I recently purchased a rhubard root that I purchased from my local plant
shop. It was one of those that are in little plastic bags of earth
sealed with a cardboard label at the top. After opening it I was
presented with loads of earth and what looked like a clump and damp
cardboard. Not really knowing what I was doing I pulled this 'cardboard'
apart looking for some kind of root but found nothing, the whole thing
just fell apart in my hand. I am guessing that clump of cardboard WAS
the rhunbard, is that right??
I feel a little ripped off and certainly will not purchased these
packaged roots again. :(
Like any living thing you buy it may be in good condition or not so good
depending on how old it is and how it has been stored. Next time pick
through them and choose the best looking one. A viable rhubarb crown would
generally look and feel like a small woody clump with the remains of old
shoots on the top (or it may have little new shoots emerging) and roots on
the bottom. My guess is that the one you got was attacked by fungus in the
bag that destroyed the crown.
I finally have a fresh, still alive, root but now need a little advice
about growing it. I've heard soo many different conflicting instructions
I'm totally confused! I'm pretty sure now that I shouldn't touch it for
a year but I've read all about this forcing business and in the Mirror
today they have written that it only grows pink if it IS forced.
Need a rhubarb expert to clarify for me! :s
I don't know anything about forcing or what that may have to do with
rhubarb. Grow it like other vegetables, full sun if possible, plenty of
manure and/or compost, water when dry etc. Plant it now. You can cut at
any time of year just make sure you leave the roots alone and leave a few
stems and leaves so that it can keep growing, cut the older stems and leave
the younger ones to grow bigger, it is fairly tough. When the clump is
large you can divide it and grow more clumps.
The Brits are into forced rhubarb. Not sure why they bother.
Grub, rhubarb can be, and is, pink regardless of whether it's forced or
not - the colour of the stem has more to do the plant than it is with
whether it's forced or not. eg, you can have a plant that always produced
greenish stems or you can have a plant that always produces wonderfully rich
red stems all of the time. David and I would both grow our plants in the
same way - never forced, lots of poop and in an open sunny position in
clumps separated about ever 3 years if we're good or when we get roudn to it
if we're not. The rule about not cutting it in the first year of growth is
to make sure that the plant has time to get well and truly established and
you don't ahrvest it to death. Always leave some stems and leaves on the
plant so it can use these to feed itself.
Grow it like other vegetables, full sun if possible, plenty of
I guess I've led a sheltered existance. All the rhubarb I've ever seen
has been red. Go figure. Looked at rhubarb "Victoria"
That's just plain wrong (from my experience).
Every gun that is made, every warship launched, every rocket fired signifies in
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