Home Vegetable Gardening Unlocking the Secrets of Rhubarb: A Guide to Collecting Seeds from Flowering Plants

Unlocking the Secrets of Rhubarb: A Guide to Collecting Seeds from Flowering Plants

by Gregory
3 minutes read

Rhubarb: A Rebellious Plant with Hidden Treasures


Rhubarb is a unique plant that can add a touch of rebellion to your garden. Unlike most vegetables, rhubarb produces beautiful flowers that can tempt you to cut them prematurely. But if you resist the urge and let the flowers bloom, you’ll be rewarded with a bountiful harvest of rhubarb seeds.

Why Does Rhubarb Flower?

Rhubarb plants may not flower every year. The likelihood of flowering, also known as bolting, increases with certain factors:

  • Variety: Some rhubarb varieties are more prone to bolting than others.
  • Age: Older rhubarb plants are more likely to flower.
  • Environmental conditions: Heat and drought can trigger rhubarb bolting.

How to Collect Rhubarb Seeds

If your rhubarb plant produces flowers, here’s how to collect the seeds:

  • Wait for the transformation: After the flowers bloom, they will turn into green seed pods. Eventually, these pods will dry out and turn brown.
  • Harvest the seeds: When the seed pods are dry, clip the stalks with snips or break them off by hand.
  • Extract the seeds: Hover the branches over a cookie sheet and run your fingers down the stalk to brush the seeds onto the sheet.
  • Dry and store the seeds: Dry the seeds on the cookie sheet for a week or two. Then, package them and store them in a dark, cool place for up to two years.

Tips for Successful Seed Collection

  • Patience is key: It takes time for the rhubarb flowers to develop into seeds.
  • Don’t cut the flower stalks: Resist the temptation to cut the flower stalks early.
  • Collect from multiple plants: If you have several rhubarb plants, collect seeds from all of them to ensure genetic diversity.

Benefits of Rhubarb Seeds

  • Preserving plant diversity: Collecting and planting rhubarb seeds helps preserve the genetic diversity of different rhubarb varieties.
  • Future plantings: You can use the collected seeds to grow new rhubarb plants in the future.
  • Unique gardening experience: Rebelliously letting your rhubarb flower and collecting the seeds adds a unique dimension to your gardening experience.

Growing Rhubarb as an Ornamental Plant

Rhubarb can be grown strictly for its ornamental value. The flower stalks produce beautiful, long stalks with unfurled flowers at the top. These flowers can add a vibrant touch to your garden.


Rhubarb is a versatile plant that can satisfy both your culinary and aesthetic desires. By embracing the rebellious nature of rhubarb and letting it flower, you can unlock a hidden treasure – rhubarb seeds. Use these seeds to preserve plant diversity, grow new plants, or simply enjoy the beauty of rhubarb flowers in your garden.

You may also like

This website uses cookies to improve your experience. We'll assume you're ok with this, but you can opt-out if you wish. Accept Read More