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Old 04-14-2014, 05:52 PM   #11
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Originally Posted by LeftyRighty View Post
my other hobby garden is growing tobacco. I've built a 'fermenter' used to advance the aging process after the tobacco has been cured. Got 5 years experience with it.
Specifically, it's an old upright freezer, vented, with electronic control of the heat source. The heat source is a crockpot, providing both heat and humidity for malting; or a dry crockpot for heat to dry the grain. I have not worked all the technical/practical bugs yet for malting, but am confident that I can make it work.
Yeah.....home grown beer and smokes....what a great life !
Sounds like a great project. It should be interesting to follow along with you.
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Old 04-14-2014, 05:56 PM   #12
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Barley is not like winter wheat you don't plant it in the fall. Its like oats you plant in the spring. In Michigan you plant in may and harvest in Aug.

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Old 04-14-2014, 06:17 PM   #13
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following

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Old 04-14-2014, 06:19 PM   #14
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Before you start growing your barley, it would be worth reading this article on Fusarium. I just took a malting class yesterday and a good portion of the class was spent talking about the disease and its impact on barley meant for malting in either brewing or distillation. The malt house ALWAYS sends a sample of their grain from the farmer for a test of the disease before accepting a grain shipment.

While you are doing a much smaller batch, I think it is still worth a read, especially if you get a batch grown and malted and wind up with a batch of gushing beer.

http://morebeer.com/brewingtechniques/bmg/gudmestad.html

Good luck! I hope you are successful with your endeavours!

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Old 04-14-2014, 08:44 PM   #15
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You've inspired me sir. I just ordered a pound of Robust barley seed. I'm hoping for ten pounds of 6-row come harvest time to make some pre-prohibition, Classic American pilsner.


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Old 07-20-2014, 11:54 PM   #16
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update on my progress....
Got an 1 oz Lacey barley seed packet from Sustainable Seed Co., grew it this spring, just finished harvesting it, got about one+ pound of good grain. I'll plant about half my garden with it next spring.
Also got 5# of Robust seed from Fedco. The other half of the garden.
So, next year is good. Both are spring-grown barley's.

One thing that has baffled me - the availability of barley strains is very limited or virtually unknown. I've only found maybe 1/2 dozen known strains that one can buy online. Most of seed offered is by commercial/farmer supply sources, and when you ask, they have no idea what strain it is. I don't buy into the "barley is barley, it all makes good brew". I understand that each strain is what's been developed for particular areas, based on climate, soil, insect and disease resistance. Most of the data available requires an AG or horticulture degree to understand.

From internet research, there are over 2,000 strains that have been grown in the USA. But to find info and sources is nearly impossible, let alone what would be good for home gardens, or paricular unique beers.

I did find that I can get seeds from NPGS/GRIN. http://www.ars-grin.gov/npgs/acc/acc_queries.html This is the national seed bank, who periodically regrow the accession to keep viable seed available, primarily for institutional, universities, or research facilities. While they will make seed available to individuals, it is very limited, and will be cut off if demand is excessive. I did get a 10 gram packet (~140 seeds) of Maris Otter (PI 410858). The original accession is from the UK, 1976. I figure it will take me about 3 years of successive growth to have enough seed for a good crop.

Oh, yeah, I know....I can buy malted barley for half of what it will probably cost to grow-my-own, then there is all the effort into planting, growing, harvesting, threshing, winnowing, drying, malting etc. But it is a "I did it my way" thingy, and I can truely say it is 100% home brew, in every way.

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Old 07-21-2014, 12:17 AM   #17
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Check with local sport shops. They may know some people that have seeders that are towed by an ATV for deer and turkey food plots.

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Old 07-21-2014, 12:36 AM   #18
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Hell Yeah!!! I wanna grow my own barley!!!


Oh wait...

I'm super lazy, and usually a bit drunk.

Never mind.

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Old 08-20-2014, 12:37 AM   #19
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This is great information. Thank you for sharing. I recently started growing my own hops and this looks like my next endeavor.

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