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Old 02-19-2008, 08:41 PM   #1
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Default What eats hop bines?

I'm considering trying to grow my own hops this year.

I'm aware of which insects are a threat to hop bines, but what animals? I read somewhere that squirrels will eat the cones? Where I live squirrels are everywhere, so if this is true, I might have to reconsider.

Thanks!


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Old 02-19-2008, 10:07 PM   #2
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I haven't seen anything on four legs eat hops and I'm between farms and forest. I've got voles, mice, wood rats, squirrels, gophers, moles, coyotes, deer, elk and slugs, lots of slugs. Even the slugs don't seem to like them.


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Old 02-19-2008, 10:39 PM   #3
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Only thing I'd be worried about is rabbits gnawing on the fresh growth early in the spring. The rabbits around here can be quite insatiable. Not sure if they do or not though.
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Old 02-19-2008, 11:32 PM   #4
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I'm about an hour or so south of you in central Mass, and I've never had a problem with critters and hops. Critters and veggie garden is a different story entirely and annually gets me pissed off we have a five-day waiting period to buy a gun.
Anyway, what I do have trouble with is downey midlew on both my cascade and fuggles, not sure if that's a regional thing or may be from some o fthe surrounding plants or what.
Good luck
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Old 02-20-2008, 12:12 AM   #5
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Downy mildew was instrumental in pushing hop growing west. This year try picking the leaves off the first three feet of the bines. Fuggle is normally resistant.
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Old 02-20-2008, 12:41 AM   #6
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I have had deer eat my hops once, but only the leaves were eaten. No cones.

You can prevent downy mildew & insect infestation, by spraying a baking soda & water on the leaves.

A more aggressive approach is making a compost/manure tea and spraying the hop leaves before cone growth.

This involves taking 1 shovel-full of manure/compost and stewing it for a few days in a 5 gal pail of water. Then dump off the brown tea to a sprayer and spray the leaves.

This is from, "The Homebrewers Garden" I don't know the authors off hand. Most LHBS have this book.

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Old 02-20-2008, 02:56 PM   #7
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I had a pretty bad outbreak of Japanese beetles last year. First they did a real number on my cherry tree and then moved onto my hop plants. I treated last fall with beneficail nematodes and as soon as the ground thaws, I've got some milky spore to put out.
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Old 04-23-2013, 02:02 PM   #8
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Veegans eat hops! Neem oil work really well on insects and disease.
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Old 04-23-2013, 03:54 PM   #9
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Rabbits will attack the early growth and I have had (presumably) birds nip the buds off the tips of bines as they grow horizontally along a rope. These animals don't really seem to EAT the hops, more like bite and spit them out. Still, it's irritating because that segment of bine stops growing and has to restart from the last set of leaves. I have heard from others, on the outskirts of Green Bay, that the deer will go after the early growth.
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Old 04-24-2013, 01:47 AM   #10
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Best remedy for rabbits...smack'em!


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