Okra and lots more to come! Notice the cut stems on the plant.
This is where previous okra pods were harvested. I never
thought about how an okra grows until now, but it appears to
continue to grow inch by inch taller and at new inch it yields
a pod. I wonder how it knows when to stop growing?
THE GREAT OKRA EXPERIMENT CONTINUES . . .
Last fall, in one of my expansive moments, I had the brainstorm of giving 10 people four five-gallon buckets, and okra seeds from okra grown in 2021 at the Garland Community Garden. The people were to keep track of their.yields in 2022 and then report. At the time, I had no idea if an okra would grow in a five-gallon bucket. Well, there were no takers for this urban farming experiment. I guess folks were too busy working two jobs and answering all those spam calls we get these days. I planted Okra transplants in mid-May of this year (2022). I've also planted seed and transplants recently for my fall garden; however, this okra planted in mid-May is still blooming and producing.
I don't work two jobs, but I do spend a lot of time declining spam calls and I'm a standing member in the good intentions club. Thus, to my dismay, Charlie and I had been harvesting okra pods from our 6 five gallon pots and buckets for about 3 weeks when I realized that I was not keeping track of the pounds. Then a few days ago, I realized we could count the notches on each of the six pots and get the total number of pods that have been harvested. Then we could weigh an average sized pod (1 oz) and multiply by the total number of Okra for the total weight in ounces. (Divide that number by 16 for the total number of pounds.).
Okra growing in an antique five gallon tin can. Thus
far, like all our Okra, this plant is Clemson Spineless
and thus far this season has produced 60 pods, about
four pounds of Okra.
I found that our okra, Clemson Spineless variety, was amazingly consistent with 60 pods per plant so far, and as you can see from the photo above, more to come. I checked to see the price of Okra today and Walmart has it for $2.98 for 12 ounces. To date, we have grown 360 ounces. Divide that by 12 ounces and you get 30 packages at $2.98 each. Thus far, we have grown $87,80 worth of Okra (at todays market value).
Okra, If you like it, is a great vegetable to grow in urban areas in Texas. 1. It loves the heat. (although because you are growing in a pot, you need to water it daily and feed it a little compost once a week) 2. It is cheap. soil; okra seeds (get them from a friend)*. 3. Even if you only have the limited space of a patio or deck you still have room for an Okra Urban garden. 4. Fresh Okra doesn't keep well for long, only a few days; however, it is easily frozen for later use.
The Okra shown in this photo is also from my front yard.
It was not included in the experiment. It is a smaller variety
than the Clemson Spineless and is red Okra while the
Clemson is green. Oddly this variety was also consistent in
its output too. So far each pot has yielded 20 pods per plant
with more to come.
IF YOU HURRY, YOU CAN HAVE A FALL OKRA URBAN GARDEN!
For best yields, plant okra in the spring season two-to-three weeks after all danger of frost has passed. For a good fall crop, plant at least three months (around the first part of August) before the first fall frost which can be as early as October 31st.
*We will have okra pods at the Garland Community Garden in September when we have our Little Seed Library."
REMEMBER TO DRILL HOLES IN YOUR BUCKET!
Potted plants need good drainage to stay healthy.