How to grow rhubarb

Rhubarb, a perennial plant, lasts over 20 years if it is well looked after. It does not grow well in hot climates, preferring temperate weather conditions.
How To

Planting rhubarb

How to plant rhubarb the easy way. Before you start ensure the area for planting is well drained and nutrient rich with compost.

Choosing the best time to plant rhubarb

It is best to plant rhubarb roots in the autumn during the dormant season. Sow rhubarb seeds in spring.

Root or seed

Plant a fleshy Rhubarb root or ‘crown’ ensuring there is at least one bud. You can also grow rhubarb plants from seed.

Spacing out

Plant with the buds just above the soil and if planting more than one, space about 3 feet apart. Sow seed in deep rows.

Thinning out

When the seedlings have appeared thin them out to about 6 inches apart and then plant out the strongest plants in the autumn.

How to care for rhubarb

Rhubarb plants need mulching. Use compost or manure for mulch and then feed the plants with a liquid feed.

How long does rhubarb take to grow?

For a light harvest, if you are growing rhubarb from a root or crown will take approximately 1 year. For plants raised from seed it will take two years from planting out. For a heavier harvest, wait 2 years from crown grown plants and 3 or more from seed raised plants.

How to harvest rhubarb

You can harvest rhubarb in the spring and summer. Grab a rhubarb stem at the base and pull upwards whilst twisting.

How long can you continue to pick rhubarb?

You can continue to pick rhubarb until the plant starts to deteriorate.

How to transplant rhubarb

  1. You can easily split existing rhubarb plants to create new plants. Lift a rhubarb plant with a spade.
  2. Split the plant with the spade and separate the rhubarb plants ensuring there is a bud on each one.
  3. Place each plant section about 3 feet apart and plant in nutrient rich soil with the buds just above the surface.