The Gardeners' Chronicle p. 14 (Jan 3, 1903)
Archibald Smith, Boston, Mass.

In a recent number of your valued paper, I noticed some remarks regarding the New Winter Rhubarb that had been exhibited by different parties and under different names at the Drill Hall exhibition. In a number of the Horticultural Advertiser, of more recent date, there appeared a clipping from your paper on the subject. I suspected that the Rhubarb offered as Sutton's Crimson, Topp's Winter, and what we have in the States under the name of Crimson Winter, were the same. I sent on the clipping to Luther Burbank, of Santa Rosa, Cal., for his opinion, and am just in receipt of his reply, which reads as follows:

“Yours just received with the clipping from the Horticultural Advertiser. All the Rhubarb mentioned is without any doubt Topp's Australian Crimson Winter Rhubarb. Topp's Crimson Winter or Crimson Winter, is the name it goes by in Australia and New Zealand. I introduced it to America about eight years ago, and have sent much of it to England, among the parties being some of those mentioned in the clipping. I enclose circular describing it.”

This communication may be of interest, and I trust it will suggest the propriety of seed and plant dealers continuing to offer varieties under the names given them by the originators. These much multiplied synonyms, are both harmful and expensive.

It may not be out of place to mention that Mr. Burbank advises me that he has raised from the Topp's Australian Crimson Winter Rhubarb, “a new hybrid variety bearing stalks about six times as large, and in flavour surpassing any Rhubarb ever known.” It is not yet for sale.

Burbank: Winter Rhubarb (1914)

Rhubarb Bibliography