First okra harvest

slowpoke_gardenerJuly 8, 2014

I felt at the time I was getting my okra planted a little late, but I got my first harvest today. The sad thing about it is that I have it planted so thick that I did not know it was blooming. I doubt that I will ever have the discipline to thin my plants properly, it's a little like a government official showing up at your door and telling you that you have too many children and to pick out the ones you don't want and shoot them and they will dispose of the bodies. Well, it may not be that bad, but you get the idea.

Larry

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AmyinOwasso/zone 6b(6b)

LOL, Larry, I am the queen of crowding. Somehow I can't visualize how big that tiny little plant will get. Plus what if some thing eats one and then they will be too far apart and weeds will grow....that's my story. And my okra is still short.

    Bookmark   July 8, 2014 at 9:45PM
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cowdiddly

Yes I am guilty of overcrowding. Its showing up bad this year I have a veritable jungle. In SE Ok (leflore) we have been getting pounded by huge rains all year> Getting all the rain everyone esle missed. I lost all cabbage and spinach to drowning., I used to plant 36 inch rows for every thing except lettuce, carrots, radish and onion. I cut it back to 30 inches in hope of getting more variety and am paying the price. I have a two sister Romano bean/ Tru gold corn disaster. The heavy fetilized corn caused the beans to go all vines and have pulled some stalks completely down. When I planted it I said I will either get beans or corn dang it- look like its corn. Planted 10 squash 3 feet apart and can barely get to it. I have some old pre civil war whipporwill peas I planted 3 feet apart and they went nuts and are now climbing into my tomato cages and smothering a few. And to top it I always throw kitchen scraps into garden for tilling in next round and have store bought cantelopes of an unknown variety that grew volunter that were already loaded with flowers so I let them stay. Now they are vining through out the whole mess. LoL
As for Okra, I tried Emerald this year. I planted about 4-5 seeds every two feet and a seed or two in the middle because I had read somewhere that Okra takes 3 weeks to sprout. Malarky, I had Okra thick as hair in 3-4 days. I thinned them to two feet and that was not enough the plants are already 4-5 ft tall and I have to crawl through the rows on my Knees to pick it. I am really impressed with the type though, as it grows some really refined pods that are somewhat skinnier that my old cow-horn but the pods can be let get much longer and still tender. Deep emerald color.delishious flavor, reddish stalks and cream colored blooms make a beautiful plant. I have been picking it every day for about 3 weeks as the pods seem to double in size overnite. Definitly a keeper (Cambell Soup got this one right in the 50s) but the packet lied about the plant size as it said 4-5 ft stalks. but mine are already that size and its just early July. Needs to be planted 2.5 3 feet apart in full 36-40 inch rows

    Bookmark   July 8, 2014 at 10:32PM
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macmex

Cowdiddly, part of the problem with the corn and Romano beans my be that sweet corn, almost by definition, does not have the sturdy stalks required to use as support for beans.

There may well be some combination (specific variety of corn, matched to a specific variety of bean) which will work. I suspect it would be important to use a bean with somewhat restrained vining tendencies..

George
Tahlequah, OK

    Bookmark   July 9, 2014 at 10:35AM
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Okiedawn OK Zone 7

Larry,

Congrats on the okra. I planted mine too close too (and I always do) but so far the okra is serving as Grasshopper Chow so I don't know if we'll ever get any okra. Right now we have some really holey okra leaves.

Cowdiddly, I hope you're appreciating all the rain. Why is it that rain generally falls only in two amounts: too much or too little.

I love Emerald okra. My okra seeds sprouted quickly too. If okra is taking up to three weeks to sprout, someone must either be using old seed or planting while the soil is too cold.

Dawn

    Bookmark   July 9, 2014 at 1:54PM
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farmgardener

Larry, I understand the crowding and the grief of thinning any plantsâ¦.but I told my grandson he needed to thin his okra so it would grow better - then had to come home to my garden and "practice what I preach"â¦haha I also got my first okra this week. I planted mostly Stewarts Zeebest this year - found out about it off this forum couple of years ago and it has become my favorite producer.

    Bookmark   July 9, 2014 at 5:25PM
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Okiedawn OK Zone 7

Stewart's Zeebest is awesome. If you planted it closely and didn't thin it, it would make a great hedge. I have been trying to grow different okra varieties on about a 4-year rotation because there's so many different ones that we like.

The worst thing about thinning is when you finally make yourself thin everything out to the proper spacing, and then large hail comes along a few days later and thins out what you had left. That's one reason I put off thinning for so long.....and that's my story and I'm sticking to it.

    Bookmark   July 9, 2014 at 5:53PM
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AmyinOwasso/zone 6b(6b)

7' tall okra hedge, hmmm. Can you use the stalks like bamboo the following year? ;)

    Bookmark   July 9, 2014 at 6:44PM
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slowpoke_gardener

I have tried a few types of okra and loved them all. Last year George sent me some Heavy Hitter seeds. I liked the Heavy Hitter so well that it is the only kind I planted this year. I hope to continue saving seed from the best plants and see if I am still as happy with it, so far this year I am very happy, but I have got learn to thin properly.

Here is a picture of my Heavy Hitter okra, other than being planted to thick it looks great.

Larry

    Bookmark   July 9, 2014 at 6:46PM
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chickencoupe

Looks terrific, Larry.

    Bookmark   July 10, 2014 at 5:02AM
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