Hops Abound

Hops 2011

This year's hops

Another quick post, it’s this year’s hop update. Here in Ireland we’ve had a fantastic spring, the temperature has been fairly high and it’s been sunny. I think most of my hops sprouted in February, and as you can see, they’ve gotten pretty big.  From the left, just creeping in to the picture is my Cascade plant, it’s tall but it got very wind battered over the last couple of weeks. Next we have me among the Germans: Taurus, Me, Hallertau and then in the corner is Northern Brewer. On the larger wires there is Tettnang, and on the right is my largest and oldest hop, Fuggles. They’re doing well so far apart from a bit of wind burn, the key now is to keep the aphids off them. More updates later in the season!

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4 Comments

Filed under Beer, Hops

4 responses to “Hops Abound

  1. kenanddot

    Jings Ritchie! They’re amazing. Were you watering them during April? Mine are no way near that big. My largest is probably only a metre at the moment. I think I need to give them a big dose of compost or something. (They’re all in pots–maybe that has something to do with it.)

    • stoutfellow

      No I hardly watered them at all. The big ones are well established, they have their roots down deep I’d say. The soil is covered with fabric and bark, that helps retain water. I watered the cascade a bit, because it’s growing in a malt sack. You’re probably right about the pots, I’d say the fact that the roots are very deep means a steady supply of water. Bear in mind not that they’re 3 or 4 years old the largest ones, it takes 3 years to reach full potential.

  2. Taf

    Hi Ritchie. The plants look great. How many bines to you let go up from each plant? Cheers, Billy.

    • stoutfellow

      Hi Billy. I know that the books etc say only let three or so go up, and I think that’s a good idea while the plant is young or getting established. My Fuggles for instance throws out about 30 shoots I would guess, who knows? The problem is almost that it grows too quickly, for instance the Hallertauer which is also very strong has already reached its growing limit, and it’s only mid may, so I let them go bushy around the bottom, I don’t think it makes a difference once they’re strong. If yours are not growing so high it’s probably a good idea to let 3 or four climb and prune back the smaller ones. If you cut them off a little below the surface they often have a little bit of root and you can propagate new hop plants! Another reason to prune away the base shoots and leaves is it discourages insects who would otherwise live there

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