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Rhubarb, now?

LG_LG_ gardens in SE LondonPosts: 2,857
I stopped picking my rhubarb some time ago, as recommended, to allow the plant to build strength for next year. But I've been away for a week and it must have been windy here - several stalks were pretty much detached at the base. They're firm and look fine, and won't be feeding the plant, but can we eat them now? Is there another reason to stop picking, other than for the plant's sake?
'If you have a garden and a library, you have everything you need.'
- Cicero

Posts

  • Blue OnionBlue Onion Posts: 2,478
    I pick mine when ever I want to across the summer.. it's never done any harm.  It's a large plant with tons of leaves, that really should be divided, but grows strong every year.  I can see avoiding picking after June with a small or new plant.. but otherwise I think a crumble here or there across the season is just fine.  
    Utah, USA.
  • LG_LG_ gardens in SE LondonPosts: 2,857
    Mine is fairly young, so I've been following the 'don't pick the first year, pick sparingly the second year' maxim. This is the third ywar for one plant, thd second for the other, but they've been slow. I just wasn't sure if there was a reason other than that - like it gets poisonous in autumn or something! Sounds like it'll be fine - which is pleasing as I LOVE rhubarb!
    'If you have a garden and a library, you have everything you need.'
    - Cicero
  • ObelixxObelixx Vendée, Western FrancePosts: 22,270
    Once you get past mid July the levels of oxalic acid increase and can make life uncomfortable for anyone with gout or arthritis.   It can start to get a bit woody too, especially if it's been dry.     Make sure you leave enough foliage to feed the root and crown ready for next year's shoots, especially if you plan on forcing one.
    "We don't stop playing because we grow old; we grow old because we stop playing." - George Bernard Shaw
  • LG_LG_ gardens in SE LondonPosts: 2,857
    Ah - perhaps that was what I was thinking of! Thanks @Obelixx. I don't have gout or arthritis, though I probably will get arthritis at some point. I'm only hoping to use the stalks that had already detatched themselves - the others will stay on the plant.
    'If you have a garden and a library, you have everything you need.'
    - Cicero
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