Let's talk okra

Seed starts with one sad dying okra seedling in the upper left hand corner.  

Seed starts with one sad dying okra seedling in the upper left hand corner.  

I confess I am a little overly focused on growing okra. I have wanted to grow this delicious and useful veggie since I fell in love with New Orleans and it's food. Usually it's not too hard to find frozen okra in the supermarkets but fresh is far more rare. I figured it can't be that hard to grow a heat loving southern plant in the Pacific Northwest... right?

Well it's been up and down.

My first batch of okra seedlings died off early on. I got too excited, started seeding them indoors very early, and moved them outside to acclimate too soon. The slowly shriveled up and died one by one. The whole thing was slightly heartbreaking and made me do some more research. I read all about how okra does fantastically in the heat, even in downtown New York in the summer. I figured I would just try again in the heat of the summer and see what happened.

I direct sowed the seeds this time in raised rows. I've heard raised rows can increase the soil temp. To my excitement all the seeds sprouted and are now slowly growing in the garden. Sending warm thoughts their way!

Happy okra seedlings! 

Happy okra seedlings!