The Craft Project

What Do You Do With 50 Pounds of Rhubarb?

Week One

My mother-in-law is moving away from Whitehorse this week.  As we help her clean up the house and property we’re finding a number of things that she would like us to save (a slightly tricky situation as our apartment doesn’t have that much space to store salvaged items).  One of these important items is the rhubarb plant.

This is not your typical rhubarb plant though.  Well okay it is your typical rhubarb plant – massive, grows like a weed – but it has historical significance.  This rhubarb plant was carried over the Chilkoot Pass in 1898 during the Klondike Gold Rush.  This rhubarb plant is a living piece of Yukon history – and God forbid that Yukon history falls into the hands of the people buying the house.

Okay – so how do we deal with this?

Step 1: Find somewhere to move the plant to.

As I mentioned Tyler and I are in an apartment, and although I have managed to grow over 60 heirloom tomato and pepper plants from seed on our living room floor, even I have to admit that there is no way we can fit in a giant rhubarb plant.  Luckily my parent’s have the mother-of-all Yukon gardens (I’m convinced that they are passed the property line and planting in the green belt, but my father admantly claims the opposite) and they managed to point out a bit of unused soil by the strawberry patch where we can move the plant to.

Step 2: Move the plant

As I mentioned this particular rhubard plant is massive, and very well established, meaning that is has a very deep tap root and is not so easy to dig out of the ground.  In order to even consider moving it I needed to harvest most of the rhubarb stalk (I figured I could preserve it as my Week One Project).  There was a lot more rhubarb than what I bargined for – I filled a giant black garbage bag with it – in fact I ended up with 50 pounds of rhubarb!  We then took a slew of slovels and pry bars to the plant to get it out of the ground (we only lost one shovel to the fight).  After some excessive amounts of effort the rhubarb was out of the ground and safely enroute to it’s new home and I was left standing with a full garbage bag and the question:

What do you do with 50 pounds of rhubarb?

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