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-   -   Hop Growing in So Cal anyone? (http://www.homebrewtalk.com/f12/hop-growing-so-cal-anyone-52812/)

gonzo brewer 01-27-2008 04:53 PM

Hop Growing in So Cal anyone?
 
I am seriously considering growing hops in North Los Angeles County (Santa Clarita).
I am in zone 18 (Western Garden) and have a East facing slope area. My soil is a little clayey, but can amend the heck out of it and get some good drainage - no problem.

Has anyone been successful growing in this climate? I'm thinking of planting in late Feb, which should be safe from any frost.

derogg 01-28-2008 09:30 PM

I live in south Orange county and was thinking of the same thing. I know a guy who grows some, but I have yet to discuss this with him in detail. I think if you have a nice sunny area, and keep them watered you should be fine. - Dirk

APendejo 01-28-2008 10:33 PM

Many years ago my uncle who lived in Anaheim grew hops on a trellis on the west side of the house, he said he made tea with them. I didn't really understand what they were back then but when I would rub the little cones in my hands they sure smelled like some other thing I was familiar with at the time.
AP

gonzo brewer 01-29-2008 04:46 AM

Thats what I'm thinking. I would hook up a drip system to take care of vacation times.
I'll let you know if I follow up this season.

gwood 01-29-2008 04:59 AM

I've often wondered how well they'd do out here too. Hops sure love sun so we have that one checked off the list and as you mentioned, soil is an easy fix. Temps are really the key IMO. It gets so damn hot in the summer.

If you could ensure good root growth with regular watering and good soil structure I'd venture to say that you'd have some hops in a couple of years. I've read that Cascade might be a good choice for our area and have been thinking about it more and more as of late (tis that time of year), the issue I would have is rigging up 20ft of vertical space!

gonzo brewer 01-29-2008 01:21 PM

I just got a tig welder at harbor freight. I have 1.3 acres, so space is not an issue.

I just need to design the poles and braces. I'm think to plant 4-6 different varietals along a line about 25 feet long. Steel braced poles (about 20' high) at each end and plastic coated wire for the span.

gwood 01-29-2008 06:30 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by gonzo brewer
I just got a tig welder at harbor freight. I have 1.3 acres, so space is not an issue.

I just need to design the poles and braces. I'm think to plant 4-6 different varietals along a line about 25 feet long. Steel braced poles (about 20' high) at each end and plastic coated wire for the span.

I have a decent sized yard but really don't have anything to take advantage of in terms of vertical support. I suppose I could just sink a massive 4x4 into the ground but it seems silly. The other thought I had was to rig the lines to a telephone poll but I'm not sure that is legal.

Bobby_M 01-29-2008 06:36 PM

Put some eye hooks up high on the house and string heavy twine or cable to stakes in the ground near where you plan. They'll climb that.

raceskier 01-29-2008 06:37 PM

My LHBS (Culver City Home Brewing Supply Co.) has a number of different hop bines going every year. They are in planters behind the store. They have cables from the planters to the top of the second story building and train the bines up the cables. Give them a call and ask about varieties. I don't remember exactly which ones they grow.

Germey 01-29-2008 06:47 PM

The Nov/Dec issue of Zymurgy has an article talking about a "wall of hops" stating that very good yields can be had just growing the plants like a hedge or a bush.
If I do it, I am planning to have them grow across my back fence. That is pretty much my only option with the HOA (that other SoCal buzzkiller)


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