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When to pick rhubarb?

Posted by QCmike30 Zone 5, IA (My Page) on
Wed, Apr 28, 04 at 22:57

I live in Davenport, and am wondering when I should start picking rhubarb. I bought a house a few years ago and inherited a rhubarb bed with it, so quite established plants. Thanks in advance for your advice.


Follow-Up Postings:

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RE: When to pick rhubarb?

As soon as it pokes out of the ground! Just remember not to use the leaves for anything - they are poisionous. I cut my rhubarb, but many recommend pulling it. The thinner stalks are less stringy and less acidic.

Oh! You can make stepping stones from the leaves - wait until they are quite large, but don't let them get too many bug holes. Try this - you will love the results!

Here is a link that might be useful: Rhubarb Stepping Stone tutorial


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RE: When to pick rhubarb?

Thanks a lot, GardenGirl. I guess I should have also asked when do you STOP picking them too...? ;)


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RE: When to pick rhubarb?

Well, that is a good question! If you keep it picked, watered, and don't let it go to seed you could probably pick all summer. I usually treat it as a spring treat though.


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RE: When to pick rhubarb?

I pop in here on once and a while as I live just over the river in southwest Wisconsin. My rhubarb is hugh this year, and it's only its second year. Tonight after work, I had to pull out at least 10 seed heads. Could not believe that it was going to seed so early in the year!
Mary Lu


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RE: When to pick rhubarb?

hi qcmike, i am in davenport too :)
was just informed that my grandma has some ready to go rhubarb so i'll be a'picken too.
what do u make with it??? i have a fabulous recipe for rhubarb crumble, its a big hit every year.
might even try a jam this year.
mic


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RE: When to pick rhubarb?

I picked some, but most of it is green already. I'm not sure what is even made from rhubarb- I give it all to my mom and grandma, lol! :) I had to cut off lots of seed heads as well.


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RE: When to pick rhubarb?

If anyone wants some good recipes for rhubarb let me know. Just email me and I will be glad to send them to you. I have some tried and true "family" recipes from pie to crisp and also several cake types.
Mary Lu


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RE: When to pick rhubarb?

At the risk of sounding like a dummy here (sorry I am a newbie to gardening!), why can you not pick it after it goes to seed?


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RE: When to pick rhubarb?

This is just what I heard through the grapevine:
Once it goes to seed, the taste gets bad. The nutrients are sent up the seed chute instead of out to the leaves..
Also I have heard that if you pick it after June, you run the risk of killing it off. But I don't know if that's true, being that Rhubarb and cockroaches will be the only two things left after a nuclear holocaust.


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RE: When to pick rhubarb?

LOL! Thanks for the info Luke! Ya know there may be some truth to it not coming back. Last year I planted some rhubarb on the back of our lot. We live in a new neighborhood with lots of empty lots. The builder sends a guy out to mow all of the vacants with a big tractor. He ran over about half of the rhubarb with the mower and it didn't come back this year. So I am back to planting AGAIN, this time further from the lot line!


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RE: When to pick rhubarb?

  • Posted by Lindac Iowa Z 5/4 (My Page) on
    Sat, May 29, 04 at 14:31

Once Rhubarb produces seed, it stops growing ( nothing about the taste....the strength of the plant goes to the seeds).
As long as it is fed and watered and you don't remove more than 1/4th of the stalks at one time....you can pick rhubarb all summer.
Rhubarb should be pulled, not cut.
Linda C


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I'm Sorry....recipes

So sorry I did not get the recipes emailed to anyone. Just so darn busy....poor excuse I know. For the past two weeks have been picking strawberries. About an ice cream pail a night. Made 72 half pints of freezer jam on Saturday.
Here's one good recipe...Hope this makes up a little bit?

Rhubarb Crumble:
1 c sifted flour
3/4 c oatmeal
1 c melted butter
1 tsp cinnamon
1 c brown sugar
4 c diced rhubarb
2 T cornstarch
1 c sugar
1 c water
1 tsp vanilla
Mix flour, oatmeal, brown sugar, butter and cinnamon. Put 1/2 of this crumb mixture in a 9 inch pan. Cover with the rhubarb. Combine cornstarch, sugar, water and vanilla. Cook until thick and clear. Pour over the rhubarb. Top with remaining crumbs. Bake until done at 350 about 30 minutes.

This is the receipe that I use the most. I love it.

Mary Lu


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RE: When to pick rhubarb?

Have plants in their second year that are doing great, but I didn't know I could pick it now!! Thanks for the info.
Our favorite reciepe:

Strawberry Rhubarb Crunch
Filling: Mix together and place in a 9x13 glass baking dish
4c chopped Rhubarb
5 c sliced strawberries
2 c sugar
3 T cornstarch
t nutmeg
t cinnamon
(2/3 c chopped pecans)
1 T tapioca

Topping: Mix together and crumble evenly on top
1 c flour
1 c rolled oats
2/3 c brown sugar
t nutmeg
t cinnamon
2/3 c butter
(1 c sliced almonds)

Bake at 350 for 35-40 minutes, till bubbly.
Serve warm with vanilla ice cream.


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RE: When to pick rhubarb?

Hi im a VERY new gardner never could keep even a spider plant alive :( but... i inherited a Rhubabrd plant from the previouse owners when we bought our house so id LOVE to keep it going - thank you for that Rhubarb crumble sounds WONDERFUL!!! I am however a GREAT baker! :)xx cant wait to taste the pies im going to make -- but wondered what does *going to seed* mean? what does it look like and how am i to stop it? :( lol
AND does moving it kill it? :(
Also we have new neighbors moving in and id like to *share the wealth* how do I pick some or cut some safely to give them to plant as well??

Thank you
Any and all help would be greatley appreciated :) xx


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RE: When to pick rhubarb?

we pull and use our rhubarb all season, never noted any taste difference. some say that it becomes poisonous after seeds but as far as I understand that is an old folk lore. We dig into the roots to divide the plants. New plantings will take a couple of years to take off and become productive.


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RE: When to pick rhubarb?

In regards to rhubarb going to seed, just cut off the seed shoot as soon as you see it.It is a shoot with many small white balls instead of a leaf. You can then continue pulling rhubarb most of the summer. Don't pull all at once.About a third at a time is good. New shoots will continue to come.


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RE: When to pick rhubarb?

Hi, I'm new here and I know that when you pick rhubarb you should only pick one fourth to one third of the stalks each time but my question is how long should you wait between pickings?

Thanks,

dawn56


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RE: When to pick rhubarb?

Do Rhubarb stalks need to be pinky red to pick them? I have one plant that has thin pink stalks and they pull out easily the other two plants are green and don't. What is the secret of ripe rhubarb...thanks. If you are looking for a delish recipe for cake...I haven't found a person who doesn't really like this one....give it a try.

Rhubarb Cake

1 cup light brown sugar
cup butter
1 egg
1 tsp vanilla
1 cup buttermilk
3 cups rhubarb, cut into " chunks
2 cups flour
1 tsp baking soda
tsp salt

Cream Sugar and butter. Add egg, Vanilla and buttermilk. Blend together, then add dry ingredients and beat til smooth. Fold in rhubarb. Pour into greased and floured * 9x13 baking pan.
*I use Wilton Cake Release. This is great stuff....comes out perfectly every time. If allergic to soy..do not use.

Top with
2 tsp cinnamon
cup sugar
cup chopped walnuts (OPT)

mixed together.

Bake 350 degrees for 35 to 40 minutes. While still warm, I like to drizzlw with a little podered sugar icing.

2 T butter
1 -2 cups powedered sugar
a few tablespoons milk
Mix till smooth.


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RE: When to pick rhubarb?

Rhubarb doesn't get "ripe" when the stalks are big enough they're ready.
Linda C


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RE: When to pick rhubarb?

Wow, this was a blast from the past... :)


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RE: When to pick rhubarb?

I'm excited to try these recipes. My rhubarb was guaranteed two years old when I planted it here in Georgia and it has produced large, tender stalks. Some are pinkish and some are green, but they all look good. Have discarded the leaves in a safe place as I'm told they are poisonous. Thanks everyone for your great advice and recipes!


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RE: When to pick rhubarb?

Growing up in Iowa & now living in Arizona...I couldn't believe my eyes in seeing rhubarb plants at my local Lowe's. Figured I'd give it a try in the garden...nothing ventured, nothing gained. Surprisingly, since I planted it in March, it is growing like crazy! Here's where I need your help/advice...
The plant I bought was only about 5" tall with about 3 MINI stems--hardly an established rhubarb plant. I now have about a dozen stalks 12-18" long with some red near the base; would have about 2 dozen if the rabbits hadn't eaten it before I put chix wire up; and there are new leaves surfacing every week. I keep reading that you can't pick until the 2nd year. I can't pick these stalks this summer at all???? If so, what is the reason for this?? Will it kill the plant, the rhubarb won't be any good...??
My next question is: any tips on how to grow longer/bigger stalks? Like I said mine are about 12-18" long...but I recall stalks in Iowa as a kid being much bigger than that. Anything to worry about or should I just chalk it up to the fact it's growing in the desert of AZ and not in the rich soil of Iowa?
Thanks in advance for your advice!


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RE: When to pick rhubarb?

my rhubarb went to seed so early this year and i wonder why


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RE: ?Hollow Rhubarb

Hi Everyone!

I am going to try and make jam from my Rhubarb. Some stalks are solid and some (larger ones) hollow. Does it matter? Mine are seeding already also.

Thanks


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RE: When to pick rhubarb?

Thanks, can't find frozen rhubarb, why?


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RE: When to pick rhubarb?

can you only pick the stalks if they are red?


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RE: When to pick rhubarb?

Hi,

I bought some rhubarb from lowes in 2 months ago. They were about 3" tall little plants. They grow like crazy - 18" tall with many red stalks. I cut some stalks and try to cook them. They don't taste good - not sour- nothing close to rhubarb pie I bought from store. What is problem? Is it because they're not mature yet?

Thank you for your advice in advance.


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RE: When to pick rhubarb?

Rhubarb leaves contain oxalic acid - that is why they are poisonous. As the season progress, the stems start to accumulate oxalic acid also. This is why picking and eating rhubarb later in the season potentially is risky.

I stop picking at the end of June. Plus, by then the plant starts to go into a seasonal decline that is associated with hot weather.


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recipes for rhubarb cookies?

DOES ANYONE HAVE A RECIPE FOR RHUBARB COOKIES? WHILE HAVING KNEE SURGERY DONE A NURSE WAS TELLING ME SHE MAKES RHUBARB COOKIES THAT ARE VERY GOOD. NEVER HEARD OF IT. WISH SHE WOULD OF HAD THE RECIEPE ON HAND LOL! tHANKS KATHY


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RE: When to pick rhubarb?

I was given a great book from my Daughter-in-law for Christmas called the "Joy of Rhubarb". I LOVE IT. There are great recipes for making jam using pie fillings and rhubarb. I made about 5 different kinds last year. They were a hit with the entire family especially my 6 year old granddaughter. I did freeze the rhubarb and made the jam in late Fall as we do not have air conditioning and husband is hunting so it is a good time to keep the stove going and not have to stop for meals etc.


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RE: When to pick rhubarb?

The leaves being poisonous should I -not- put them into my compost?


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RE: When to pick rhubarb?

  • Posted by RpR_ 3-4 (My Page) on
    Tue, Jul 17, 12 at 16:03

It is fine to compost rhubarb leaves.


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RE: When to pick rhubarb?

I didn't pull any punches on my well established rhubarb this year-- I harvested lots for a month or so and then pulled out all the rest when I was done for the season. Mine seeded early but I just kept cutting them off and it kept producing fine eating stalks.

My confusion is about what it has done since then-- it's October now and there is a whole new crop of stems ready to pick and I'm not sure what to do with them. What is proper rhubarb treatment when winter hits-- do you pull off everything that's present and let it sit bare for the winter months? I'm planning on dividing it before the cold really sets in and I have no idea if I should leave stems on the section I plan to leave in place (working on the theory that it feeds off of itself like asparagus...?)

Totally unsure what to do but love my rhubarb and want to treat it right. :-)


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RE: When to pick rhubarb?

This is an old thread, but thought I would put in my two cents anyways. My Dad was a rhubarb expert of sorts, people from all around always asked him if they could pick some. His secret was fresh cow manure, then put it in a bucket about 1.2 way, add water, mix it, then pour around the rhubarb. One no-no I saw on here you don't ever cut it, you pull it to save the root and regenerate it. Grab along the bottom of the stem and pull gently!! Second you can eat it during the summer, but don't let it go to seed, cut the tops off when it starts to seed. By cutting the seed part off you regenerate the rhubarb and the energy goes to the roots and it grows healthy stems.


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