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Second year with dying hops... help!!

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CeruleanFox

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My wife bought me 2 hop plants 3-4 years ago of an unknown variety. The second year I got cones and the plants looked established. Last year I did absolutely nothing besides let them grow and they turned totally brown and died. Shoots came up like crazy this year and I thinned too about 5 bines per plant. Used insecticide, miticide, and fungicide combo not more than once a week because I started seeing signs of the same browning start on the leaves this year.

Very sad and also frustrated that taking much better care of them this year doesn't seem to be helping! I expect a nutrient deficiency more than anything as I can't find any bugs on them. Only browning on the edges, eventually showing little white dots. The leaves on new shoots are not forming properly either, with severe cupping/curling.

Please help with any suggestions!!
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CeruleanFox

CeruleanFox

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Note that in the 3rd pic you can see the browned areas with white dots the best. This is what spread to the whole plant last year. Leaves are on the ground as I'm wondering if removal will prevent it from spreading. Also forgot to mention new shoots from the main bines are more yellow in color and stay that way even as they get bigger. I'm in wisconsin FYI.
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RePete

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I don’t know. Did you have a frost?

I have some plants really doing well this year. But the ones that did great last year didn’t come up at all. It’s a mystery.
 
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CeruleanFox

CeruleanFox

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I don’t know. Did you have a frost?

I have some plants really doing well this year. But the ones that did great last year didn’t come up at all. It’s a mystery.
Odd. We had some snow when the plants were only a few feet tall but it was only twice. That was many weeks ago so my guess is that would not have impacted all the new growth.
 

mashpaddled

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Looks like a combination of nutrient deficiency and with the curling maybe overwatering at the root level. Are these hops getting watered by an irrigation system for the grass? Hops like a lot of water but like most plants standing water at the roots are a problem. If you amended the soil at the hops but the rest of your soil is clay heavy you can essentially create a giant clay pot that holds too much water around the roots. Check the moisture under the bines throughout the next week. You want the soil to dry out a little between waterings. You might need to shield the ground around the bines from your irrigation system to moderate the flow of water.
 

Deadalus

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I'm not sure how it might affect hops but any sort of weed killer applied in the area? Potential for runoff of that into the hops growing area? I have an upper lawn area I am reseeding and I noticed some of the pretreatment weed killer had run a bit downslope into the lower yard area.
 
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CeruleanFox

CeruleanFox

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Looks like a combination of nutrient deficiency and with the curling maybe overwatering at the root level. Are these hops getting watered by an irrigation system for the grass? Hops like a lot of water but like most plants standing water at the roots are a problem. If you amended the soil at the hops but the rest of your soil is clay heavy you can essentially create a giant clay pot that holds too much water around the roots. Check the moisture under the bines throughout the next week. You want the soil to dry out a little between waterings. You might need to shield the ground around the bines from your irrigation system to moderate the flow of water.
This could very well be the issue on both fronts. Our soil is very very clay heavy and the hops are next to our vegetable garden, which we water with a sprinkler. All of this is behind our garage and the downspouts from our gutters come out near where the hops are. We have a soil moisture tester coming but I'm guessing part of the solution will be protecting the roots from moisture. Any ideas (trying to avoid buying a soaker hose system if possible)?

By the way I also applied some fertilizer and compost on top of the roots in case they are nutrient deficient. All this combined with not treating them with the fungicide/miticide/pesticide in the full sun seems to have helped. I think we do have downey mildew in our yard because I see leaves from nearby trees that seem to show the symptoms when they fall in our yard. The treatment has seemed to stop any sign of it on new growth which is great!

Guessing that the hops are fighting multiple issues but still pushing through overall! Very robust plants!
 
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