We’ve been posting a lot about rhubarb so I’m sure there are some of you wondering how you can grow your own. Rhubarb is one of my favorite plants because it’s incredibly easy to grow. It’s important that, when you’re starting out, you pick a good plot because rhubarb will return each year.
We attempted to grow rhubarb in Australia but because of the plot we chose, our yields were pretty miserable. This time we got lucky and inherited rhubarb with the property and the previous owners picked a great spot in the corner of the garden in the shade. An established plant is roughly 2-3ft in diameter so when you’re ready to plant, choose a plot where the plant will have space to grow. You’ll need to dig a hole twice the size and depth of the rhubarb crown and fill with vegetable growing compost.
Since our plants are already quite established, we just make sure we keep them topped up with lots of compost, keep the weeds away and cut back any flowering stalks. Compost is very important because rhubarb is a heavy feeder and needs rich, organic soil.
If you’re starting out, you should also try and leave your rhubarb alone for the first year or so. Adding top dressing to soil in spring and autumn will keep your plants happy. I find the easiest way to pick rhubarb is with a sharp knife at the base of the plant. Stay well away from the leaves and roots though, since they are toxic! You can store the fruit in the fridge or by canning or freezing it.
If your rhubarb is starting to get a bit overwhelming, feel free to drop us a line here at Fruit Share and we’ll send some volunteers out to harvest it for you. Now, it’s time to start cooking that rhubarb!