acarbine
Newly Registered
Posts: 4
Joined: Tue Jun 02, 2009 10:53 pm
Location: Utah

First year for Rhubarb

we just planted rhubarb this year... and there are new stalks. should we pick those? I heard you weren't supposed to get any the first year... or maybe the tag said to pick any new blooms... huh? help???? :)

cynthia_h
Super Green Thumb
Posts: 7500
Joined: Tue May 06, 2008 7:02 pm
Location: El Cerrito, CA

I planted rhubarb last April and got beautiful stalks and HUGE leaves. (We photographed one leaf when it was more than 14 inches long.)

But the four :shock: plants which I planted in a one-square-foot area (I misread Mel Bartholomew *and* John Jeavons...) were entirely too big for such a small area.

I harvested four stalks from the largest plant in March, just before transplanting all four of 'em into containers. I've made rhubarb & strawberry pie and other rhubarb dishes for a long time, but my own first-year stalks weren't very flavorful. :(

Now I'm letting all four plants develop bigger roots and hope to harvest perhaps in October and again next February/March.

Depending on where you are in Utah, letting the plants develop for next spring and not harvesting in the fall may be the way to go. I *did* cut off the leaves whenever they started to turn yellow, indicating that their photosynthetic activity was coming to an end; the leaves were put into my BioStack compost bin.

Just watching the knot of leaves in the center gradually uncurl and develop into HUGE leaves is beautiful.

Cynthia H.
Sunset Zone 17, USDA Zone 9

acarbine
Newly Registered
Posts: 4
Joined: Tue Jun 02, 2009 10:53 pm
Location: Utah

Thanks!

Thanks for your information. I love rhubarb! I grew up in a small town where everyone had a garden and rhubarb was always around, but we never grew it for some reason. I'm excited to have some of my very own now. :)

User avatar
rainbowgardener
Super Green Thumb
Posts: 25279
Joined: Sun Feb 15, 2009 6:04 pm
Location: TN/GA 7b

rhubarb

I'd leave it alone this year to let the plant develop. I planted one rhubarb plant last year and let it grow. This spring I harvested some rhubarb and then divided the plant into three. All three are now thriving (they are beautiful) and I expect I should be able to harvest a little more by fall. Next spring I should have three good sized plants to take from!

cynthia_h
Super Green Thumb
Posts: 7500
Joined: Tue May 06, 2008 7:02 pm
Location: El Cerrito, CA

Guess what the subject was on page 1 of the Food section in my morning paper! :wink:

https://www.insidebayarea.com/food-and-wine/ci_12352078

It's always nice to be on the leading edge of a trend. Especially one that tastes so good! :D

Cynthia

User avatar
Gary350
Super Green Thumb
Posts: 5478
Joined: Mon Mar 23, 2009 1:59 pm
Location: TN. 50 years of gardening experience.

I have always been told not to harvest the first year. Feed the plant a lot of fertilizer to promote root growth this year, potash and phosphate. Next year you can harvest it.

petalfuzz
Green Thumb
Posts: 632
Joined: Sat May 31, 2008 3:37 pm

I planted two roots this spring, and didn't harvest any stalks. I hope they do better next year, though cause the stalks only got 8" long before the leaf unfurled. Now one is bolted and I don't know if I should pick off the bloom. Oh well!

Our local botanical garden has a "pioneer" garden and they have truly uncared for mega-rhubarb behind their log house. The leaves were easily 2 feet across on stalks 3 feet long! Plant on top of plant! It was massively unruly! I wanted to get some of that fur sure, but I restrained myself! :shock:



Return to “FRUIT FORUM”