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Old 06-03-2009, 06:31 PM   #1
ChrisS68
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Default Sidearm tips limp - dying?

I said in this thread http://www.homebrewtalk.com/f92/extr...f-curl-120684/ that the leaves on my 2nd year plants were curling under quite severely. I had hoped to see improvement but it only seems to be getting worse. Tips of the leaves are also turning black and dying, and the more afflicted plants have pretty much ceased any vertical growth. Now today, I see that a good number of the sidearms on my Hallertauer have tips that are limp and looking quite lifeless. Up until this point, the Hallertauer was my healthiest plant.

I wonder if it couldn't be a nutrient deficiency from the rain we've been getting, or just plain overwatering. It just doesn't seem like we've gotten that much rain, though last year I had a similar problem, just not as bad. Well, the Sterlings looked like they might not make it until we got a decent dry spell that let the roots dry out some.

I don't get it, everything else in my yard, particularly stuff that I wish would die, grows like crazy. Any ideas what could be the issue?

Thanks,

Chris

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Old 06-03-2009, 06:57 PM   #2
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I'd suspect overwatering.

Look for and get a Soil Moisture tester. Should be able to find one at a bog box hardware store or at a nursery. By this, I went from a light every other day watering to a deep watering about every 2 weeks. I had the tester for a couple years and never really used it. Once I did start using it, I found my soils were dry to about 4 inches and then saturated below that.

The frequent waterings were keeping the deeper soils saturated. Now that I let the moisture levels drop more between waterings the plants are much happier and show an improved vigor.

FWIW, I have 18" high raised beds with a custom blended soil composition. It's very well draining soil but has enough organic in the blend to hold moisture without pooling or swamping.

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Old 06-03-2009, 08:46 PM   #3
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With the rain we've been getting, I haven't actually watered in a while. Just seems the ground hasn't had a chance to dry out any. A cheapie soil test last year suggested that the soil PH might be a bit on the high side. Seems odd to me, but if so, it could be exacerbating the problem.

Mowed the lawn this afternoon and got a closer look at the hops. I found what is wrong with the Hallertauer. One of the bines developed a kink between the ground and the string, pretty much breaking the bine at that point. That's now 4 bines I've lost (1 on each Hallertauer crown and two on the Crystal). Really glad I decided to run a few extra bines!

As an aside: I don't know if it's due to the beating they took in the storm or what, but pretty much all the crowns are putting up shoots all over the place. The Crystal, which was hit the hardest, is putting up shoots 2 feet or so from the crown! That or the rhizome that didn't take last year suddenly decided to start growing. That could explain why the growth up top has slowed, or is it normal to have to keep trimming bines all season? Either way, it looks like I'll have some tilling/rhizome harvesting to do in the spring!

Chris

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Old 06-03-2009, 09:00 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GilaMinumBeer View Post
... snip ... Look for and get a Soil Moisture tester. Should be able to find one at a bog box hardware store or at a nursery. By this, I went from a light every other day watering to a deep watering about every 2 weeks. I had the tester for a couple years and never really used it. Once I did start using it, I found my soils were dry to about 4 inches and then saturated below that. ... snip ...
Most of my hop plants are in a pasture type area. The pasture gets flood irrigated once a week. Some others are in a flower bed type area and they are watered for 60 minutes with a soaker hose once a week. I do supplemental watering by hand if needed during the 3 or 4 really hot weeks in the summer. Just watch the leaves for wilting and give the plants extra water as needed.

I have read comments from a lot of brewers who water daily - seems like the wrong approach to me.
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Old 06-03-2009, 11:35 PM   #5
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One of the things I've learned this year is frequent watering is a bad idea once the hops get going. Dave Wills (freshops) says every three weeks is best. He drip irrigates at 4L/hr per plant for an entire day. I'm doing 6 hrs per week at the same rate, mainly because I have high-clay 'soil' and my plants probably aren't rooted all that deeply from watering too often in past years. Next year, I'll go to his schedule.

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Old 06-04-2009, 12:52 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ChrisS68 View Post
I said in this thread http://www.homebrewtalk.com/f92/extr...f-curl-120684/ that the leaves on my 2nd year plants were curling under quite severely. I had hoped to see improvement but it only seems to be getting worse. Tips of the leaves are also turning black and dying, and the more afflicted plants have pretty much ceased any vertical growth. Now today, I see that a good number of the sidearms on my Hallertauer have tips that are limp and looking quite lifeless. Up until this point, the Hallertauer was my healthiest plant.

I wonder if it couldn't be a nutrient deficiency from the rain we've been getting, or just plain overwatering. It just doesn't seem like we've gotten that much rain, though last year I had a similar problem, just not as bad. Well, the Sterlings looked like they might not make it until we got a decent dry spell that let the roots dry out some.

I don't get it, everything else in my yard, particularly stuff that I wish would die, grows like crazy. Any ideas what could be the issue?

Thanks,

Chris
I had the same thing (extreme leaf curl) on one of my Centennial plants, I could not find an answer for it, so (gasp) I just took the shovel and dug it out of the ground and threw it away, my thinking was it was some kind of viral thing, and I didn't want it to affect the other 11 plants, if someone can give you the proper answer to the problem please let me know, thanks.
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Old 06-04-2009, 04:09 AM   #7
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them big shoots that pop up 2-3 feet from the crown are keepers.

they will out grow anything the main crown has put out in no time at all.

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Old 06-04-2009, 08:32 PM   #8
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I think I might've figured out my leaf curling issue, or at least something that certainly isn't good for the plant. Looks like I might have a bit of an aphid issue. From what I've read they can cause leaves to curl up much like mine are. I swear I didn't see any pests a week or so ago. Maybe I was too busy looking for spider mites. Gave the plants a spray from underneath and all kinds of little green bugs were flying around. Not sure what those are.

I've got spiders and the occasional lady bug, but apparently they're not keeping up. Guess I need to get to the garden center. Thinking either insecticidal soap or neem oil.

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Old 06-04-2009, 08:56 PM   #9
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I..........either insecticidal soap or neem oil.
or a tub of ladybugs seems to work well for me
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