Rhubarb Forcers, Red Terra Cotta


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We normally only offer Rhubarb Forcers once a year as part of our Early Spring Preorder, but have had so many requests this spring, that we decided to add them to our Late Spring Preorder as well.

Rhubarb Forcers are familiar to English gardeners, but not as much to their cousins here in America. A rhubarb forcer is used to jump start rhubarb in the early spring, when the nights are still cold. Covering the rhubarb shoots when they first emerge will keep them from getting damaged by frost. During the day, the lid is left off to let the plant get some sunlight, but not too much. Depriving the plant of sunlight decreases the photosynthesis, which keeps the rhubarb pale, and also makes it stretch to get more sunlight. The result is a more delicate stalk that has less bitterness than non-forced rhubarb. For folks who don't grow rhubarb, the shape is a nice piece of garden ornament that speaks to an earlier time. 

Rhubarb Forcers are some of the most labor intensive pieces I make, but they're also very satisfying to make. It is a multi-step process that takes 3-4 days to complete the steps.  It's rare to find a studio potter in the USA who is making these.

You can find a few videos of the steps involved on my Instagram page, using the links below:

Rhubarb Forcer Step #1

Rhubarb Forcer Step #2

Rhubarb Forcer Step #3


  • Handthrown by Peter in Rockdale, Wisconsin
  • Traditional red terracotta, fired to 1950° F.
  • Frostproof from delamination due to temperatures below freezing. However, if water or damp soil collects in the pot and freezes solid, the pot may crack.
  • For outdoor use, but should be stored inside during winter months to ensure maximum years of use.
Dimensions (In)
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Care Guide
This pot was fired to 2000 degrees Fahrenheit, but care should be taken to not leave the pot outdoors in freezing temperatures.