Okra has long pods and is also called ladies’ finger in English-speaking countries. Each okra pod produces many seeds.
If you are interested in knowing how Okra tastes like you can read our article by following the link.
In this article I am going to shed light on how to save okra seeds.
How to Save Okra Seeds?
Let the okra pods grow as long as possible until they start to crack open. Use your hands to get the seeds from the okra pods. Collect the seeds in a jar and store them in the refrigerator. Okra seeds may last up to 3 years.
Harvesting Okra Seeds
Use a sharp knife to open the okra pods and remove the seeds. If the pods are very dry, you may not even need a knife. Just crack the pods open, and pack the seeds into a container.
Okra crops produce multiple seeds in a single pod. They are easy to harvest and also yields a large profit margin for farmers.
If you have plenty of okra crops to harvest, you can remove the seeds by screening and winnowing.
Saving Okra Seeds While Harvesting
The best harvesting time for okra seeds depends on what the seeds are used for.
If they are meant for consumption, you do not have to wait until the pods are lengthy. You can pick and boil them at 3 inches long.
If you are replanting the seeds, allow them to grow as big as they can. As soon as the pods begin to show a brow-like color, pluck them off to prevent spoilage.
When you notice the pods begin to dry off and crack, you can harvest the seeds for replanting.
When the pods are dry, it is easier to remove the seeds as you can just crack them open by hand.
Collect the seeds in a jar and store them in the refrigerator. Okra seeds can last up to 3 years.
For the best results, soak the okra seeds in little water two days ahead of planting them.
Saving Okra Seeds After Harvesting
You can keep your seeds in the refrigerator for as long as one week. Okra seeds survive best in the tropical and subtropical regions. Hower, okra can also be grown in most parts of the United States.
You will know your okra seeds are mature when the pods start to brittle. If you ignore them on the plant, they can grow to a long length.
The pods may not be edible, but you can use the seeds for many food choices.
How to Save Okra Seeds from Overgrown Okra Seed Pods
It is of popular opinion that overgrown okra does no longer serve any purpose.
However, this is not entirely true. Overgrown okra can still be used as a stew spice or to flavor food, such as pies.
Also, you can save the seeds from the overgrown okra pods and keep them for up to three years if stored in a dry, cool, and dark place. Make sure you keep them in a location inaccessible by pests.
You need to sun dry the okra seeds first on a flat surface. Make sure you place the seeds in an area that will not easily be blown away by a breeze.
Besides, you can use okra seed pods to decorate your Christmas tree.
Planting Okra Seeds
Okra seeds grow well in soil temperatures above 80 degrees Fahrenheit (27 degrees Celsisus).
A slight cut on the seed coat will improve the germination process of the seed.
Make sure the seeds are planted 1/2 inch (1.3cm) below the soil.
When planting, select well-draining soil. The best season to plant okra is spring.
Water the okra seeds weekly. However, okra seeds germinate with minimal irrigation.
A transfer of pollen grain from various okra plants can cause hybrid germination and different varieties.
Frequently Asked Questions About Saving Okra Seeds
When can I harvest okra crops?
You can harvest okra crops as soon as the flower begins to fade. At this stage, they are still immature. The stage is the best period to harvest for eating purposes.
What can I use okra seeds for?
You can cook okra seeds immediately after harvesting. The seeds improve the flavor of gumbos, snacks, and stews. You can also serve it as a side dish. If you want to store it in the refrigerator for a long time, you can steam the okra seeds.
What affects the growth of okra seeds?
When poorly cared for, okra seeds are liable to pests and diseases. These pests include bacterial spots, white mold, vascular wilt, mildew, cucumber beetles, and southern blight. Southern farmers should also protect the okra crops against nematode infection.