Eric Liskey

Goes good with Strawberries

I try to mix edibles in with ornamentals as much as I can. Of course, not every edible is the kind of plant you want in the middle of your nice flower bed. A large tomato vine in a tomatoe cage is NOT a nice addition to the flower garden. But many edibles are quite attractive, and one of the better ones is rhubarb. It’s a fairly robust perennial, with enormous leaves and an interesting flower stalk in emerges in spring—gigantic, just like the leaves.

Rhubarb is one of those things you can’t just pick and eat; you have to know what to do with it. My wife makes an outstanding rhubarb/strawberry recipe, so I’m fortunate—all I have to  do is grow the stuff, which isn’t all that hard. Although you can harvest only once or twice a year, you can freeze the stems for later use. So try some rhubarb—it’s a good one for the perennial border, and it’s hardy to Zone 3, so you can grow it darn near anywhere (though it may not work so well in Zone 10).

These plants below came from Bonnie, which supplies many of the big box stores. So it’s not an exotic, hard-to-find plant. Make some space for one in your garden. You’ll love how it looks.

Rhubarb early in spring, with funky red buds.

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