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Old 09-24-2012, 06:28 PM   #11
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Wisconsin is basically a perfect climate for hops, I'm a terrible gardener and I got four different varieties to grow great this year in Stevens Point.

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Old 09-26-2012, 02:09 PM   #12
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If you want some rhizomes in the spring, head 2.5 hours north and bring some buckets and a shovel.
Yooper, I would love to take you up on this if the offer extends beyond the OP. I'm also from Green Bay and make frequent trips up to Daggett, MI to visit the girlfriend's folks. I would love to get my hands on some Hallertau and Chinook! (Willing to trade centennial, cascade, goldings, or homebrew for them too!)

Nate, like everyone keeps saying, it is really quite easy. I have 2 second year plants that grew voraciously in my parent's backyard. Southern exposure and water make keep them happy. Of course, the potting soil I mixed with the clay-heavy earth probably helped the roots establish themselves. I harvested 9 rhizomes from these two plants this year, potted them and trellaced them on the patio of my apartment. These guys face west and are still thriving in 8" pots, next year in the ground, I'm positive they will bear cones. I have 21 plants now and will build a small little yard for them (somewhere) next spring. I would be lying if I said that I wasn't entertaining some idea of bringing hop farming back to Wisconsin
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Old 09-26-2012, 02:15 PM   #13
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Yooper, I would love to take you up on this if the offer extends beyond the OP. I'm also from Green Bay and make frequent trips up to Daggett, MI to visit the girlfriend's folks. I would love to get my hands on some Hallertau and Chinook! (Willing to trade centennial, cascade, goldings, or homebrew for them too!)

Nate, like everyone keeps saying, it is really quite easy. I have 2 second year plants that grew voraciously in my parent's backyard. Southern exposure and water make keep them happy. Of course, the potting soil I mixed with the clay-heavy earth probably helped the roots establish themselves. I harvested 9 rhizomes from these two plants this year, potted them and trellaced them on the patio of my apartment. These guys face west and are still thriving in 8" pots, next year in the ground, I'm positive they will bear cones. I have 21 plants now and will build a small little yard for them (somewhere) next spring. I would be lying if I said that I wasn't entertaining some idea of bringing hop farming back to Wisconsin
Oh, sure, anytime. Well, "anytime" in the spring that is! I'm a long way from Daggett, like 90 miles! But if you're up for a little roadtrip, you're always welcome.

I have centennial, goldings, and cascade already so no need to trade.
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Old 09-26-2012, 07:03 PM   #14
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Nate, like everyone keeps saying, it is really quite easy. I have 2 second year plants that grew voraciously in my parent's backyard. Southern exposure and water make keep them happy. Of course, the potting soil I mixed with the clay-heavy earth probably helped the roots establish themselves. I harvested 9 rhizomes from these two plants this year, potted them and trellaced them on the patio of my apartment. These guys face west and are still thriving in 8" pots, next year in the ground, I'm positive they will bear cones. I have 21 plants now and will build a small little yard for them (somewhere) next spring. I would be lying if I said that I wasn't entertaining some idea of bringing hop farming back to Wisconsin
That's good to know. We have alot of sun in our backyard, especially to the south & west. It may be fun to try out, if it works, great...if not, nothing much lost. Thanks for all of the information!
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Old 09-28-2012, 03:31 AM   #15
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I must have a real brown thumb!

I live in Wisconsin Rapids and I've got three hops going and have yet to have a harvest of enough to brew more than one batch of beer.

I've got nugget, Mt. Hood, and a mystery bine that was here from the previous owner. The Nugget and Mt. Hood have been in for two years. The mystery bine is at least 5 years old. I got nothing from the Mt. Hood and the mystery bine. I got about one dehydrator tray worth of Nugget this year.

I watered them faithfully through the drought. I mulched 'em. And I even added a little chicken poop to the Mt. Hood and Nugget. The grass on the edges of the mulch looked fantastic but the hops, not so much.

Lots of sun and plenty of vertical room.

The Jap beetles hit the Mt. Hood pretty hard.

But other than that I don't know whats up.

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Old 10-01-2012, 03:57 AM   #16
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Hey BlackJaque - I am not from The Rapids, but I have spent a lot of time in Nekoosa, and The WI Rapids area (recreation), and one guess might be super sandy soil. I know that is a very sandy part of the state in the WI River basin, and if you think that might be a potential problem, I might check the soil content (clay, silt, loam, sand %) and the pH of your soil. I also heard chicken poop can be slightly alkaline (above pH 7), hops generally like slightly acidic pH (below 7). Also sandy soil can sometimes be slightly over pH 7 so maybe you had a combination that the plants didn't like too much. From most of what I read, hear and experience hops are basically weeds that grow crazy anywhere, so if you are having issues I would start at the soil. The good news is that hops like a fast draining soil, so if you get the nutrients and pH right they should thrive. Secondly, this was a brutally hot and unusually dry summer here in WI, so perhaps your second year aspirations went out with the weather. I am discounting that for certain species since I had cascades and nugget that fared well in the heat, centennial took a hit from the heat and did nothing (but are also first years). As far as the Mt. Hood the beetles cause severe stress, perhaps that is the answer to the lack of production in those as well. Just throwing out some possible starting points. Good luck in getting to the bottom of the issues. Cheers, UWbucky

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Old 10-01-2012, 02:38 PM   #17
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this was a brutally hot and unusually dry summer here in WI
No kidding. I watered regularly, and some plants seemed to do well. However, the area I am gardening is in between two garages, and the wind funnels through there. I also got a hefty $170 water bill at the end of the summer - thankfully we have a separate meter for outdoor faucets. Having that fear of the water bill I'm sure kept me from watering as much as I should have.

If all goes well with my experiment in going down to one vehicle for the family - I should have enough money saved to get a separate well for the garden next year.
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Old 11-02-2012, 07:43 AM   #18
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Sorry about the thread necromancy.

I live in De Pere as well and established three hop hills 5? years ago. The Cascades are unstoppable and produce like maniacs, as others have said. They got me several ounces dried the first year despite going in as rhizomes.

The other two in my yard are Liberty and Willamette. They are more unpredictable based on weather (moisture and springtime temps); in some years they've grown taller than the Cascades but yielded many fewer cones. This year I got a lawn service (too damn many weeds) and the overspray caught the Liberties and Willamettes mid-May. After trimming all the damaged bines there wasn't anything left, but they came back pretty well...no cones, but they survived.

One brewpartner (who lives near Preble HS) struggles to keep up with them due to work and travel, but can get good yield off his Sterlings and Nuggets. I take a lot better care of my Cascades, and his Nuggets still almost out-produce them.

My father (lives in Ashwaubenon) grows a Tettnang on his back fence and it would yield ok if the neighbor lady didn't keep clipping off anything that sticks onto her side of the fence. (We don't share homebrew with her.)

For a trellis, I tried some chain link fence poles but they were too flimsy. I ended up digging holes 2-3 feet down, got some 14' or 16' 2x4's, sistered them up to make a 4x4, and anchored them with a half-bag of quickrete each. I put one more 16-footer across the top, so it looks like a giant E coming out of the ground. I added a little bracing while the concrete set up and never really took it down - but it would stand free at this point. I didn't use treated wood (don't want the arsenic and crap leaching into the soil where my hops are growing) so I will probably have to change the boards out in a few more years. (Lesson to be learned there is use the forming tubes - I have to change my mailbox out every other year or so, and it's easier to get the smooth round cylinder out of the ground).

This picture was taken May 24, 2010. From left to right, Willamette, Liberty, and Cascade. The Liberty is by far the tallest (>6' already), but my records don't say what I got off of it. I think I got close to a dry lb off the Cascades...this year I got almost 2 lbs.

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Old 12-22-2013, 11:46 AM   #19
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Interested in Growing Hops?
Just in your backyard or commercially?
The Hop Garden is offering two workshops on growing Hops. We are a new Hop Yard located outside of Belleville, Wisconsin. We are located about 20 minutes south of the Beltline from Madison. Where best to learn about hops than an actual 10 acre hop yard! Workshops will be led by Rich Joseph, Co-Owner of Joseph Staudt Hop’s and The Hop Garden. Joseph Staudt Hop’s is a two acre Hop Yard located in Neosho, Wisconsin. Joseph Staudt Hop’s have been featured at many of Wisconsin’s finest Breweries and Brew Pubs, including: The Grumpy Troll, The Great Dane, Title Town Brewery, One Barrel Brewing, Rustic Brewing and Stone Cellar Brew Pub. Rich has been growing hops for 4 years commercially. He is the Vice President of Wisconsin Hop Exchange and has been working with Brewers all over the Midwest.
Backyard Hop Growing is designed for the home brewer or the folks that just like to learn more about hops and how they are used in beer making. Topics covered will include where and how to plant hops, how to care for them, backyard trellis structures, fertilizing and watering, harvesting and drying, as well as packaging for future use. Cost is $45 per person or sign up as a group of two or more and the price drops to $35 per person. Workshops start at 9:30am and will finish at Noon. The workshop will be offered on the following Saturday mornings: January 11th, 25th and February 8th.
The Commercial Hop Growing Workshop is designed for the person that is thinking about growing a larger amount of hops from ¼ acre which is about 250 plants to 10 acres or more. Topics will include, Hop plant structure and life, what Brewers are looking for in their hops, economics, labor requirements, hop yard planning and design, purchasing rootstock and plants, scouting for weeds and insects, harvesting options, dryer or oast design, resources available, packaging and marketing or working with Wisconsin Hop Exchange Cooperative. Cost is $125 per person or $95 per person if signing up in a group of two or more. The Workshop will start at 9am and will finish at Noon, lunch and refreshments will be provided and discussions will last until all questions are answered or 3pm. This workshop will be offered on the following Saturday Mornings: February 1st, 15th and 22nd.
How To Reserve Your Seat:
The workshops will be conducted at the office of The Hop Garden. Tours will be given of the yard and facilities, weather permitting. Seating is limited per workshop. To reserve your seat please mail a check payable to: The Hop Garden, N8668 County Road D, Belleville, Wisconsin 53508. Please include the number of seats being reserved, the date of the meeting you are going to attend, along with an email address or home address. Once the check is received you will be sent an invoice by mail or email to confirm your reservation.
Make a day or a weekend of it and visit local breweries. We are 8 miles from New Glarus Brewing, 10 miles from Wisconsin Brewing Company in Verona, 12 miles from The Great Dane in Fitchburg, 17 miles to the Grumpy Troll in Mt. Horeb and 25 miles to Minhas Brewing in Monroe. There are excellent Hotels in all of these cities.
For more information and to learn more about our Hop Yards, please contact:
Rich Joseph: 608-516-9649, rich.joseph.rj@gmail.com or visit our website: TheHopGarden.net visit us on Facebook - Joseph Staudt Hop’s or The Hop Garden

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