Okra, also known as lady’s finger, is a popular vegetable that is widely grown in Indian kitchen gardens. Its tender and slimy texture makes it a perfect ingredient for a wide range of dishes, from curries to stews. It is also rich in nutrients such as fiber, vitamin C, and folate, making it a healthy addition to any meal. In this article, we will discuss how to grow okra in an Indian kitchen garden.
|Scientific name||Abelmoschus esculentus|
|Weeks to grow||8 to 12 weeks, depending on the variety and weather|
|Harvest per plant in kgs||1 to 2 kg per plant, depending on the variety and growing conditions|
Varieties that can be grown in India
There are several varieties of okra that can be grown in India. Some of the most popular varieties include Pusa Sawani, Parbhani Kranti, and Arka Anamika. These varieties are known for their high yield, disease resistance, and good quality.
Soil conditions needed
Okra grows well in well-drained soil that is rich in organic matter. It prefers a slightly acidic to neutral pH range of 6.0 to 7.0. The soil should be loosened to a depth of at least 8 inches and enriched with compost or well-rotted manure.
Caring in different weeks
Week 1-2: After sowing the okra seeds, keep the soil moist by watering regularly. Okra seeds should germinate within 7 to 10 days. Once the seedlings have emerged, thin them to about 12 inches apart.
Week 3-4: As the plants grow, mulch around them to conserve soil moisture and suppress weeds. Make sure to keep the soil consistently moist but not waterlogged.
Week 5-6: Once the plants reach a height of about 6 inches, fertilize with a balanced fertilizer. Follow the instructions on the label for application rates.
Week 7-8: Keep an eye out for pests such as aphids, spider mites, and whiteflies. If detected, treat the plants with an appropriate insecticide.
Week 9-10: Prune the plants by removing any dead or yellowing leaves. This will help improve air circulation and prevent disease.
Okra plants typically start to produce fruit about 60 to 70 days after sowing. The fruit should be harvested when it is about 2 to 3 inches long and still tender. If left too long on the plant, the fruit will become tough and stringy.
How much can one harvest from a small kitchen garden?
The yield of okra can vary depending on several factors, such as the variety grown, soil conditions, and weather. However, in general, a well-maintained okra plant can produce up to 1 kg of fruit per week.
Growing okra in an Indian kitchen garden is a rewarding experience. With proper care and attention, it can provide a steady supply of fresh and nutritious vegetables throughout the growing season. Whether you are a seasoned gardener or a beginner, okra is a great vegetable to add to your garden.