Red, red wine

Ravishing red rhubarb

Someone should invent an air freshener that smells like rhubarb. Our house smells deliciously fruity tonight, as I’ve got big buckets of rhubarb steeping in boiling water on the kitchen floor. I’ve just started my first batch of rhubarb wine (hic!) and fizzy but alcohol-free rhubarb champagne. I bought four bunches of red-stemmed rhubarb from Stella Christoffersen of Running Brook Seeds at the Clevedon Farmers’ Market this morning, which I’ve supplemented with a couple of kilograms of my own fat greenish-red rhubarb. (The really red stuff is hard to come by unless you know a friend with an old clump, as most of the plants sold in garden centres these days, despite being labelled as ‘Victoria’, tend to ripen to pale red at best).

I’ve got a big bed of rhubarb by our front door that’s looking huge and healthy. (I wrote about why it’s looking so good in my Good Life column in NZ Gardener a couple of months back. All I’ll say is that my formerly miserable-looking patch of rhubarb had a sudden revival in fortunes following a stag do involving beer, boys and their bladders. Click here to read more.)

3 thoughts on “Red, red wine

  1. Hi Lynda, must be that time of the year – I’ve been making rhubarb chutney today – and agree with you, where are those luscious red stemmed rhubarbs, I too have a crop of pinky/green – but those chunky red stems are to die for, or at the very least, commit a crime!!

    Don’t have enough live stock, but last year fed my rhubarb alpaca poo and it certainly liked that – any suggestions for a non rural gal for feeding, apart from sheep pellets and the occasional wilted old comfrey leaf or two. I just admire your constitution – with lugging your baby belly around, writing your columns making apple dumplings etc you put the rest of us to shame.

    • I had a great red rhubarb plant in my city garden but moved it and killed it (oops).

      You could chuck some Yates Dynamic Lifter on it – it’s a stinky blend of chicken poo and fish and sheep pellets (I think). As for my constitution, I think I’m just procrastinating from getting a nursery sorted 🙂

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