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Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > Hops Growing > Very early flowering ?
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Old 07-03-2012, 01:30 AM   #1
Hounds
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Default Very early flowering ?

Hey folks,
I'm brand new to the forum and new to growing hops, not new to brewing however.

Little background info that may or may not be usefull?
I live in upstate/Central New york and we normally get tons of snow with fairly mild temp's. (20-40F). Past Two winters we have had almost NO snow and extremely mild temperatures.
I usually water them with plain water daily just after the sun drops or early morning before it gets up. I also water with plant food maybe 2X weekly.
Plants are in well drained sandy/loam soil with good fertility according to the meter with a ph of 6.5 in there.

I planted Two varieties: Fuggles and Cascade.

1st season some very small flowers/buds formed and the bines took off fairly well and vigorous.

2nd season (current) bines took right off like crazy and grew like crazy until about Mid June at which time they slowed way down.
All else seemed fine.

Currently (July 2nd) they have started to flower.

I heard somewhere this is caused by nutrient deficiency of some sort? Or is this possibly caused because they are so young and not fully developed? Root system.

OR would a mild Winters cause this? They also started really taking off out of the ground very early than I expected like May 1st.

Thanks.

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Old 07-03-2012, 05:41 AM   #2
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Last year about this time my 1st year plants were just transitioning from flowers to cones. This year the same plants are anywhere from "about the same" to "way the heck ahead of last year". I attribute this to the extraordinarily warm winter and spring, because the plants sure don't look stressed.

You're not very far away, so I'd say your plants should be well on the way to flowering up by now.

Cheers!

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Old 07-03-2012, 11:30 AM   #3
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Originally Posted by day_trippr View Post
Last year about this time my 1st year plants were just transitioning from flowers to cones. This year the same plants are anywhere from "about the same" to "way the heck ahead of last year". I attribute this to the extraordinarily warm winter and spring, because the plants sure don't look stressed.

You're not very far away, so I'd say your plants should be well on the way to flowering up by now.

Cheers!
+1 I planted my rhizomes in June last year (first year plants and they exploded in July and August. I don't think I got flowers until Aug last year. So you are doing fine. With this heat, just make sure to check the soil for moisture. I have been watering everyday. Not too heavy but enough to wet the leaves and keep the soil not dry. Here is a pick of some cones i already picked this year. This is 3 months ahead of schedule. I think I will get 3 harvests. Below is Cascade and Centennial. Cascade is 2 inches and Centennial is 1.

http://www.homebrewtalk.com/photo/20...nes-55493.html
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Old 07-03-2012, 12:42 PM   #4
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Hmm, thanks guys seems your also in the North East. So, maybe there IS something to this mild Winter with no snow and very mild Spring.
I have no actual cones forming yet just the early burr's. Hoping for somewhat of an actual yield this year. I also wonder if this early budding may also be from them only being in the 2nd season. ?

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Old 07-03-2012, 01:35 PM   #5
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We also had a warm winter here in the Southeast (Tennessee). My Cascades already have decent size cones, here's hoping for three harvests as well!

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Old 07-03-2012, 01:51 PM   #6
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OHHHH bye the way Hounds. Once I got the burrs, I started to give the plants some miracle gro bloom booster. I think it is 10 52 10. A special plant food developed with high phosphorus for maximum color and bloom yield. I did 1 TBL with 1 gallon of water for 2 or 3 plants once every 3 weeks

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Old 07-04-2012, 05:56 AM   #7
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My plants are mostly third year, and are spread across the spectrum. My Goldings have cones ready for harvest, my Chinooks have a profusion of mediums sized cones still growing, while my Glacier and others (Mt Hood, Perle, Nugget, Norther Brewer) are still flowering. Crazy to be harvesting in July, but we had a very warm Spring, which seemed to have more impact on the Brit than the Yanks.

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Old 07-04-2012, 07:04 AM   #8
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Hounds,

You're probably seeing two factors at work here. The first year, that rhizome's main focus on staying alive is to establish roots. Once it has some roots going it'll spend a little time/energy producing shoots. If all is going well, it may even throw out some cones. Come year two, guess what - the roots are already in place so all that energy spent into developing a root system last year can be put to work sending up shoots. No delays this year, they come right up as soon as the ground warms up enough to get 'em going. The hop growers are dealing with thousands of plants that span large acreage and some of those plants tend to jump the gun while others lag behind, so for them to ensure a more uniform harvest (and some other reasons) they whack off the early growth knowing that the next flush of growth will come up and grow at a more uniform rate. Early training of the first growth will give you an earlier harvest. Maybe good in some cases, maybe not so good in others.

The warmer than normal Winter created other conditions which may have encouraged early cones. The below ground parts of plants will continue to grow until the soil freezes. This includes both roots and rhizomes. The longer it takes the soil to freeze the more underground growth will occur going into the Winter. The same type of thing will occur as the soil begins to warm going into the Spring. Earlier than normal soil warmth will tend to bring the plants out of dormancy sooner than when the gun typically goes off which will also push harvest time up.

I've never heard of the nutrient imbalance causing an early harvest but then again, I'm not a hop farmer - just a guy that likes watching hops grow. Pick 'em when their ripe!!

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Old 07-04-2012, 09:28 AM   #9
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Dude it's like any other plant, we just passed the summer solstice, days are getting shorter, plants think "flower!"

If they flower now it will be 10 weeks until fully developed buds, that's mid september, and perfectly normal for the climate here in upstate ny

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Old 07-04-2012, 09:33 AM   #10
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Also, if you care about your plants and your beer you won't use freakin miracle gro. Remember you're eventually gonna drink this stuff, you are what you eat applies to plants too. Spend a few bucks at the plant store for some good organic fertilizer.

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