Rhubarb as a starter vegetable

As growing your own fruit and vegetables becomes a more tempting way of obtaining healthy food, would-be gardeners often look for a nice easy starter veg to ease them in gently.

Rhubarb is an excellent starter veg that offers some versatility in the kitchen.

It can be used in the obvious rhubarb pie or eaten raw with sugar or custard for a tasty desert, or can be made into a delicious smoothie, salad, soup or even bread.

The easiest way to grow rhubarb is to get your hands on a one-year-old plant and place it in a fertile, free-draining soil that is partially shaded.

Now is a good time to plant the vegetable but be sure to dig in plenty of well rotted manure or compost before you plant, as it will not tolerate disturbance once established, according to the BBC website.

When the leaves have died down, spread a new layer of compost around the plant to conserve water and suppress weeds.

Finally, be sure to divide the plants every five or six years during late winter to ensure they continue to grow healthily.