Does anyone know where I can find Rhubarb plants on Oahu?
Isn't rhubarb one of those plants that needs a good chilling period? i have never seen it sold or growing in the islands. Well, there is always a first time i guess and maybe you have some elevation but if not would something like Ruby Red Swiss Chard work? Doesn't taste the same, of course, but is edible and bears a strong resemblance. Easy to grow from seed.
Swiss chard is a very tasty vegetable. Rhubarb stems make a delicious pie that tastes like lemon-raspberry. It's easy to grow in warm locations. I read of a lady in Wailuku that grows it successfully, and lots of people in Southern California. Seems no one knows about it here for some reason.
Perhaps no one knows about it because of the leaves? If fend for myself in someone's garden that's growing rhubarb, I'll probably say to myself how tasty the leaves look, he he he. Never planted rhubarb before nor ate one. Good luck finding your rhubarb plant!
Wow, surprise!, Kula Ace Hardware has rhubarb plants for sale. If it can be grown in Wailuku i should be able to grow it here. Where did you read about it growing in Wailuku?
I have been researching and it appears Rhubarb needs some winter chill. Looks like it would do better upcountry than where I am in Nanakuli. I lost the link to the Wailuku lady, and no luck searching for it.
I know this thread is old now, but I'm a new member. First off, I want to point out that, unlike ruby chard, the leaves of the rhubarb plant are NOT EDIBLE. Only the stalks are used . The stalks are delicious cooked gently and sweetened. They make good jams and jellies, delicious pies and I have even had sweetened, chilled rhubarb juice. I planted some starters I purchased last March from Kula Ace Hardware and they are doing very well here at about 2200' on the slopes of Haleakala. I don't know how well it would do downcountry. I am on the "call list" again this year for when the new starters come in at Kula Hardware. They go fast, so if you're interested in starts call Kula Hardware and get on the list for plants.
I just bought some seeds from ebay. Properly labelled they should get through ag fine, I checked the website and they are not restricted (that I could find). I have grown them elsewhere from seed, and whilst it isn't as quick as acquriing a large crown, it is cheap and easy. It takes a couple of years to grow to the point where you can harvest a useful amount. Ignore the temptation to harvest in the first year! You can also harvest your own seeds and store them.
Rhubarb seems to be pretty scarce on Maui and the seeds should only be a couple of months behind the starters, so if they are in short supply seeds might be a good route?
I ordered rhubarb seeds and planted them in Pearl City, Hawaii. They are growing very nicely and are about 12 inches long, nice green leaves and red stalks. I HAD to sample a couple tiny stalks and they taste marvelous! I am not sure how well they will do as the weather gets hotter, but I am hopeful they will at least get big enough to do something with.
according to Permacopia (a fabulous set of books about all kinds of plant to grow in Hawaii), rhubarb should do well at 1500-3000 ft elevation, and needs about 50"-100" of rain a year (i.e., it doesn't want to live in a desert). It may do OK at lower elevations.
If you have the Permacopia books, rhubarb is in book II, p159
Sorry to bring up this post but--Koolau Farmers in town (Honolulu) had these plants and seeds. I too inquired about rhubarb growing in low elevations and was told that some people have had success.
I saw few plants on Urban city garden in Pearl city.