Okra is no stranger to vegetable gardens, especially in the South, but this selection is right at home in ornamental as well as kitchen garden plantings. ‘Candle Fire’ has beautiful largely lobed leaves with striking red veining, markings, and stems, and it partners well with other foliage favorites such as burnt-orange to deepred coleus cultivars (Plectranthus scutellarioides cvs., Zones 10–11). Its sweet yellow flowers with rosy centers give way to unique red pods that are brighter than other red okras and have a rounded, not ribbed, form. A 2017 All-America Selections award winner, ‘Candle Fire’ received high marks for productivity, taste, texture, and tenderness. It does well in heat and humidity. And if you’re looking for something unusual to add to flower arrangements, this okra’s leaves and colorful pods are just the ticket.
‘Candle Fire’ okra
Abelmoschus esculentus ‘Candle Fire’
Size: 4 feet tall and 2 feet wide
Conditions: Full sun; moist, well-drained soil
Native range: Asia