Varieties of Rhubarb...

Listed in usual order of harvest in Yorkshire - temperature dependant.

 

TIMPERLEY EARLY.
One of the earliest commercial varieties, very popular, having a good flavour. Widely grown for early production, with a good colour, but will grow green in warm temperatures if you let it Early-Mid April start to harvest outdoors. First early forcing variety. Medium yields

 

STOCKBRIDGE HARBINGER.
Closely follows the above variety. Erect stick with good early colour but soon goes green outdoors. Excellent blood red colour when forced. Excellent flavour, but its exacting growth and harvesting requirements, result in this variety not been widely grown commercially. Best left to the experts, or if you like a challenge, then given care in a forcing shed in my opinion nothing to match it early season. Modern variety. Medium yields.

 

REEDS EARLY SUPERB.
Regarded as being the same as Fenton’s Special. (Growers often claimed new varieties, when in fact they were simply variations of a particular type.) Follows Harbinger. Up until the development of Harb. Reeds was the first early variety with deep colour when forced. Easily distinguished by its slightly earthy flavour when forced Retains its colour better than most early outdoor varieties.

 

STOCKBRIDGE ARROW.
Main crop variety. Early to mid May first harvest. Outstanding modern variety, excellent flavour and colour. Holds its colour longer outdoors than most. Excellent quality of stick. High yields. Easily recognised in a forcing shed by its arrow head shaped leaf and blood red stick. We regard this variety as THE most important new variety for quality and yield. An excellent all round performer, a must for every garden, still to be beaten.

 

QUEEN VICTORIA.
Main crop to late, first harvest mid to late May. Excellent flavour, strong bold sticks. Very heavy yields. Older variety still retained for use due to flavour and exceptional yields. Excellent for forcing although in the garden situation an early variety is preferable for blanching. This variety is a favourite in Scotland, or by people who like to make their own jams, due to the flavour it gives. Not suitable for growing in tubs as it forms a large root. I am often asked if rhubarb can be grown in a tub by house holders who only have patio areas. The answer is yes if you must, but will you remember to water it sufficiently enough, especially in high temperatures, and it must be a big tub to accommodate the root as it grows. It will require splitting regularly every couple of years once established, and you must understand your plants needs.

Choose Timperley for container growing,
it will adapt better.

 

CAWOOD DELIGHT.
Autumn 2006 Outstanding colour, deep red stick, even upon reaching its full growth potential, even extending up into the fleshy ‘veins ‘ of the leaf.Colour ‘bleeds’ into the flesh and quickly colours it red, so the deep colour of forced rhubarb is obtained with an outdoor grown stick, which makes it excellent for cooking. The higher fibre levels in the stick helps it hold togetherbetter when cooked. Very good flavour. Not suitable for forcing. An outstanding late variety harvesting from late May, but its low yields do not make it suitable for commercial growers. Much sought after by gardeners although rarely obtainable to purchase. Unfortunately all good things have a draw back, - it’s the most difficult to grow, so not for the beginner. It propagates only very slowly, which makes it a little more expensive than the rest. Due to the hot summer 3 years ago we protected our stocks of this superb variety, and it will be obtainable for mail order again in Autumn 2006