in a room where the temperature is at 60 degrees (F).
Step Four: After 17-18 days of germination, increase the temperature to 70-80 degrees. You’ll still want to give the seedlings 8 hours of light per day.
Step Five:Alternate between giving the plant about a ½ inch of water and letting it dry out until the next watering. The plant has the ability to survive for a few weeks without water but overwatering may hurt it.
Step Six: When the plants reach about three inches, weed out the smallest and thinnest seedlings and leave the healthiest one. You only want one plant in the pot at this point or it may not produce fruit.
Step Seven: Don’t forget to give the plant veggie fertilizer when it is between five and six inches tall. Also you should give it fertilizer when the plant produces fruit.
Step Eight: When the plant grows more than six inches you will have to start thinking about structure and support. Okra plants can grow up to four feet in indoor conditions and up to six feet in outdoor conditions.
Step Nine: About two months after you plant the seeds the plant will produce fruit. Make sure you harvest them quickly or else they won’t taste good and the plant will produce better when harvested regularly.