Spring is here and our annual forced rhubarb crop is in full harvest. The tradition of ‘forcing’ rhubarb originated in the caves of France in the late 1700s. Forcing rhubarb was quite popular in Canada in the early 1900s, but now Lennox Farm is one of the only forced rhubarb producers left in Ontario.

On the farm, we have four rhubarb buildings that house approximately 20 000 rhubarb plants. Forced rhubarb is grown in these buildings from February through May. Forced rhubarb grows in the dark without light or soil. It is ‘forced’ from the root, as it searches for light. Growing in the dark allows the stalk to take on a bright pink colour and a less tart or bitter flavour. Forced rhubarb can be identified by its tender, bright pink stalk and small, yellow leaves. Every few days, each rhubarb stalk is carefully picked by hand. The rhubarb is graded and packaged for sale in stick form. Forced rhubarb can ordered online at lennoxfarm.ca or purchased on the farm at our self-serve market.

Forced rhubarb is an extremely unique, delicious, and versatile vegetable. We are always experimenting with new rhubarb recipes and we can’t wait to share them with you!