Sunday, 19 January 2014

The first signs

Last summer I had decided a Rhubarb plant somebody had kindly bought me would be potted up and left in a sunny spot on the patio. I wasn't expecting a great deal from it the first year but the fact that it barely grew at all and never showed any signs that it was likely to do well was a bit of a disappointment.

In the end I gave up on it. I knew that planting the rhubarb in the ground would have been more beneficial but at the time in an small, already overcrowded garden this wasn't an option.

During the house move all of the pots came with us. I looked at this now completely lifeless pot of soil with no clue that a Rhubarb plant had ever been near it, thinking that it will come in handy for some herbs or maybe a salad crop in a few months.

Having now been sat on my back step for a couple of months, this week while tinkering about doing other odd jobs in the garden to my astonishment I noticed the unmistakable first shoots of Rhubarb pushing up through the soil. This was fantastic news, something I had long given up on and quite possibly would have forgotten about is now likely to become my first crop of the year. While everything else in garden still remains dorment the shoots are continuing to grow.

I have read up a bit on forcing Rhubarb by placing an upturned old pot or dustbin over the top of the plant to exclude light and bring on an earlier, blanched crop. As this plant has done so well I think I may well just leave it to it's own devices and  harvest when it's ready. It now has pride of place in a deep bed in a sunny corner of the garden where I'm sure it will thrive this year.

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