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Grow the main ingredient for a classic, delicious, and family favorite – rhubarb pie. 

Start by preparing the soil as soon as it is workable.  Add several inches of organic matter to the soil to improve drainage in heavy clay soil and increase the water holding capacity in sandy and gravelly soil. 

Purchase roots, plants or ask a friend for a division of their rhubarb plant.  Dig and divide existing rhubarb plants in spring as they emerge.  Plant these at the same depth they were growing in the garden.  Set bare root plants in the prepared soil with the crown buds 2 inches below the soil surface.  Space the plants about 3 feet apart.

Grow rhubarb in full sun to light shade in well-drained soil for best results.  Plants grown in poorly drained soil and heavy shade produce fewer and spindly stems.

Wait one year to make a light harvest.  Pick 12 to 15 inch high, thick and crisp stems for one or two weeks on two-year-old plants and 6 to 8 weeks once established. 

Just a bit more information:  Harvest rhubarb by pulling or cutting the leafstalks from the plants when they are 12 to 15 inches high, thick and crisp.  Remove and compost the leaf (this part is toxic) and only use the stem.


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