Away from the Fray: From Election Frenzy to an Interlude in Paradise
hanks to above average September and October temps that have prolonged the growing season, the six okra plants, planted in mid-April, are now leisurely shedding their massive leaves.
Bedded in a 4×5 ft. cluster adjacent to the paling fence, the six plants grew to seven foot heights and camouflaged a small area in which a miscellany of wood and metal tomato stakes were posited for storage.
To compensate for its prickly, large, heart-shaped, five-lobed verdant foliage that are somewhat gawking and unsightly in appearance, in full season the okra plants’ pinnacles are studded with some of the prettiest vegetable garden blooms. Some two inches in length, the blooms’ hibiscus-like flowers’ calyxes envelope the twirling petals, the color of which is a cross of lemon, chartreuse, saffron, and bumblebee yellow shades that invite a pleasing sight. Unlike other flowers, the Hibiscus Esculentus’ almost oval-shaped buds cloak the tightly knit and curling petals much like a thick Cuban cigar’s rolled tobacco leaves.
Halaby, Raouf J. Professor Emeritus, "Away from the Fray: From Election Frenzy to an Interlude in Paradise" (2016). Articles. 219.