Southern Agrarianism and the culture of the Old South

How Much Okra?

Sometimes it just helps to see how much a given area can produce rather than reading numbers on a spreadsheet. Okra, beside being something I thoroughly enjoy, is a very prolific producer. Here are two photos – the first showing the area planted, and the second showing a typical yield. I pick okra about every 24 to 36 hours. Anything more than that, and you’re going to have okra that is past its prime.


  1. Wyandotte

    Might that be a 5-gallon bucket? Can okra get that long, ie, they seem to be 8″ or so in length. I’ve grown okra here in Canada and they were about 4″ long.

  2. Stephen Clay McGehee

    No, it’s just a container that 4 pounds of potato salad came in. I don’t know what the volume would be.

    I have several okra pods that I am letting go to seed, and those are about 7″ long. (More about this in a future post – I have been taking photos of them.) I will leave them until they mature and then turn brown/gray at which time I will harvest the seeds. For eating, they should be picked at about 3 1/2 inches long or so – otherwise, they get a tough and “woody” texture. The most reliable way I have found to know whether a particular okra pod is right for eating is the sound that is made when the pruning shears cut it from the stalk. It it is just right, it will make very little sound. If it is too big, you will hear the woody fibers as they are being cut. If it is cooked right, even some that are just a bit too mature will still be just fine to eat, but okra produces so much that there is no need to let them get bigger.

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