How To Harvest Rhubarb Seeds?
When it comes to harvesting rhubarb seeds, there are two ways:
1) You can just cut them off the plant or you can take a knife and scrape them off with your fingers.
If you choose the second option, then you have to use your fingernails since the plants don’t produce any pulp when they’re ripe. So if you want to save time, then scrape them off with your nails.
2) You can break open the pod and pull out the seeds yourself.
However, this method requires some skill and patience because the fruit inside is hard. Also, you need to be careful not to crush too many of them at once.
The first way involves cutting off the top part of each rhubarb seedpod (the one which contains all the seeds). Then you’ll have to carefully peel the skin off so that you can get at the seeds inside.
You could also try breaking open the pod, but this is not recommended since it’s quite dangerous and may cause injury. Instead, you should wait until after the fruit has ripened before attempting to remove its insides.
How To Grow Rhubarb From Seed?
Before planting rhubarb seeds, you need to know a few things about this plant. It takes a very long time before the seeds become fully-grown and if you want to harvest them, then you’ll have to wait even longer.
You can grow the seeds directly in the ground or in pots. For the ground, make sure that you till it well and add manure or compost. This makes the nutrients reach the rhubarb roots so that they stay strong.
However, if you’re growing in pots, then you won’t need to fertilize or manure the soil. Instead of that, you could place a 1/2-inch diameter wire through the bottom of the pot so that it becomes easier to pull out later on.
With both of these options, place them in a sunny area (6 hours or more) and keep the soil moist. If they start to get too dry, then add water.
How To Collect Rhubarb Seeds?
People have different experiences when it comes to collecting rhubarb seed. Some have tried growing them for several years without success. It’s important to learn how to harvest rhubarb seeds since they’re great for eating and make a wonderful jam! Here are some tips that will help you grow them:
1) Only harvest the seedpods which are fully grown, but not damaged or diseased.
2) Check the seeds for dark or discoloration.
They should be lighter in color and not too soft or mushy. If you press them with your fingernail, they shouldn’t leave an indentation and should bounce back to their original shape.
3) Spread a paper towel on a flat surface and use another one as a cover.
Use your fingers to scoop out some of the pulp and place it on one half of the paper towel. Place the other half on top and use your fist to gently pound it. This should remove the outer shell of the seeds.
4) Check each seed for a little fiber or fuzz which might be attached.
If there is any, then remove it with your fingers as much as you can.
5) Place all of the seeds in a glass jar which has a lid or use a Ziploc bag and keep them in a cold place like a fridge or a garage.
Don’t freeze them though!
6) Before next growing season, soak the seeds in water for at least 24 hours and then plant them.
You can also use the seeds which have already fallen off naturally. If you’re growing in pots, then you don’t need to remove the outer shell or fuzz since it will naturally fall off by itself.
How To Plant Rhubarb Seeds?
Rhubarb plants need a lot of space to grow and spread out so you can either allow the rhubarb to grow on its own or you can prune it. If you want to harvest the rhubarb, then be sure to prune it first since the stalks won’t become as large if they’re pruned.
To do this, wait until the plant is dormant in the winter. Rhubarb is a perennial plant so it has two dormant periods each year. The first one happens in late spring to early summer and then again in late summer to early fall. When you see that the leaves start to wither and turn brown, that’s the time to prune it.
Sources & references used in this article:
Rhubarb: The wondrous drug by CM Foust – 2014 – books.google.com
Breeding a low-oxalate rhubarb (Rheum sp. L.) by B Libert – Journal of horticultural science, 1987 – Taylor & Francis
Morphologic variation in the USDA/ARS rhubarb germplasm collection by A Pantoja, JC Kuhl – Plant Genetic Resources, 2010 – cambridge.org
Rhubarb production in California by WL Schrader – 2000 – books.google.com
Grow your own rhubarb by J Parsons, NS Mansour, JR Baggett – 2003 – ir.library.oregonstate.edu
Specialty Crop Profile: Rhubarb by T Bratsch – 2005 – vtechworks.lib.vt.edu
Chilean rhubarb (Gunnera tinctoria): biology, ecology and conservation impacts in New Zealand by PA Williams, CC Ogle, SM Timmins… – Department of …, 2005 – academia.edu
Alterations in flower and seed morphologies and meiotic chromosome behaviors of micropropagated rhubarb (Rheum rhaponticum L.)’PC49′ by Y Zhao, Y Zhou, BWW Grout – Scientia horticulturae, 2008 – Elsevier