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Old 09-09-2014, 12:46 AM   #1
noreaster40s
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Default Hops Didn't Do Well This Year

This is my 4th year of growing hops. I plant Cascade, Centennial and Williamette here in New England. In years past the Centennial have been the most robust followed by the Cascade with the Williamette the less of the three. This year both the Centennial and the Cascade did very poorly. They didn't grow nearly as robust as in years past, had much less yield, much smaller cones and started to lose color fading towards yellowish with the cones turning to a very light green or almost white. That is the ones that didn't start to turn brown. Granted, it has been a cooler year this year around here with more rain so I'm wondering if that might've contributed to it all. Then again I've never fertilized them at all either but it was a pretty drastic change from years past. Anyone shed any light on this for me? Thanks.

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Old 09-09-2014, 01:07 AM   #2
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From what was written, by the time I got to "Granted" I had already decided your plants were starving this year.

I have to believe hops use a prodigious amount of nutrients to generate as much mass in as short a period as I've experienced. I add a large quantity of rotted horse manure in the Spring as soon as the ground can be worked without making a mess of it, mostly as a heavy side dressing around each bed but also forked in a bit as well.

Then I'll do two to three pellet feeds during the early half of the season (once the plants have started coning that's the end of the feeding regimen). Once frost has killed the standing bines I'll mulch the beds with 4-6 inches of mown leaves which brings the worms like crazy. Then start over again the next Spring.

So I'd say feed your hops...

Cheers!

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Old 09-09-2014, 01:25 AM   #3
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Thanks for the feedback. I'll give it a try.

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Old 09-09-2014, 03:02 AM   #4
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Any chance you grow them in containers rather than in the Earth?

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Old 09-09-2014, 11:25 PM   #5
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B-Hoppy, No, I don't grow them in a container. I have the 3 varieties spaced around my yard. It'd be interesting if they'd even grow in containers since they have such a big root system.

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Old 09-09-2014, 11:32 PM   #6
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We also had a drier than average summer, which is good and bad. My plants suffered a bit as well but regular watering, fertilizing, and heavy mulch seemed to help.

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