Medicinally, I suspect that any lucky family associated with a Rhubarb plant during a famine, as in The Great Depression, was spared the horrible effects of Scurvy because of Rhubarb's high Vitamin C content. Very few could afford exotic Oranges and Lemons at the time. Scurvy is a horrible disease which is directly caused by a lack of Vitamin C. Humans cannot make Vitamin C for themselves and must get it through their food.
A member of the Buckwheat family, this vegetable is low in Saturated Fat and Sodium, and very low in Cholesterol. It is also a good source of Magnesium, Dietary Fiber, Vitamin C, Vitamin K, Calcium, Potassium and Manganese. What more could a Homesteader want from a garden plant after months of dried, frozen and canned food?
It has a wonderful fresh taste at a time of the year when our stored apples have all shriveled and browned beyond edibility. No tree will be producing fruit for another 2 months. But there, in the chill of the very early spring soil are the pink buds of our "Pie Plant" pushing up make it's delicious stalks for the pickin'. Just grab a stalk at the base and pull with a twist. This will break it off in such a way that bacteria and pests will be less likely to enter the plant.
Rhubarb grows from a "rhizome" which is a woody, solid mass. The buds sprout from this crown and if you would like to make more plants, you can take a sharp shovel and slice the crown, keeping at least two buds on each division.
And who wouldn't want more of these generous and tasty plants? Even if you don't have a taste for Rhubarb it makes an impressive, low maintenance and Deer Proof addition to any landscape.
The next spring you will have a beautiful plant to look at and a few stems for your own "Be Bop A Rebop Rhubarb Pie. "