Who Here Cuts Off The First Vines Of The Year

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Do you cut back the first set of vines each year?

  • Yes I cut back

  • No, I let them do their thing

  • I've never heard about doing this

  • OMG I'm on fire! Someone help me!!!!!


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imaguitargod

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I've been reading that some people say to cut off the first sets of new vines for each year. They say this will help to create a stronger second vine setting and help develope more root growth.

So my question is who here does this and have they seen a noticeable differance?
 

Doog_Si_Reeb

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I am planning to do both. I cut the first shoots off of my second year hops, but I'm going to let my first year ones grow with no trimming.
 

GilaMinumBeer

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First year hops should not be cut.

The practice of cutting the early shoots is more of a commercial practice as I understand it. As the commercial yards are too large for multiple harvests and the latter shoots will bloom at a more relatively consistent time.

By not cutting you allow the more vigourous bines to establish. These usually produce a larger harvest. In the home garden it is possible to get 2 harvests. One from teh early bines and another from later shoots allowed to grow to fruition.

For the home garden, the only real necessity for cutting early growth would be due to too early an appearance and not needing to attempt to protect this early growth from late frost or winter storms.
 

gunnyg

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I have stated on forums b4 that I had found several forum posts/responses indicating some hop growers had indicated that they do NOT go along with cutting back sprouts at all, neither first year nor otherwise.

Much of the advice of "experts" on the internet amounts to nothing more than monkey-see--monkey-do--not just on hop growing, but all aspects of homebrewing, etc. There, I have stepped away from the herd and its strict rules--fire away.

In any case, for myself, I will allow numerous bines to grow and reach only a manageable height--maybe 10-12', or less.

In my humble opinion, professional growers allow only, say, 3 bines to grow to 25 +' by reason that as businessmen they seek to plant the max number of plants in a given area, and they also have the professional equipment to harvest that way.

Myself, as a small time homebrewer, I can grow hop plants with multiple bines, and much shorter, and still have far more hops than I need--who cares if that meets someone else's standards for good/poor yield or not.

As I say, I have not saved the forum posts that I found regarding some individuals doing this, but I have satisfied my own curiosity on this point.

God help the individual who thinks for himself, and reports his/her findings on a forum in contrast to the self-proclaimed "experts" who dominate these boards everywhere on every subject on the 'Net. If you do, stand by for a ram.
 

Reverend JC

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From my root ball I always cut back the first handfull of shoots. With that being said, this year there was probably 40 shoots, so I cut the tallest ones and will let the smaller ones grow and produce. this is what works for me.
 

gunnyg

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If I had 40 sprouts I might cut back the lesser ones too.
;)

My Chinook and Nuggett from last year have only about 15 sprouts each, so far.
Unexpectedly, my two last year's plant sprouts are growing much slower than my new rhizomes this year.

I did find one large root/rhizome? extending out at least 6' from the main plant--dunno if that would eventually produce sprouts this year or not--went ahead and trimmed it back to within 18'' of the crown anyway.
 

GilaMinumBeer

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It would have produced sprouts. Root trimmings are how you got your rhisomes.

My 3rd year Golding began making itself a secondary crown nearly a foot away from the main crown.

Next year will definitely be time for me to start root pruning.
 

gunnyg

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It would have produced sprouts. Root trimmings are how you got your rhisomes.

My 3rd year Golding began making itself a secondary crown nearly a foot away from the main crown.

Next year will definitely be time for me to start root pruning.
***********
Thank you--when I removed that root/rhizome it showed no signs of sprouts at all, I did, however, cut it up into several 8-10" sections and dropped them into a pot of Jungle Growth mixed w/Perlite--dunno if anything would come of that.

I have searched the Net in vain to find a good photo/sketch of a hop plant showing the above-ground bines and also the crown of rhizomes with the "roots" underneath.

I have a hard time accepting that the roots consist only of those few dinky 'lil fiberous roots clinging to what would normally look like roots(but actually being rhizomes--underground stems).
Most info online only describes the plant and its parts w/o providing a sketch.
 

TwoHeadsBrewing

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I cut them back, but not all of them. I've read that you let several grow initially, and choose the largest 3 or 4 bines to keep. Cut off all the rest.
 
OP
imaguitargod

imaguitargod

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Oh, this seems like a good place to post this:

Here are some new vines for my 4 year old rhizome (received from a brewery)


Here’s a vine off my other hop plant (2 or 3 year old rhizome received from a brewery). It’s some Cascade hybrid that only grows in the shade (if anyone knows what that might be, would love to know):
 

GilaMinumBeer

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I have a hard time accepting that the roots consist only of those few dinky 'lil fiberous roots clinging to what would normally look like roots(but actually being rhizomes--underground stems).
Most info online only describes the plant and its parts w/o providing a sketch.
I will try to upload a photo I took of a 1 year old crown and root system after I had very carefully coerced it from the ground. It used to be here but I have had to re-organize the content of my hosting account. For now, all I can do is describe it.

Imagine, if you will, the face sucker critter from Aliens. Now, imagine that the tentacles of the face sucker are but a mere couple inches below the soil surface and reach in every direction.

This one year old plant produced nearly 2 dozen "fingers" in every direction (starburst pattern) and had, in one year, reached 4 foot from west tip to east tip, north tip to south tip. Some fingerlings reached straight down but that growth was mostly a feathery mesh of rootlets.

The thing about this plant is that "sprouts" form and grow in every direction. Those that find daylight become the vines we lovingly tend to. Those that do not become additions to the starburst mess of oversized spaghetti we refer to as the root system of rhisomes. the actual crown itself consists of a single largish node or knuckle entwined in a ball of root growth.

I know, pictures are worth a thousand words and prior to having pulled this crown I too was unable to entirely picture what the plant was becoming. Maybe I still have that photo. If I do, I will post it again.
 
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Much of the advice of "experts" on the internet amounts to nothing more than monkey-see--monkey-do--not just on hop growing, but all aspects of homebrewing, etc.
I just want to state that we all come from different backgrounds and most of us are not scientists. Some of us are engineers, coders, managers, artists, students or between careers.

We also come here for different reasons. Some of us work with hard data and that is why we have a Brewing Science forum. Others of us believe in the ritual of brewing and eshew the hydrometer and rely on the sacred mash paddle. A good chunk of us fall in between.

The very nature of small batch hobby brewing does not lend it self well to reproducable results in any case. One instance does not constitute a fact.

We encourage discussion here, sometimes all we have are anecdotes and experience from other disciplines. All of us see the value in participation and the excercise of our opinions.

Thanks for the reminder, though. We can all try to preface are remarks with IMO or otherwise self-identify practical experience from opinion.
 

Laughing_Gnome_Invisible

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I will try to upload a photo I took of a 1 year old crown and root system after I had very carefully coerced it from the ground. It used to be here but I have had to re-organize the content of my hosting account. For now, all I can do is describe it.

Imagine, if you will, the face sucker critter from Aliens. Now, imagine that the tentacles of the face sucker are but a mere couple inches below the soil surface and reach in every direction.

This one year old plant produced nearly 2 dozen "fingers" in every direction (starburst pattern) and had, in one year, reached 4 foot from west tip to east tip, north tip to south tip. Some fingerlings reached straight down but that growth was mostly a feathery mesh of rootlets.

The thing about this plant is that "sprouts" form and grow in every direction. Those that find daylight become the vines we lovingly tend to. Those that do not become additions to the starburst mess of oversized spaghetti we refer to as the root system of rhisomes. the actual crown itself consists of a single largish node or knuckle entwined in a ball of root growth.

I know, pictures are worth a thousand words and prior to having pulled this crown I too was unable to entirely picture what the plant was becoming. Maybe I still have that photo. If I do, I will post it again.
I won't sleep well tonight. :(

Bloody aliens.
 

desertbronze

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I have tried this - I have two Nugget plants side by side - taken from a crown that I split and transplanted to two different areas. Trimmed one and left the other last year - no noticeable difference in yield.

A commercial grower told me that they trim in order to time the harvest. They trim different fields at different times - this allows them to process large amounts of hops as they mature, rather than having all the fields ready for harvest at the same time.
 

GilaMinumBeer

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Photo is gone. My apologies as it was truly a sight. Some here have in fact seen it and can attest to the Alien nature of it's structure.
 

Mike M

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Photo is gone. My apologies as it was truly a sight. Some here have in fact seen it and can attest to the Alien nature of it's structure.
Was in on the hood of a white car or some such thing? If so, I remember it. My first thought was that is was very juvenile Alien-like .. or like a juvenile Alien .. whatever the face sucker thing was.
 

buzzkill

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I grow mine on vertical lines in the garden,and let them just grow. I can pick a big bowl full of the ripe cones. The next day I will pick more and find flowers all over it. I can pick every other day for a month. Comecial growers cant do this,so they cut back all the other growth. I am a gardener, so I get way more bang for the buck. small scale.



on edit.I run them on HORIZONTAL lines..not vertical. from 6 ft. poles.perfect for picking.
 
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