Fellow gardeners...I need help! Stupid @$#*%!* dang wild rubarb!

Discussion in 'Random Ramblings' started by 4H kids and mom, Jun 28, 2007.

  1. 4H kids and mom

    4H kids and mom Cooped Up

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    Mar 10, 2007
    Southern Wisconsin
    Argh. I am so frustrated! This is the first time I have ever planted anything from SEED and had it sprout and thrive, and now I'm being challenged! :mad:

    I have a plot roughly 8' x 12' that was growing wild. I pulled up all the wild rubarb, mowed over what was left, dug out all the remaining tubars, tilled the whole plot, fertilized it, etc. before planting. I know I'd killed all those darned things. So, I planted the plot with sweet corn, pumpkin, watermelon, chic peas, squash, and sun flowers. Within a week or so, everything was sprouting nicely and I was quite pleased with myself.

    But now the dang rubarb keeps popping up (and I dont mean one or two here and there, I mean EVERYWHERE like a hostile takeover!) and threatening my lovely crops! I've had to stake a few of my sweet corn (now about 2.5 feet tall) because the stupid rubarb keeps pushing them over. I keep pulling out the new rubarb chutes, but I can't get in to dig out the tubars for fear of ruining the rest of whats growing there. I am so mad. :mad: I have to go out every other day and weed those stupid rubarb out again. Its getting to be a royal pain in my arse! [​IMG] :mad:

    Is there anything I can do (now or in the future) to prevent this? Is there any way to get rid of the stupid stuff once and for all? Is the rubarb going to ruin my first (and BEST) gardening efforts? I have worked so hard...and the kids are both wanting to take some produce to the fair next month as one of their 4H projects. My daughter is planning on the sweet corn. Please HELP! I'm at my wits end!
     
  2. MissPrissy

    MissPrissy Overrun With Chickens Premium Member

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    May 7, 2007
    Forks, Virginia
    If the tubar is large and you can't dig it out you could try using a root and stump killer. Using an old kitchen syringe (like you use to inject turkeys and chickens with butter and spices before baking - you know the metal needle thingy) inject the stump killer directly into the root. If you don't have the kitchen syringe you could drill a hole in the root and carefully fill it with stump and root killer.

    I have had to do this to VINES that grow 3 or 4 inches circumference and had twined themselves into the 95 year old boxwoods in front of my house. They had been left over grown so long that the vines was killing the bush. It worked perfectly. Now there is no vine and a vibrant bush.

    I know how frustrating it can be to work so hard in a garden and have to continually fight unwanted plants.

    Do you have another patch for rhubarb?

    While it is a pest where it is growing in your garden it is a wonderful plant to have for pies and jam and especially in strawberry season. The leaves are poisonous but it is the red stems that are the treat.
     
  3. 4H kids and mom

    4H kids and mom Cooped Up

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    Mar 10, 2007
    Southern Wisconsin
    We have used some of the "pest" plant in a recent strawberry rubarb pie I made that got rave reviews from the family. I do have a patch that I am letting some grow, but they keep poppin up where I DONT want them..lol [​IMG] I have an all natural product similar to a weed-be-gone made by CockaDoodle-DOO. I'll try injecting the root and tubar and see if that helps some. I just want my corn! lol [​IMG]
     
  4. MarkR

    MarkR Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Mar 11, 2007
    Ivy, Virginia
    This won't help now, but in the future. . .

    If I'm planting something that might be invasive (purslane, borage, rhubarb, and mint are just a few examples), I only plant them in a boxed raised bed. They're much easier to control then. Roots and runners are contained by the box. Seeds can still spread with birds or in the wind, but plants are a lot easier to control when they are contained. My boxes tend to be 8' long and either 2' or 4' wide depending on whether I remembered to buy enough lumber (I never do). I use untreated 2 x 8's. I know a lot of people use treated wood but I'm not taking chances with food. They're filled with top soil and compost (my own) in about a 3:2 ratio. You can add sand or peat moss depending on what you're planting and that particular plants moisture requirements.

    Here's the important part, don't put your box on top of something invasive. You won't kill it. It will keep coming back.

    As for this year, start canning and start baking pies. I haven't grown rhubarb in a few years, but I have baked about 12 loaves of zucchini bread and 5 or 6 batches of zucchini/chocolate chip cookies this year. I don't know why I keep planting that stuff.

    Mark

    PS People around here will pay a lot for rhubarb, maybe you should plow the corn under and bring the rhubarb to the fair. . . just a thought.

    PPS You might try spraying the rhubarb leaves with strong vinegar. It will take repeated applications to kill it, and you'll need to be careful not to get ANY of it on your other plants, but eventually, the rhubarb might stop.

    PPPS Why didn't I answer your question until my second PS?!!?!?!?!?! Too much coffee, too much time out in the sun, and not enough water, I guess.
     

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