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Old 11-25-2009, 02:45 AM   #1
NTOLERANCE
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Default Well....I am officially a hop farmer

Took the plunge this week, and agreed to rent land for a hop yard.

Almost 3 acres of land, certified organic.
I work for the land owner parttime repairing equipment for their landscape/nursery company. This keeps me there a bit anyway. I am able to use the company equipment:Skid Loaders, tractors, post hole diggers, tillers and the like. WE also have an organic composting system which will provide me with plenty of nutrients for my hops.

Here is an aerial pic of the land, I put a rectangle around the section I rented.



Hopefully by spring I will have a large number of used telephone poles dropped off for use in a trellis. I have a contact at the local power company.

Have to work out a few things yet.... I dont have water close by, so I will have to use a large water tank to water my hops. I also want to put up a cold frame to start the rhizomes in before planting in the ground.

I have a number of sources lined up for rhizomes, including the nursery where I work. I can buy from them at cost, but selection is limited.

Anyways, I will be posting pics as I go. I also plan on having a "Hop Yard Fall Party" at the end of each season.

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Old 11-25-2009, 03:00 AM   #2
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Holy crap, talk about jumping in with both feet! I'm happy just to get 5 plants going for my second season...

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Old 11-25-2009, 03:28 AM   #3
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Wow... good luck man! That is a cool project!

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Old 11-25-2009, 03:34 AM   #4
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Right on. The newest issue of BYO has an article about small scale hop farming. It takes a bit to get established but apparently they are successful.

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Old 11-25-2009, 03:47 AM   #5
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You can not use the telephone poles if you want to be organic certified.

Creosote treated lumber is out, as is cromated copper arsenate treated (pressure treated) lumber.

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Old 11-25-2009, 04:08 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NTOLERANCE View Post
Took the plunge this week, and agreed to rent land for a hop yard.

Almost 3 acres of land, certified organic.
I work for the land owner parttime repairing equipment for their landscape/nursery company. This keeps me there a bit anyway. I am able to use the company equipment:Skid Loaders, tractors, post hole diggers, tillers and the like. WE also have an organic composting system which will provide me with plenty of nutrients for my hops.

Here is an aerial pic of the land, I put a rectangle around the section I rented.



Hopefully by spring I will have a large number of used telephone poles dropped off for use in a trellis. I have a contact at the local power company.

Have to work out a few things yet.... I dont have water close by, so I will have to use a large water tank to water my hops. I also want to put up a cold frame to start the rhizomes in before planting in the ground.

I have a number of sources lined up for rhizomes, including the nursery where I work. I can buy from them at cost, but selection is limited.

Anyways, I will be posting pics as I go. I also plan on having a "Hop Yard Fall Party" at the end of each season.
I wish you all the luck in the world, bro. keep the faith....
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Old 11-25-2009, 04:31 AM   #7
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Those hops are going to be garbage! Send them all to me for disposal.

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Old 11-25-2009, 11:29 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Orangevango View Post
You can not use the telephone poles if you want to be organic certified.

Creosote treated lumber is out, as is cromated copper arsenate treated (pressure treated) lumber.
The organic grower at work said treated lumber can be used, provided it is burned/charred to a certain amount ( I think it was 1" depth ).

I have a back up plan though. My day job provides me acess to damaged industrial racking. These are steel beams and cross braces 20' and longer. They are also much easier to handle than telephone poles.
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Old 11-25-2009, 05:25 PM   #9
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Call the USDA.

Burning does not denature tar-creosote, and charring the ends would be a hazard to your health in all likelihood.

Im surprised you aren't buying the land. Its going to suck when your landlord decides that he wants his nd back, and you have 30,000 dollars in infrastructure on it that you really dont have any way to move.

I am planting a hop farm in the spring, only 160 plants, but I already own the land, and am using plain pine trees for the posts. For treatment, I am painting the ends with a wax-linseed oil mixture.

I expect them to last about 3-4 years before needing replacement.

On the compost front, where are you getting your compostables? You will find that getting anything by the pickup-truck load is not going to be sufficient. Plan on buying a dump truck load of manure every couple of months.

I hope you have the money to last out the income-less time before the hops start producing.

Best of luck to you.

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Old 11-25-2009, 08:30 PM   #10
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Quote:
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Those hops are going to be garbage! Send them all to me for disposal.
Haha, yes; I concur. I think they should be shipped up here to Canada in the middle of nowhere for disposal.

Nicely done! Keep us posted.
I was happy to have 3 12' bines this year as a first year grower. Got a small ziploc bag full of Cascade my first season! Yee Haw!
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