Get your HBT Growlers, Shirts and Membership before the Rush!


Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > Hops Growing > 100% homegrown
Reply
 
LinkBack Thread Tools
Old 04-12-2012, 04:08 AM   #121
fifelee
HBT_SUPPORTER.png
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
 
fifelee's Avatar
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Dec 2006
Location: Vaughn, MT
Posts: 1,105
Liked 35 Times on 24 Posts
Likes Given: 12

Default

We have clay soil as well and generally calculate a foot of soil holds 2" water. More organic mater will hold more. The top foot will evaporate quicker so I wouldn't count on a full 2"there.

__________________
fifelee is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 04-12-2012, 06:53 PM   #122
drummstikk
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: May 2010
Location: Palo Alto
Posts: 254
Liked 24 Times on 18 Posts
Likes Given: 27

Default

Great! That is extremely helpful.

__________________
drummstikk is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 04-12-2012, 11:19 PM   #123
rexbanner
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Nov 2008
Location: DC
Posts: 1,378
Liked 95 Times on 68 Posts
Likes Given: 91

Default

Just planted 1000 sq ft of merit.

__________________

Peep my nanobrewery: http://crookedrunbrewing.com

Crooked Run Brewing: Traditional ales, local ingredients

rexbanner is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 04-13-2012, 12:54 AM   #124
drummstikk
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: May 2010
Location: Palo Alto
Posts: 254
Liked 24 Times on 18 Posts
Likes Given: 27

Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by rexbanner View Post
Just planted 1000 sq ft of merit.
Good on ya! Post your updates here -- will be so psyched to see how it's going.
__________________
drummstikk is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 04-17-2012, 06:24 AM   #125
drummstikk
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: May 2010
Location: Palo Alto
Posts: 254
Liked 24 Times on 18 Posts
Likes Given: 27

Default

I really need to figure out when my barley will be ready to harvest. I need an estimate to tell the corn people, because they need the field soon.

The answer depends on accurately assigning a stage to the developing grain heads. The information available on barley plant development is not great, and the info on kernel development is even worse, crappy even! Most extension websites will list the stages of growth but assume you already know what they mean. I'm looking at you, Minnesota!

Anyway, here's roughly what happens after heads emerge. Once the whole head is out, kernels begin flowering from the center of the head outward toward the bottom and top. Then, the grain grows from a small embryo at the bottom of the kernel to a full-length grain. This time of growth covers the stages from "watery ripe" to "milk"

Why those names? The defining feature of watery and milk stages is that when you crush the grain, a bunch of liquid comes out. The liquid is supposed to be clear in the beginning, and then become milky, hence the names. I noticed this change in liquid color, but I thought the grain growth was more significant.

Now, when I crush grains from my most advanced tillers, out comes a soft wet clump of starch, much like the jelly in the bottom of a bubble tea.



You can see that nasty-looking (but delicous -- you bet I ate it) thing, covered in a generous amount of milky liquid.

Despite the copious fluid, I believe this constitutes the transition from a "milk" stage to a "dough" stage, because the stuff is becoming solid. Can anyone else comment on the kernel stage based on that photo?

Here's another clue: the grains are becoming plump.



They still crush with a fingernail, but it's a huge change from the soft planty feel the heads have had until now. Getting plump seems to be the way to distinguish late from early soft dough kernels.

Here's yet another way to measure: GDD since heading. I noticed lots of awns appearing in an entry dated March 8. Since that date, there have been 563 GDD. It took Merit's kernels on the main stem (most advanced tiller), about the same amount of GDD, 537, to reach late soft dough stage.

Please set me straight if you know better, but I'm going to proceed assuming that I'm in late soft dough.

Now to predict the future: I can harvest once kernels reach physiological maturity, right after late hard, not soft, dough stage. Merit kernels were at late hard dough at 1028 GDD after heading. I will hit this mark, according to weather.com's GDD predictor, on May 10. The next week, Merit was at the "kernel hard" stage of ripening, which is after the point when it's ok to harvest. This took 1284 GDD since heading, and I should reach that mark on May 22.

Friends, this is joyous news! If I'm right, at least some of the tillers will bear maltable grains between May 10 and May 22. The corn people need the field by "mid-May" so I'm calling May 22 close enough. Yes!

Now, it's a little more complicated than that, because most farmers stop irrigating sometime before the harvest. This, paradoxically, speeds maturity. Lynn Gallagher, malting barley breeder at UC Davis, explains:

As the late tillers die a certain percentage of the
photosynthate is re-mobilized and sent to stronger, earlier tillers. C14
studies have been done on this about 30 years ago. It is only natural that
when the water is cut off the late developing tillers die. Sometimes as
many as 50% of the total tiller number per plant may die and produce
nothing. If the planting density is optimal late tillers may not develop
because of shading. Usually but not always the maitre brin (MB) is the
strongest tiller - that is the main stem. T1 thru Tn usually become less
productive than MB.
To sum up, there is a tradeoff between yield and maturity date, and this tradeoff is controlled by available water. The U Idaho blog, for example, recommends stopping irrigation back in the early soft dough stage.

What to do? Well, it would not be worth the risk to try to increase yield by continuing to irrigate, only to end up with a bunch of underdeveloped and unmaltable grains come mid-May. There is still 9-11" of moist soil, which in my loamy clay is probably less than 2" of water (thanks Ryan). It will be highs of 60's to 70's for the next week, so if those temps continue, I can expect my plants in soft dough to use .1-.13" of water per day. That means there is 17 days of water in the field -- less if evaporation is higher in the top foot of soil as Ryan suggested, and more if the plants begin to use less water as they enter hard dough.

17 days of water in the ground -- I frankly have no idea what to do with that number. But I can at least say that I won't run out of water in the next week. Decision: I won't resume irrigation for now (it was already off because of last week's rain), and I'll see how the plants respond as the water is depleted. I really need those late tillers to die, so I'll be watching them carefully over the next week.

There we go. Feeling a bit more in control.
__________________
drummstikk is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 04-17-2012, 09:27 AM   #126
Reno_eNVy
HBT_SUPPORTER.png
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
 
Reno_eNVy's Avatar
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Oct 2008
Location: Reno, Nevada
Posts: 6,267
Liked 200 Times on 169 Posts
Likes Given: 68

Default

Sad to say I don't have any advice but this is an awesome thread. I can't believe I just came across it.

Good luck!

__________________
Primary: air and sadness =(

Kegged: air and sadness =(

Bottled: English Barleywine (brewed 9/26/09 -- bottled 5/5/10)


LET'S GO LA!
LA CAMPEONES!
PLAY FOR GLORY, THE GLORY LA!
Reno_eNVy is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 04-18-2012, 09:54 AM   #127
jgln
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: May 2008
Location: Southern, NJ
Posts: 3,498
Liked 53 Times on 41 Posts
Likes Given: 3

Default

Ever watch the TV show on RFTV called Ag Phd? Pretty cool show if you are into this stuff. Two farmers who are brothers host the show and talk about all aspects of farming crops. They even have a quiz called "Weed of the Week" where you try and guess the weed. lol

__________________
jgln is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 04-18-2012, 03:49 PM   #128
fifelee
HBT_SUPPORTER.png
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
 
fifelee's Avatar
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Dec 2006
Location: Vaughn, MT
Posts: 1,105
Liked 35 Times on 24 Posts
Likes Given: 12

Default

Sorry I haven't replied quicker. Been farming myself. We will be planting a about five hundred acres of barley this year. Will try it post some pictures.

Drumm, You have a better grasp on the plants life cycle then me (I've never even used the GDD data) so I bet you are better then me at figuring out when to harvest. I just bit a few kernels and if they crunch we pull out the combine.

Sounds like you have a good plan and enough water in the ground. If someone else needs the field then I would hold of on watering (maybe give it a quick shot if you have a really hot day). You can kill the green tillers with Roundup a week or so before harvest. Another way to get the crop off a few days sooner would be to cut the crop off and lay it in shallow piles in another area to ripen. Of course do this after the majority of the kernels reach the hard stage. Watch the weather as rain on your piles is bad. Great thread as always. Looking forward to the pictures of your harvest.

__________________
fifelee is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 04-18-2012, 03:52 PM   #129
fifelee
HBT_SUPPORTER.png
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
 
fifelee's Avatar
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Dec 2006
Location: Vaughn, MT
Posts: 1,105
Liked 35 Times on 24 Posts
Likes Given: 12

Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by jgln View Post
Ever watch the TV show on RFTV called Ag Phd? Pretty cool show if you are into this stuff. Two farmers who are brothers host the show and talk about all aspects of farming crops. They even have a quiz called "Weed of the Week" where you try and guess the weed. lol
Yes the Hefty Brothers. Those guys have helped me become a better farmer. This last conference they held in our are must have had 1000 farmers attend. Never seen so many pickup trucks in my life.
__________________
fifelee is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 04-18-2012, 04:22 PM   #130
drummstikk
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: May 2010
Location: Palo Alto
Posts: 254
Liked 24 Times on 18 Posts
Likes Given: 27

Default

Haha, this show is amazing! Thanks for the tip, jgln. Watching it, I've never felt so nerdy and so ...rugged at the same time. I probably could have just watched through these archives instead of pestering you poor folks all season.

Ryan, thanks! 500 acres -- that's a whole lot of beer!! Definitely looking forward to your pics.

__________________
drummstikk is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Reply



Quick Reply
Message:
Options
Thread Tools


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Homegrown coriander Clonefarmer Hops Growing 10 06-24-2012 11:04 AM
Just used my first homegrown hops. Fingers Hops Growing 9 10-26-2009 11:44 PM
Using Homegrown Hops slayer84 Hops Growing 5 08-13-2009 03:07 AM
How do you use homegrown hops? HBRunner Hops Growing 18 06-29-2008 01:01 PM
Dry Hop with Homegrown? Smogre Hops Growing 5 03-19-2008 08:24 PM



Newest Threads

LATEST SPONSOR DEALS