Saturday, 28 January 2012

Granddad's Rhubarb

The gorgeous ruby red rhubarb that is growing in my garden isn't just a plant. It's part of my family history.  This plant is now in its third generation, passed down from my Granddad, to my Dad and now to me. It's taken some time to establish, and yes - I was very nervous when it seemed like it wasn't growing and was looking a little sad.  I didn't want to be the one that killed the rhubarb that had been growing since the 1950s!  To sense the importance of this plant, I wasn't allowed to have a cutting until I stopped renting and bought a house!  

Although we call this Granddad's rhubarb, I have a suspicion that it is my Gran that we have to thank for the survival of this plant.  She has a natural green thumb and has spent more time that you could imagine tending to her garden in her 93 years.  To me this rhubarb isn't just something to eat I see it as a feature of my garden, part of my history and is an everlasting reminder of all the wonderful memories of my Granddad, the times spent in the garden with my Dad and also serves as a reminder to call my Gran.

There's a lot to be said for keeping seeds, growing from clippings and utilising the plant stock available.  So this is just a reminder to you and to me, that sometimes we already have the best plant stock for next year, it just takes some extra care, preparation and cultivation.  Rhubarb likes sun (but a little shade too), good drainage and I like to keep a layer of mulch around the base of the plant.  It doesn't take too much to care for once it is established and will become a great addition to your garden.   

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