Homegrown hops 2020

Discussion in 'Homebrewing' started by riptorn, Mar 19, 2020.

  1. GormBrewhouse

    GormBrewhouse Devotee (493) Jun 24, 2015 Vermont

    I usually have 2 bines per rope and train 4 bines per plant.
    Production will depend on variety, soil fertility and your ability to combat weeds, insects and fungus/mold.

    1 bines per plant will lead to less production of cones. I'd run at least 2 bines per plant, test your soil, fertilize per recommendations per the soil test, learn about insects, and the rest. Walk your hop yard weekly looking for problems.
     
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  2. Peach63

    Peach63 Zealot (548) Jul 17, 2019 New York
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    I use masonry line, strong stuff. I have a hook in my eaves, I put two tent stakes in the ground and run the line in an inverted "V", from the stakes to the hook. I wrap three bines on each side. It works for me.
     
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  3. riptorn

    riptorn Disciple (382) Apr 26, 2018 North Carolina
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    So you end up with 6 bines co-mingling as they approach the apex? I'm guessing each of the 6 are the same varietal, but maybe not from the same rhizome (separate, spaced plantings)?

    For a 4x4 if you can dig a hole about 18” deep and twice the width of the pole you can set the pole, backfill and tamp firmly as you go. I’ve done that with lean-to’s in sandy-ish soil and it worked fine. Keep in mind tho, that was for a structure with vertical load…..not a hops trellis with twine pulling on it. (I've wondered how much a mature bine flush w/hops weighs.)

    Some/most cements have sodium hydroxide, which is caustic (think pH of 12 – 13).
    4x4 pressure treated posts are usually suitable for ground (and cement) contact. In the past, pressure treated 2x4’s were typically not suitable for ground contact, but I’m seeing more and more that are. The label stapled to the end of the board should state if it’s suitable for ground contact (if it doesn't, assume it's not). If they’re not and you put them in the ground, the cement (or moisture if not in cement) will rot them over time. This can be mitigated somewhat by slathering them with roofing tar from the bottom to just above the ground line.

    My above-ground setup is similar in construction to @jmdrpi (but mine ain't as purdy) . Mine has no ‘below-ground’….all poles and bracing are attached to the frame of a raised bed, and to my deck. Pics to follow at some point.
     
  4. jmdrpi

    jmdrpi Poo-Bah (6,956) Dec 11, 2008 Pennsylvania
    Society

    So when I built the hop trelis setup back in 2012, I actually documented the process in a couple of blog posts:
    http://harleysvillehomestead.blogspot.com/2012/05/hop-trellis-build.html
    http://harleysvillehomestead.blogspot.com/2012/06/hop-trellis-build-part-2.html

    The concrete footers are probably way over engineered, but they've been rock solid every since. Every fall I un-bolt and take down the top halves of the second set of poles, and then put them back up when needed in the spring. The 2x4s for these sections have warped a little, but not too bad.
     
  5. GormBrewhouse

    GormBrewhouse Devotee (493) Jun 24, 2015 Vermont

    I got locust growing in the woodlot so I auger a 4 foot hole and wee waa part of a tree 6-8 inch diameter right in.

    definatly not purdy,ie ripper, but very functional and rugged. use 1/4 inch cable between poles and baler twine for the bines. cheap and functional.
     
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  6. riptorn

    riptorn Disciple (382) Apr 26, 2018 North Carolina
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    Locust will last for decades.
    Now that's what I'm talkin' about......


    Full view of the mini-me hopyard; Cascade on the left, Golding on the right.
    From the top cross member there are two 3/32” galvanized stranded guy wires, leaving the pic to the right.
    The wood and galv cable were scrap/scavenged, as was the PVC pipe (IV’s for liquid fert).

    [​IMG]


    The guy wires are anchored to the deck handrail with hook-bolts and turnbuckles for taking up slack.
    [​IMG]
     
  7. Jasonja1474

    Jasonja1474 Initiate (161) Oct 15, 2018 Tennessee
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    I see my house from there! Ever find any ginseng in them hills?
     
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  8. riptorn

    riptorn Disciple (382) Apr 26, 2018 North Carolina
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    Found some but for the most part I leave them be. For me, small amounts aren't worth the risk of running afoul of the law, and large stands aren't worth the risk of running afoul of the true 'sang hunters.
    However, I have wondered if ginseng would make a healthy, zippy cure-all pale ale.......
     
  9. GormBrewhouse

    GormBrewhouse Devotee (493) Jun 24, 2015 Vermont

    go ripper. lookin good, wish i could post pics. id show ya how cheap i really am, hahahahahh
     
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  10. SFACRKnight

    SFACRKnight Meyvn (1,486) Jan 20, 2012 Colorado
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    My pvc and chicken wire is an abomination....
     
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  11. GormBrewhouse

    GormBrewhouse Devotee (493) Jun 24, 2015 Vermont

    As long as it works, all good
     
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  12. Jasonja1474

    Jasonja1474 Initiate (161) Oct 15, 2018 Tennessee
    Trader

    My thoughts exactly. I work with some hunters. They usually leave a few roots in my toolbox for me every season. Brown bag style lol. Talk about a good energetic work day!!
     
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  13. Peach63

    Peach63 Zealot (548) Jul 17, 2019 New York
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    All my bines on each line are of the same variety and each variety is spaced far enough apart so they don't screw around with each other. :wink:
     
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  14. GormBrewhouse

    GormBrewhouse Devotee (493) Jun 24, 2015 Vermont

    A friend wanted some hops so I dug up cascade, centenial, chinook and Columbus for him. He planted them close and they intermingle , impossible to get apart, so, I refer to those bags as Glenys Blend.
    Really quite nice.
    My plants are 4-5 feet apart so very little mixing if any.
     
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  15. Peach63

    Peach63 Zealot (548) Jul 17, 2019 New York
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    I seem to recall reading, only female plants produce cones. So, aren't they all female?
     
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  16. VikeMan

    VikeMan Poo-Bah (1,950) Jul 12, 2009 Pennsylvania
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    I think he meant that his bines are not so close as to physically cross over each other, and thus do not cause confusion about which variety is which.
     
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  17. Peach63

    Peach63 Zealot (548) Jul 17, 2019 New York
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    Ah, ok. Clears that up! :slight_smile:
     
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  18. GormBrewhouse

    GormBrewhouse Devotee (493) Jun 24, 2015 Vermont

    Thanks vikeman
     
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  19. GormBrewhouse

    GormBrewhouse Devotee (493) Jun 24, 2015 Vermont

    Installed a few lines yesterday. If it don't freeze this weekend I'll put up the rest Monday. If they do freeze and die, modem all down, rake off the debris and figure on a late crop.
     
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  20. riptorn

    riptorn Disciple (382) Apr 26, 2018 North Carolina
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    Most recommendations suggest 2 - 3 bines per line. I have 4 training on one line now that could do well if, like gorm, they don't freeze this weekend
    I can cut the runt, but wondering about the reasoning for less than 4. Is it a nutrient issue, crowding, disease susceptibility, other causes of stunting.....?
     
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  21. Granitebeard

    Granitebeard Initiate (126) Aug 24, 2016 Maine

    The primary reason is multiple of these. Fewer bines means the plant is trying to grow less, thus what there is will be more productive. Fewer bines means nutrients don't get split up. And the big one is disease. More matter means more space for things to hide and not get enough air flow or preventative (pesticide or fungicide) in to the area thus leading to infestation or a diseased plant. Another reason is typically weight. Coir used by hop farmers have 120 lb load rating. If you are using twin and know it's rating you are ok, but the cheaper coir is only around 80lb and you are pushing that in wind with two bines from mature plants.
     
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  22. GormBrewhouse

    GormBrewhouse Devotee (493) Jun 24, 2015 Vermont

    Ripper, I'd instal a second line in the future and train 2 per line. Granitebeard is spot on in his idea. One time I ran 6 on one line. Even with the heavy baler twine it broke and upon inspection I had the beginnings of a big dease outbreak. So it all got hauled out and burned in the furnace. Can't fool around wheni T comes to desease,s. They can stay in the ground for years and then it's a constant battle.
     
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  23. riptorn

    riptorn Disciple (382) Apr 26, 2018 North Carolina
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    Seemed like 1/4" sisal would be sufficient and maybe even overkill, so that's what I got. Now your words make me wonder since the stated working limit for my roll is 44 lbs.

    That's what I'll do.

    Thanks for the input guys.......
     
    #63 riptorn, May 9, 2020
    Last edited: May 9, 2020
  24. riptorn

    riptorn Disciple (382) Apr 26, 2018 North Carolina
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    Something didn’t jibe there, and after a little more research I’m thinking I should have converted working limit to tensile strength. Working limit can be 15% - 25% of tensile strength, so the tensile of the ¼” sisal would be close to 175 lbs at a minimum. If that’s correct I’m good and as suspected approached overkill.
     
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  25. Peach63

    Peach63 Zealot (548) Jul 17, 2019 New York
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    I'm not sure what the strength of the masonry line I use is but I've never had one break. I did however, have the hooks pull out of the eaves on a windy day. Thanks to the 2 inches of snow dumped on me last night, I haven't strung mine up yet. :rage: When I have a nice crop growing, I'll post some pictures.
     
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  26. Soneast

    Soneast Champion (834) May 9, 2008 Wisconsin

    I had to pull out a three-year old Bramling Cross plant last fall due to disease. The leaves would wilt up and turn brown. It still managed to grow it's full length but after a while any new growth would always wilt up and turn brown. It even managed to produce hops, though they also turned brown. I have three other plants that I planted at the same time and they are perfectly healthy and productive, so I assumed the Bramling Cross was susceptible to something that the other plants were not. So about 2 weeks ago I planted a Cascade plant, that I received from Great Lakes Hops, in the same raised bed that the Bramling was in. I see that it's leaves are already doing something similar. Arg! Any thoughts? A virus or something?
     
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  27. GormBrewhouse

    GormBrewhouse Devotee (493) Jun 24, 2015 Vermont

    what did the root ball look like? was ther rot , odd coloring on the roots, or was there obviouse boring insect damage? inquiring minds want to know
     
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  28. Granitebeard

    Granitebeard Initiate (126) Aug 24, 2016 Maine

    I can think of a couple things, but without pictures it is hard to tell. This link provides a good run down of different diseases that it could be but were it seems to be a hill, I would looks at diseases that stay in the soil there. Might be worth trying some of the preventatives, or just pulling out the soil and putting new stuff in, still plenty of time to save a plant (mostly for next year) or start new this year.

    Link: https://www.gardeningknowhow.com/edible/vegetables/hops/hops-plant-diseases.htm
     
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  29. Soneast

    Soneast Champion (834) May 9, 2008 Wisconsin

    Ya know, being the noob hop grower that I am, I never looked at it very closely, I just pulled the crown and tossed it in my lawn waste bin to take to the compost site in town. I suppose I probably should have.
     
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  30. Soneast

    Soneast Champion (834) May 9, 2008 Wisconsin

    Hmm...I was thinking maybe downy mildew, but after looking at some google pics, that doesn't look quite right. Looking at images and descriptions on this USA Hops data sheet, I'm almost thinking it might be a virus of some sort. :astonished:
    https://www.usahops.org/cabinet/data/4.pdf

    Interesting that they actually specify Golding type hops or Golding parentage as being more susceptible, as Bramling Cross has a Golden parentage, I believe. Course, that doesn't explain the Cascade...
     
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  31. riptorn

    riptorn Disciple (382) Apr 26, 2018 North Carolina
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    @Soneast the blog post linked below has some images that look similar to what you described.
    https://growinghopsathome.blogspot.com/2012/08/verticillium-wilt-disease.html
    The blogger wasn't sure but ID'd it as possibly Verticillium Wilt. Don't bother with the link at the bottom of the bloggers post....it's broken.

    Here's another link that looked useful:
    Field Guide for Integrated Pest Management in Hops
    Verticillium wilt starts on page 25, or page 30 depending on how you search the pdf. There's info on a lot of other concerns, too.

    ETA: Well....looks like my Field Guide is the same as your USAHops pdf.
     
    #71 riptorn, May 11, 2020
    Last edited: May 11, 2020
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  32. Granitebeard

    Granitebeard Initiate (126) Aug 24, 2016 Maine

    Yeah, each type has susceptibility depending on heritage, you just have to look up what has what. Great Lakes Hops does a good job specifying on their site for each variety of hop, and the have a great google docs section linked from their site. There are too many possibilities really. Without know what you a little more about the root or bines them selves, it is tough to make a call.
     
  33. Soneast

    Soneast Champion (834) May 9, 2008 Wisconsin

    Yep, Verticillium wilt def seems like a likely culprit as well, particularly seeing as how it can be non-lethal, which would explain the full growth. It does say that Cascades are less susceptible than other hops, so will be curious to see what it does. I'll have to wait to get some more growth and cut open a bine to see if it is discolored.
     
  34. Peach63

    Peach63 Zealot (548) Jul 17, 2019 New York
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    Picked up some more masonry line to get my bines training. I was surprised to see it's only 15 lb test. Strongest they had. It's what I've always used so....
     
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  35. thebriansmaude

    thebriansmaude Initiate (99) Dec 16, 2016 Canada
    Trader

    At what point in the season are you guys cutting back the other bines from the crown ? I’ve got some bushy hops , the winning bines are starting to climb, should I hack back the rest now or wait a bit ?
     
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  36. Peach63

    Peach63 Zealot (548) Jul 17, 2019 New York
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    If the bines you plan on training are tall enough, I'd whack the rest back now. I've whacked a bit before I was ready to train. I have one more plant to train when they get a bit taller, so I'm leaving that one alone for now.
     
  37. GormBrewhouse

    GormBrewhouse Devotee (493) Jun 24, 2015 Vermont

    i do the same as peach. on the tettnang the are so many bines growing all over i actually bush hog some on my first pass of the season which was friday. others get weed wacked or cut by hand
     
  38. GormBrewhouse

    GormBrewhouse Devotee (493) Jun 24, 2015 Vermont

    It got hot, them damp which brings on the the fungus, so,,,, 2 applikays of neem oil. Really came on fast. Watch yer plants.
     
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  39. Granitebeard

    Granitebeard Initiate (126) Aug 24, 2016 Maine

    Yep, I have been treating mine since before the shoots were up, starting too early is never possible.
     
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  40. riptorn

    riptorn Disciple (382) Apr 26, 2018 North Carolina
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    Thought my plants were going to get burnt by the cold snap a couple weeks ago but I was able to protect them enough even with a low of 25°. Cascades are about 7' and Goldings about 3'.
    Picked up some neem oil concentrate yesterday and sprayed this morning.....better late than never, hopefully.
     
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