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Rhubarb keeps dying off then coming back

I planted 3 small rhubarb plants out 2 springs ago. They all died back and disappeared within a few weeks and I thought "oh well". But then last spring, all 3 sprouted again so I figured this was normal and waited for delicious fruit... only to find they disappeared again by summer. I planted another one last year which also died back.

This year, 2 of them have come back and I think the 3rd is coming. And the newer one has sprung forth.

Is this typical? How can it live for a few weeks and keep coming back? I am trying this year to surround with weed membrane wondering if that was the problem. My aim was to let it colonise a large area of non-useful land since I thought once it got established, the stuff was indestructible, but now it seems a bit of a wuss!

Posts

  • ObelixxObelixx Posts: 30,021
    They like very rich soil - buckets of well-rotted manure, plenty of water and do well in partial shade.  Keep them hungry, thirsty or hot and they will retreat rather than grow into big strong plants.

     
    Vendée - 20kms from Atlantic coast.
    "We don't stop playing because we grow old; we grow old because we stop playing." - George Bernard Shaw
  • DovefromaboveDovefromabove Posts: 87,944
    Can you show us some photos of your rhubarb and the area where it’s growing please?

    Gardening in Central Norfolk on improved gritty moraine over chalk ... free-draining.





  • MisterBoyMisterBoy Posts: 52
    edited April 2020
    Obelixx said:
    They like very rich soil - buckets of well-rotted manure, plenty of water and do well in partial shade.  Keep them hungry, thirsty or hot and they will retreat rather than grow into big strong plants.

     
    Is that just while they get going? Because we used to live in a house that had some in a small garden/yard and it was rampant, and we never did anything to help it. A fence fell on it for weeks and it all died... but came back after that was removed!

    I don't think I could find rotted manure if I wanted to now everywhere is shut? 
  • DovefromaboveDovefromabove Posts: 87,944
    edited April 2020
    Rhubarb used to be grown on the spot where the contents of the privy pail had been buried for a few years ... you've no idea what was in that soil under the rhubarb in that small yard @MisterBoy  ;)

    Gardening in Central Norfolk on improved gritty moraine over chalk ... free-draining.





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