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Old 10-10-2011, 05:22 AM   #1
BilltownBandit
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Default Get Me started on Hop Growing

I know there is a separate forum for this topic. However, It doesn't get much traffic so I assume I wouldn't get much for a reply.

I just watched the episode on brewing tv where the guys show their hop plants growing in their back yard. Is it really that easy? What does it cost and what steps need to be taken to use your own home grown hops?

Thanks guys!

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Old 10-10-2011, 10:26 AM   #2
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Order in the plants at about $10 each. Plant them a few feet apart since they will grow quite large. Wait.

By year three you'll likely need something for them to climb since they can be dozens of feet high. But, not necessary - a few weks ago I was bicycling along the Danube and saw them growing wild along the ground. They were ding fine and would make it easy to harvest. They also climb nicely along a fence as a nice border.

By season's end the actual hops will start to get brittle which is time to harvest. You can use them to wet hop at that point, or dry or freeze them. Then use them in your beer.

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Old 10-10-2011, 01:07 PM   #3
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The rhizomes are $5 or so. You want rhizomes, not seeds! They are available in the spring from many suppliers. Some of us here on the forum even give them away when we work on our own plants, so you may even get them for just the cost of shipping!

Once you plant them, they grow like weeds. The can be quite invasive, and they are super easy to grow.

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Old 10-10-2011, 01:24 PM   #4
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Very easy to grow. Plant the rhizo early in the spring and give them regular watering (every 4-7 days unless it rains a lot).

You will need to plan for how large they get. They can easily grow 20-25 feet tall in years 2 or 3. And they need a rope or piece of twine to grow around as they don't have the strength to grow on their own. Some people have built beatiful trellis systems. I went cheaper and easier by putting a threaded eye bolt about 20 feet up a sparsely leaved Oak tree. Three such ropes go through the eye bolt and allow me to keep 3 different varieties. To harvest, I just drop the rope from the ground, it's super easy. I got hop bines that were 12-15 feet tall in their first year, hoping for more next year.

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Old 10-10-2011, 01:56 PM   #5
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so what about just planting them under a tree. Will they grow up the trunk of said tree?

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Old 10-10-2011, 02:14 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BilltownBandit View Post
so what about just planting them under a tree. Will they grow up the trunk of said tree?
Yes they will (I have a picture in the gallery). It's not a good idea if you're going to grow them for a harvest because they'll have to compete with the trees' root system for nourishment and most likely they'll be less vigorous due to the shaded conditions.
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Old 10-11-2011, 05:36 PM   #7
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Search Ebay under hop plants/ brewing supplies - go from there.

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Old 10-11-2011, 07:17 PM   #8
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The Homebrewers Garden is a good book for beginning hop growers, I found it to be helpful.

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Old 10-11-2011, 11:39 PM   #9
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Here are three blog entries I did this year, about my hop growing efforts:

http://www.singingboysbrewing.com/Th...nting-the-hops

http://www.singingboysbrewing.com/Th...st-hop-harvest

http://www.singingboysbrewing.com/Th...p-harvest-2011

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Old 10-12-2011, 01:21 AM   #10
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How about animals? I can't grow any type of fruit or veg around my house. My back garden can be like an animal sanctuary at times. I wouldn't imagine they would eat hops, but I thought they wouldn't eat hot peppers and they did.

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