Find SolutionsPesky Insect Solutions
Critter & Animal Solutions
Fungus & Disease Solutions
Organic Fertilizer Solutions
Cover Crop Solutions
Rhubarb is easy, ornamental, and deer resistant
Feb 17, 2012 - Charlotte from Peaceful Valley
Want an easy edible that looks good too? Include rhubarb in your vegetable garden or your landscape, for brilliant color that the deer won’t bother.
Perennial vegetables like rhubarb are such garden winners—plant them and have them in your garden for years to come, with very little maintenance.
Tricia plants rhubarb in our new video, and talks about its easy care. Rhubarb can grow in full sun or part shade.
RHUBARB PIE IN YOUR FUTURE
The most popular reason to plant rhubarb is to be able to enjoy springtime rhubarb pie, crisp, and compotes -- and to create preserves. The leaves are inedible but the edible stalks are ready to hop in to your pie plate.
COLORFUL STALKS BRIGHTEN YOUR GARDEN
Grow rhubarb for its good looks too. If you choose a variety with red or pink stalks you’ll have a dramatic contrast with the dark green leaves.
There is a range of colors in rhubarb varieties, but they all have the same flavor. Open pollinated rhubarb varieties will show some variation in color. A gardener recently asked us if the stalk colors change with soil pH (like the flower color in hydrangeas)—and the answer is no, the stalk colors don’t fluctuate with pH.
Ivette Soler, author of The Edible Front Yard, says that rhubarb “has the ornamental impact of that other architectural edible, the artichoke, with equally impressive leaves.” Use it as the centerpiece or to mark the corners of your garden areas.
RHUBARB IS A DEER RESISTANT EDIBLE
Do you have some families of deer who think your garden is their home away from home? They will probably turn up their pretty noses at rhubarb. The rhubarb leaves contain a poison (oxalic acid) and eating the leaves is toxic for deer and humans alike.
RHUBARB IS A PERENNIAL
Rhubarb, like all perennial vegetables, will flower as part of its growth, as shown in our photo. Some gardeners see the leaves of rhubarb and think that it is a leafy green—then become concerned that the rhubarb is bolting when it flowers. Fear not. Purdue University does say that you can remove the flowers to let the growing energy go to other parts of the plant, so if the flowers worry you, go ahead and snip them off.
Grow it for pie, grow it for looks, but don’t miss out on this easy edible!
Categories: Vegetable Crowns, Rhubarb Crowns, Edible Landscaping
Growing GuidesJerusalem Artichoke Planting & Growing Guide
Rhubarb Planting & Growing Guide