Alphabetical Plant Listing

Abelmoschus esculentus (Okra)

Okra, Okro, Lady's Fingers, French Gombo, Gumbo, Hibiscus esculentus


Grown for its edible fruit, Abelmoschus esculentus (Okra) is an annual boasting hibiscus-like flowers, 2-3 in. across (5-7 cm), in shades of yellow, pink, orange and red with contrasting centers. Blooming freely throughout the growing season, the blossoms give way to fruit capsules that can be used fresh or dried, and can also be cooked on their own or added to soups or stews. The leaves, flower buds, flowers and calyces can be eaten cooked as greens. Widely cultivated or naturalized in the tropics and subtropics of the Western Hemisphere.

  • Grows up 3-5 ft. tall and wide (90-150 cm).
  • Thrives in full sun, moist, moderately fertile, well-drained soils. This plant requires a warm sunny position sheltered from winds. It should not be planted outside until soil temperatures have risen to 60ºF (15ºC) and it dislikes low night temperatures below 55ºF (12ºC).
  • Harvest the pods when they reach 3 in. long (7 cm), about 4 months after sowing, though some early maturing varieties can produce a crop in 50 days in the tropics.
  • Keep an eye out for aphids, slugs, and white flies.
  • The hairs on the seed pods can be an irritant to some people and gloves should be worn when harvesting. 
  • Native to tropical Africa and Asia.

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Requirements

Hardiness 2 – 11
Plant Type Annuals, Perennials
Exposure Full Sun
Season of Interest Summer (Early,Mid,Late)
Fall
Height 3' – 5' (90cm – 150cm)
Spread 3' – 5' (90cm – 150cm)
Spacing 48" – 60" (120cm – 150cm)
Water Needs Average
Maintenance Average
Soil Type Clay, Loam, Sand
Soil pH Acid, Alkaline, Neutral
Soil Drainage Moist but Well-Drained
Characteristics Showy, Fruit & Berries
Garden Uses Beds and Borders, Patio and Containers
Garden Styles Informal and Cottage

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While every effort has been made to describe these plants accurately, please keep in mind that height, bloom time, and color may differ in various climates. The description of these plants has been written based on numerous outside resources.


Requirements

Hardiness 2 – 11
Plant Type Annuals, Perennials
Exposure Full Sun
Season of Interest Summer (Early,Mid,Late)
Fall
Height 3' – 5' (90cm – 150cm)
Spread 3' – 5' (90cm – 150cm)
Spacing 48" – 60" (120cm – 150cm)
Water Needs Average
Maintenance Average
Soil Type Clay, Loam, Sand
Soil pH Acid, Alkaline, Neutral
Soil Drainage Moist but Well-Drained
Characteristics Showy, Fruit & Berries
Garden Uses Beds and Borders, Patio and Containers
Garden Styles Informal and Cottage

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