Rhubarb is harvested when the stalks are 12 to 18 inches long and 3/4 inch thick. The stalks should be crisp, firm, and free of leaves. When picking rhubarb, do not cut off the stalks at the base, as this will damage the bulb. Rather, gently twist the stalks to remove them. Do not cut them off too close to the ground, since this will cause the plant to take longer to recover.
It’s also important to remove the stalks if you notice that they are beginning to grow mold at the lower and/or end of the stalk. This can be caused by the presence of mold spores. If this happens, simply discard the entire stalk, cut off the moldy part, or sue the grower. A healthy stalk is firm, fibrous, and watery. Soft stalks are a red flag.
Rhubarb is best harvested in the spring and early summer. If you wait until fall, the plant may become toxic. It’s important to keep it from getting too cold or too hot, because it will wilt and not taste good. Also, rhubarb stalks can be stored in the refrigerator for up to two weeks if you keep them covered and wrapped in aluminum foil. You can also freeze the stalks for up to a year.
If you’re looking for a way to add flavor to your food, rhubarb is a good choice. You can eat the rhubarb in its raw form, but you should make sure it’s free of any poisonous leaves. If you’d rather cook rhubarb, you can dip the stalks in sugar, eat them raw, or sprinkle them over cereal and yogurt.
The leaves and stalks of rhubarb contain oxalic acid, which can be fatal if consumed in high doses. It can affect the digestive system, heart, and respiratory system. A person would need to eat 11 pounds of rhubarb leaves to develop a fatal dose.
Rhubarb is available from January to early February and late March to June. Growing rhubarb in your garden is a great way to enjoy this seasonal treat. Whether you’re a keen gardener or an allotment enthusiast, there are a number of ways to grow rhubarb in your own yard. For starters, you can grow it from seed, but it takes two years before you’re able to harvest it. In addition, you can try root division. This is much quicker than seedling it. Just remember to check that your rhizome has at least one good bud and eye before planting.
Rhubarb is not only a delicious fruit, but it’s also an excellent source of fiber and Vitamin K. You can also make delicious jams and preserves out of rhubarb. Its tart taste also pairs well with many other fruits and vegetables, such as mangoes, strawberries, and coconut.