The ladies finger, also called okra or bindi, is a seasonal flower in the melon family. It’s a summer crop and a heat-loving plant that thrives in full sunlight.
It’s low in calories, and can be prepared in many different ways. Ladies finger has 7.03 grams carbohydrates, 2 grams protein, 0.1g of fat, and 9 per cent fiber per 100 grams. Ladies finger is rich in folate, Vitamin C, E and K. It also contains high levels of iron, manganese and phosphorous. The seeds of ladies finger can be used for oil extraction and the fiber can be used in paper making.
Uses and Benefits of the Ladies Finger
- The increase in consumption of lady’s fingers can reduce bad cholesterol, the main cause behind heart disease.
- Due to its high fiber content and ability to regulate blood sugar, ladies finger is a great choice for diabetics.
- The ladies finger is rich in antioxidants that aid in fighting cancer. It also contains high levels of vitamin C which is well-known for its ability to boost immunity and prevent common infections.
- Vitamin K is found in the ladies finger, which is good for blood health and treatment of anemia.
- It is a great aid for weight loss during pregnancy and contains high levels of folate which helps ensure proper neurological growth.
Specifications for Ladies Finger Seeds
||Ladies finger, okra, bhindi
||6- 8 hours per day
||1.5 inches per 10 days
||Loams with light to medium sandy loams, well-drained
||Ammonium phosphate fertilizer
||After 12 Days
||2 months after planting
Care and Planting of the Ladies Finger
Sowing Ladies Fingerseeds
- To absorb moisture, ladies finger seeds must be soaked in water at least 12-14 hours before sowing.
- So that the roots can grow properly, the seeds must be sow in either pots or grow bags at least an inch below the soil surface.
- The ladies finger plant self-pollinates so hand pollination of the flowers is not necessary.
Growing Ladies Finger
- After 12 days, the ladies’ finger seeds will begin to germinate.
- To ensure that the plant grows straight up, it should be trimmed by tying it to branches 12-18 inches apart. The ladies finger plant needs bright, sunny sunlight to thrive at this stage.
- The plant should be watered only from the bottom. Do not wet the leaves. To keep the soil moist, a thick layer of mulch can be applied to keep weeds away.
- Apply nitrogen and phosphorus for the best results. Spread chicken manure for about a week before you plant. The use of the right herbicides is essential for commercial development.
- Transplanting is not recommended as it can cause root damage.
Harvesting Ladies Finger
- In 8 weeks, the ladies finger plant will mature fully. Development can take up to 12 months. When the ladies finger seed pods measure 2 to 3 inches in length, it is time to harvest them.
- You can harvest the bloom after it has faded, but you shouldn’t wait too much or it will turn to black and die.
- Harvesting should be done on alternate days, i.e. every second day, so they do not become too tough.
- Because the pods have spines, it is a good idea to use gloves for picking them.
- Take care when harvesting pods, because there may be multiple pods at once.
Tips for growing a Ladies Finger
- The soil should have a pH between 5.8 and 6.8.
- The ladies finger plant needs water, especially during flowering.
- The best time to plant ladies finger is in the spring or early summer. Also, it’s important to plant them in the coolest place possible so they don’t rot. It’s also important that you harvest the vegetables at the right time in order not for the vegetable to over-mature.
- To increase yield, the bottom leaves should be pruned.
Common Problems and Solutions for Ladies Finger Plants
The ladies finger plant attracts pests such as whiteflies, beetles, whiteflies, and other insects, which can cause serious damage to the plant. To avoid these diseases, it is important to take preventive measures such as crop rotation and soil conservation.
Young ladies finger vines will be attacked by leaf-eating insects. The young plants should be treated with extra care and any leaves that have been eaten should be removed immediately.
It is best to plant in clay soil for transplanting because of the difficulty of seedlings arising from clay soil.
It is important to grow the plant in an area with lots of sunlight and high temperatures. The soil temperature should not exceed 18.3 degrees Celsius (65 degrees Fahrenheit). Cooler climates require less water because they tend to limit the growth of plants.