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Moving rhubarb

SAM60SAM60 Posts: 1

I have a substantial  rhubarb plant in the wrong place! I'd like to move it somewhere more suitable as soon as possible. Must I wait till winter? 


  • DovefromaboveDovefromabove Central Norfolk UKPosts: 64,502

    Yes!  now is not the time to move a substantial anything really image

    “I am not lost, for I know where I am. But however, where I am may be lost.” Winnie the Pooh

  • ClaringtonClarington Posts: 4,949

    While working out the layout for "project chickens" I've realised our rhubarb is in the wrong place - aka right inside the coop where I expect the chickens will have their fun with it which I have no idea if that's good for them or not. I was going to move it this winter (and so haven't been harvesting from it) but of course the sooner the better.

    When is the earliest you can move rhubarb? Does it die down in such a way that tells me its ready to move or do I need to wait for a frost or... what? I'm hoping we can put up a temporary fence around them to give them a little protection as we'll be doing with the snow drops come spring before I can transplant them to somewhere more suitable!

  • Alan4711Alan4711 LincolnshirePosts: 1,630

    Hi i got this from RHS i would think moving and dividing would be done at the same time,  


    Division will guarantee a plant identical to the parent and is the most common method of propagation. It is also good practice to divide established crowns about once every five years if they have become weak or overcrowded. Lift crowns between autumn and early spring (usually in November).

    Use a spade to divide the crown into sections each retaining a portion of the rhizome (thickened root) and at least one growing point. Sections from the outer part are better than the centres of old plants. Discard any old or decayed parts of the crown.  Replant straight away or wrap in damp sacking until ready to plant.

  • Steve 309Steve 309 Posts: 2,753

    I did exactly that last autumn and it worked well.image  Until someone decided to pull every stalk from the best two plants.image

  • ClaringtonClarington Posts: 4,949

    Thanks Alan. I'd read November seemed to be the best time but had hoped we might be able to get in early. Fortunately I've read that rhubarb leaves are non toxic to chickens (in fact they're a natural wormer) so I am now a little less worried about having them in the coop if I some how can screen them off so give them a bit of protection.

    My alternative is to leave them in and see what happens and be prepared to buy some more.

  • ClaringtonClarington Posts: 4,949
    Steve 309 wrote (see)

    I did exactly that last autumn and it worked well.image  Until someone decided to pull every stalk from the best two plants.image

    Oh Steve that's awful! Was it a well intending family member (I can imagine my partner doing this not realising plants need a few stalks to remain) or a member of the public intent on getting as much free food as their dirty hands could get.

    Things like this make me a little glad I have the space in the garden not to need an allotment. The greater world is often quite unpleasant!

  • Steve 309Steve 309 Posts: 2,753

    This was the Activities Manager at the hostel where I run the garden.  I'd explained what to do before I went away but he ignored that and decided to take the lot.  And some of them were cut instead of pulled. What's particularly annoying is that I found several of the smaller weedy stalks discarded in the kitchen.

    Their problen really.  No more from those plants this year and they'll have to be treated as first year transplants next year.  So they've lost a year's crop.  Unless they do the same thing again.

    At least they put the leaves on the compost heap.  Wish they'd eaten them really image

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