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Old 03-23-2009, 07:02 PM   #1
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Default Container Hop growing question

I am going to try and grow some hops this year. I am going to be doing it in containers. Here are my ???'s

1.I was thinking of using those plastic Keg Shells that have the rope handles on them. I think that they are better than 20gal. I am thinking I should drill some holes in them for drainage?

2. What type of Potting Soil do people generally use: Brand Style? Is there any type to avoid?

3. When is the best time to Plant in the Denver Metro area? I am in Arvada

4. Do any Denver locals use a drip system to irrigate? If so which one?

TIA

Zman

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Old 03-23-2009, 07:48 PM   #2
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Definitely put holes in! The soil needs excellent drainage so have holes on the bottom and around the sides at the bottom.

Hops like the soil pH to be between 6.0 and 6.2. Most soils will state the pH range on the bag. Most I looked at though state a wide range, like 5.5-7.0 so if you're real worried about it buy a pH meter and then adjust the soil accordingly.

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Old 03-26-2009, 10:22 PM   #3
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Hi bud,
Their is a great article on this in this months edition of BYO (Brew Your Own). I'm going to try container gardening this summer. I hear that the ryhizomes really need a huge amount of space.

BYO suggests The following --
Use at least a 20" pot
Thoroughly drench your plants
Feed the plants slowly and steadily low doses of fertilizer
Limit the above ground growth to only what the root system can support (IE don't over fertilize).

I would suggest to use potting soil only in each pot and to use a standard potting mix and not one that has any water holding additives in it. Don't put any stones in the bottom of the pots either. That limits the waters ability to drain properly. Where as potting mix is engineered to drain properly and the more soil you use the larger you can allow your plants to get.

I would highly recomend getting a copy of BYO (March April 2009). That article is very handy. -- Brew Your Own: The How-To Homebrew Beer Magazine - home page.

Good luck!

Cheers ,

Joe

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Old 03-27-2009, 02:21 PM   #4
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If you go here you can read the entire article for free.

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Old 03-30-2009, 02:08 PM   #5
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I planted each of mine in a wine barrel half, which should be around 30 gallons in size. I drilled 10-15 1/2 inch holes in the bottom for drainage and filled the barrel with miracle grow potting soil (about 3.5-4 cubic feet per barrel). I planted 2 rhizomes of the same variety in each barrel, in a little trench about 1-2 inches below the surface. All 4 of my varieties have sprouted and are coming up now and have been in the soil for less than a week

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Old 03-30-2009, 03:12 PM   #6
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I also used half wine barrels last year. I drilled a lot small holes in the bottom, layered in some coarse gravel, then put some weekblock cloth on top before filling with potting soil, composted manure, and peat moss.

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Old 04-05-2009, 08:59 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bobby_M View Post
I also used half wine barrels last year. I drilled a lot small holes in the bottom, layered in some coarse gravel, then put some weekblock cloth on top before filling with potting soil, composted manure, and peat moss.
A layer of gravel in the bottom of a container will actually inhibit drainage, not improve it. This is because the water holding capacity of gravel is so low that the potting soil mixture must become completely saturated before water will flow from the potting soil mix to the gravel. It would be better to have a consistent mix of soil in the entire container. Then you would want the holes in the bottom of the container touching soil if possible. This will aid in drainage as the water holding capacity of your potting mix and the given soil at your location will be closer together than your potting mix and coarse gravel.
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Old 05-11-2009, 12:03 AM   #8
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IF I am planting in 19gal. containers what would be considered "drenching"?

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Old 05-11-2009, 05:28 AM   #9
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Quote:
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IF I am planting in 19gal. containers what would be considered "drenching"?
You want the soil to be moist throughout the day, not dried out. It really depends on your climate whether you water more or less, but go for a moist soil.
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Old 05-11-2009, 01:47 PM   #10
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I used Miracle Gro potting mix and I find that it drains so well, that within a few minutes of watering, I often have puddles forming at the bottom of my container. I think if your soil drains well, it is next to impossible to over water.

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