Hops in Minnesota - if you could only grow 2 - Home Brew Forums

Register Now!
Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > Hops Growing > Hops in Minnesota - if you could only grow 2

Thread Tools
Old 03-23-2012, 03:42 PM   #1
Jan 2012
Posts: 24
Liked 2 Times on 2 Posts

Hey everyone, I've been lurking on HBT for a while now. The info is great.

Anyway I'm thinking about planting a couple varieties of hops this year and was wondering how people would answer this question:

If you could only grow two varieties, what would they be?

I'm leaning towards cascade and centennial but not completely sold on centennial.

Also any suggestions for varieties that do well in Minnesota?

Reply With Quote
Old 03-23-2012, 04:06 PM   #2
DangerRoss's Avatar
Jun 2011
Minnetonka, Minnesota
Posts: 344
Liked 25 Times on 17 Posts


My friend I brew with ordered hops this year from Northwest Hops and he is a first time grower. He read a couple books and a whole bunch of threads, and decided on going with Cascade and Centennial like you had mentioned. He was debating between Chinook, Kent Goldings and Centennial but ended up going with centennial because of availability and he can always brew a Two Hearted Ale to use them up.

If I were you I would make a list of beer styles you tend to brew and drink the most and choose the hop variety that can produce as many as those beers as possible.

Reply With Quote
Old 03-23-2012, 04:36 PM   #3
Jul 2011
Ramsey & Akeley, Mn
Posts: 2,975
Liked 237 Times on 217 Posts

Both are great varieties for pale ale's and IPA's. If that's what you primarily brew then go for it. They both do well in MN I believe. Look especially closely at hops you use in late additions and dry hops. Using fresh whole leaf hops here helps a lot (and are more expensive than pellet bittering hops). I still plan on using the store bought pellet hops for beers where bittering is critical (w/ lab AAU%'s).

I put cascade, williamette, and hallertau in the ground last spring. Got some decent production out of the first 2. Hope to get much more this year, especially considering the longer growing season we're about to have. I like to brew a variety of American, English, and German brews. So I found that many of these recipes used late additions or dry hopping of these varieties.

I'm now wishing I had a centennial as well since I really loved the B2H clone that I made this winter. I'll keep that in mind for next year and possibly add one more variety. Give myself some time to see how the current varieties go as well.
Primary #1: Umlaut my Kölsch VII #2: Empty
Secondary #1
: Empty #2: Empty #3: Cab MerMarqeNac Wine
: Mugged a Monk Paters
: Dark Belgian Strong, Black Raspberry Rhubarb wine, RIS, Carmel Apple Cider, Big 50 Barleywine, Framboise Lambic, Barolo Wine, Berry Rhubarb Wine, Black Currant wine
On Deck: BGSA

Reply With Quote
Old 03-23-2012, 05:03 PM   #4
Jan 2012
Posts: 24
Liked 2 Times on 2 Posts

Thanks for the thoughts. One of the reasons I'm looking for insight is that im fairly new, 3 batches under my belt.

Thus far I'm into American styles, first was an American brown, and I'm just cracking into the American amber I recently brewed as my first AG.

My hesitation is that cascades and centennials seem to be very similar and I'd like a little diversity.

Reply With Quote
Old 03-23-2012, 07:51 PM   #5
Aug 2011
, Maryland
Posts: 94
Liked 3 Times on 3 Posts

Two cascades. I love IPAs and they're good for any stage of the brew, plus they're pretty hard to screw up and you get big yields.

Reply With Quote
Old 03-23-2012, 08:26 PM   #6
sweetcell's Avatar
Jan 2012
Rockville, MD
Posts: 5,118
Liked 975 Times on 706 Posts

agreed that centennial are relatively similar to cascade - i'd consider something from the noble hops family/persuasion for some variety. Perle, Spalt Select, Sterling and Santiam fit this bill. check out the spreadsheet in my signature for more info.
What hops should I grow? Looking for cheap honey?
- Drinking: BPA made with ingredients from NHC, 2 blends of a rye sour: ECY20 + ECY34, local sour cherry kriek #2, brett'ed Belgian blond on raspberries
- Aging: Imperial Chocolate Milk Stout (half on coconut), sour blond on second-use cherries, English Barleywine (half on brett), 3726 saison w/ brett x2 (dregs mix & Lochristi), GNO 3724 saison w/ brett mix, sour cherry mead, acerglyn, and a few other sours...

Reply With Quote
Old 03-23-2012, 10:40 PM   #7
Sep 2011
Elk Grove Village, IL
Posts: 165
Liked 8 Times on 6 Posts

It really depends on what you like to brew. If you are just starting out, variety might be nice to push you to try new things. There are generally 3 families of hop flavor: citrus, floral, and spicy. The C hops are citrus, British varieties are more floral and earthy, and German are usually spicy.

Reply With Quote
Old 03-23-2012, 10:43 PM   #8
Ale's What Cures You!
Yooper's Avatar
Jun 2006
UP of Michigan, Winter Texan
Posts: 69,570
Liked 7927 Times on 5551 Posts

In my area, I've had great luck with hallertauer, cascade and chinook growing exceedingly well. Centennial is doing better than ok, willamette is barely surviving. We're in zone 3/4 here.
Broken Leg Brewery
Giving beer a leg to stand on since 2006

Reply With Quote
Old 03-24-2012, 05:15 PM   #9
May 2011
, MN
Posts: 225
Liked 12 Times on 10 Posts

I'm in the northern half of the twin cities. Chinook and cascade have done really well. My centenials first year went well enough. We'll see how it does this year.

Reply With Quote
Old 03-24-2012, 07:50 PM   #10
Feb 2012
Post Falls, Idaho
Posts: 194
Liked 2 Times on 2 Posts

North Idaho here, I went with Cascade and Willamette.

Reply With Quote
Thread Tools

Forum Jump