Photo by Mark Kane
Eat Your Hibiscus
Okra is closely related (same genus, different species) to hardy hibiscuses like ‘Disco Belle’ that bloom with flowers the size of dinner plates. The kinship shows when an okra plant blooms. The flowers are small and trumpet-shaped, not giant and flat like ‘Disco Belle,” but they have the same flamboyant pillars of stamens and pistils in their throats. Domesticated long ago in Africa, okra is an annual that produce large, edible seed pods, which are cooked young before they turn woody.
Okra pods are mucilaginous (or less politely, slimy). Some recipes, like gumbo, embrace the mucilage as a thickener. Other recipes suppress it. A few drops of lemon juice, or a different acid ingredient, breaks it up. A pod sliced in rounds and fried also works. The result is slightly crisp and firm, without the mucilage. By the way, okra is Hibiscus esculentus (esculentus means edible) and ornamental hibiscuses are Hibiscus moscheutos. Close kin, different breeding.
Copyright © 2011 YourGardenShow.com
Plant Photo Tagging allows you to turn any garden photo into a rich tapestry of what you have planted. It’s fun, informative, and helpful to others visiting your garden. As you photo tag, you can easily add plant names from our database and/or make notes about anything you’d like. To get started, sign-in and go to your Garden.
Click on any image in your garden's slideshow Carousel to get to full-view mode. Click on the “Tag” icon just below your photo and you are ready to tag! Simply click and drag your mouse over a plant or area you’d like to highlight or tag. A pop-up box will appear and ask for either a plant name or a note - add one or both, then click “tag” and you’ve just tagged your garden!
Write and tell us your suggestion for a "How it Works" video:
For more info contact: firstname.lastname@example.org
Plant of the Day archive