Let's talk okra..........
I've not seen a discussion about okra. I happen to love okra. If you have grown okra please add to the discussion with the varieties you grow, how you prepare the seeds for planting and how you cook your okra. If you save okra seed please share how you saved the seed and if you have developed any "crosses" that you found interesting.
I started growing okra about 20 years ago in a backyard garden. The type I grew was Emerald - which is smooth, round and spineless. The Emerald pods tend to get woody at about 4 inches. I was introduced to Louisiana Green Velvet the following year and stuck with it until I stopped gardening 5-6 years later (work schedule). LGV could grow to 6 inches and still be tender enough to eat.
When I began to garden again I added Clemson Spinless to the mix and only grew it one year - still do not like CS to this day. I discovered Baker Creek Heirloom seeds and began to grow Burmese okra - great okra but did not stay tender after 4-5 inches. Grew Cowhorn varieties for 2 years with great success - taste was good - size of pods was huge. I then returned to the smooth podded okra 2 years ago with Stewart's Zeebest (Baker Creek) and WOW!! This okra grows to 7-9 inches for me with NO loss of tenderness and is quite prolific. The pods are skinny. My plants are widely spaced because I like my plants to branch. Zeebest gets about 8 feet tall in my raised bed garden. Zeebest slows production in late October here in Central Virginia and stops completely by first frost. 2011 is the first year I saved any okra seeds.
I soak my okra seeds for 2 days before planting -- warm water changed 2X per day. Usually do not sow inside but did this year (2012) because I got late start.
I fry okra whole, steam, boil and use in seafood gumbo.
Okra I've grown + rating (5 great -- 1 never again)