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Old March 13, 2017   #1
shule1
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Default Hill Country Red okra overwintered :)

So, I grew some Hill Country Red okra, last year. It was cool, but late, and I never ended up harvesting and seeding it (I had lots of other stuff to seed, and I never got to that one before it snowed).

Anyway, we got lots of snow over the winter, and it got down to about -21° F.

Today, I went out in the garden to clean up, and I collected the seeds from the Hill Country Red okra. I noticed that some of them had roots! So, apparently, they survived the winter. I'm pretty happy about that, as it was my only fat okra variety, it seems. They should do a lot better this year.
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Old March 14, 2017   #2
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Okra, a southern thing !

Now that I am back in the south I am all ready to grow okra. I have got 3 varieties ( NO Clemson ... is not one of them)
Okra is a heat loving plant. My local county extension center says plant it April 21 to may 21. I will plant April 21, of course. That is exactly the same as eggplant from seeds. I will plant them early April.
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Old March 15, 2017   #3
shule1
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You can grow okra well in my area. I've seen it flourishing several blocks away (probably Clemson Spineless). So, it's certainly possible. I'm trying to grow it landrace-style, myself, rather than change the growing conditions to be ideal on a particular year. It probably likes very fertile soil.

Although it can get cold in the winter, it does get very hot, consistently (although with cool nights) in the late spring and summer.

I expect that my saved seeds will perform better than first-year seeds. I've got saved seeds for Hill Country Red, Edna Slaton's Candelabra and Egyptian. I got a bunch of new varieties to try, too.

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Old March 15, 2017   #4
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Shule, I agree with you, and like your ideas.

Remember that okra cross pollinates very easily. Growing different varieties of okra in the garden works fine if you're not saving seeds. Bees/wasps - especially Bumble Bees love okra flowers. They will cross pollinate several varieties of okra in a day easily.
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Old March 15, 2017   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AlittleSalt View Post
Shule, I agree with you, and like your ideas.

Remember that okra cross pollinates very easily. Growing different varieties of okra in the garden works fine if you're not saving seeds. Bees/wasps - especially Bumble Bees love okra flowers. They will cross pollinate several varieties of okra in a day easily.
Awesome. Thanks! I hope they do cross, though! Hybrids can be extra productive. I'm encouraging natural crosses with most of my plants, with the exception of a few things I want to breed true (like Aswad eggplant, because it's awesome). That way I can breed new varieties that can call my town home. I don't just want them to cross once, though, but over and over again (ideally every year, but if not, that's fine).
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Old March 15, 2017   #6
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Okra germinates in warm soil, so that is a weird story. It is why we plant okra in hills, because the hills get warmer inside than deeper in the ground, so faster germination. If you plant too soon, the okra seeds will simply rot in the ground. So ground temps are the whole key.
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Old March 15, 2017   #7
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They were just the beginnings of roots (enough to let me know the seeds were alive). I want to grow them in a different spot (so, I didn't leave them there). None of them were under the soil; they were all on top, and it's moist right now (so, that might have made a difference). It's starting to warm up into spring, but it still freezes once in a while.

I know peppers sometimes start to grow roots, but can take a long time before they come above soil. So, I'm not sure how long the okra would have taken to open up, if I just left it there.

The parent seeds that I purchased had very low germination rates in our soil (I direct-seeded). Some varieties didn't germinate at all. I got a couple plants, maybe, from a whole packet of seeds. I might not direct-seed them all, this year, but I probably will some (including the ones I saved seeds from).
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Old May 21, 2017   #8
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My okras are getting ready to flower.
I might bag one of each fro seeds, for next year
As I have mentioned before , I am growing 3 varieties.
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Old May 21, 2017   #9
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I should have let them finish sprouting a bit and put them in pots to transplant later; because they're not sprouting (the ones I saved and dried, and then planted, yet, anyway). Some of my other okra was the first of the things to sprout in my greenhouse, though.
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Old August 18, 2017   #10
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I've seen a lot of the small, skipper butterflies working my okra flowers this year.
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