Adam Frost’s essentials
The taste of rhubarb is so much better when pulled from your own garden and this is a great time of year to get yours in the ground, as long as the soil is workable. It’s happy in sun or part-shade and prefers a rich, freedraining soil. I have always found rhubarb easy to grow, it will just keep clumping up and providing delicious stalks from spring until the middle of summer. Make sure you water your rhubarb well through the first season and don’t be tempted to start pulling stalks in that first summer – it will need time to get itself established before it produces good strong growth. When you do start harvesting, hold the stalk at the base and pull off the whole stem. Don’t cut the stalks off as the section you leave will start to rot. Keep an eye out for snails and slugs around younger plants.
ADAM’S TOP 5 RHUBARBS:
‘Apple Delight’ fruity taste, with lovely, blushed stalks ‘Champagne’ forces well; I plant this one in my borders ‘Stockbridge Arrow’ a modern variety with red stems ‘Timperley Early’ fine all-rounder; can crop in March ‘Victoria’ an old, reliable variety; good May to August
Rhubarb stems taste great, while the leaves are bold enough for a border