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Old 03-26-2010, 03:06 PM   #1
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Default Prohibition era bootleg hops!

So I was discussing growing hops with my brother, and he tells me that he found hops growing untended on his father-in-laws farmette. After some discussion it turns out that in the 20's and 30's the parcel was used as a produce farm for fruit, berries, asparagus, and other stuff..... and apparently also hops!! (probably a little bootleg beer also, given the rural nature of the area)

We are going to monitor them this year and attempt to harvest cones and rhizomes, but how the heck does one go about finding out which type of hop it is?

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Old 03-26-2010, 03:17 PM   #2
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Default Historical

Cluster or Canadian Red Vine were historically used in you area. Or they are british transplants
Take a Look at HopUnion's pictures and compare when you have the hops

Also looking through the hop varieties you can exclude a good portion of the varieties because they have been introduced since 70's

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Old 03-26-2010, 03:18 PM   #3
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You can't. Well, you can if you want to spend the $$'s on a DNA test, but its probably not feasible.

What you most likely have is a feral descendant of a Cluster variety that was prevalent in WI from 1847 well through prohibition.

If you want more, here are some articles:

Are There Really Wild Hops?

Part 2

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Old 03-26-2010, 06:22 PM   #4
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Fuggles was grown just about everywhere, it's one of the oldest cultivated hops. So, that's another possibility. Most of the feral hops around here are Fuggles.
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