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Brews & Views Bulletin Board Service * Brews and Views Archive 2008 * Archive through August 26, 2008 * Hops From Young Vines < Previous Next >

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Tom E
Member
Username: Tennessee_tom

Post Number: 119
Registered: 03-2008
Posted From: 63.166.216.16
Posted on Wednesday, July 23, 2008 - 01:02 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

I have a Cascade vine in its first *full* year of growth. It was planted early last year, but didn't produce much. This year, it is about 6 meters, and producing what appears to be a reasonably good crop. (Its neighbor is a lacklustre Centennial vine that is barely growing and bears no fruit.)

The problem is, what I've picked so far has only yielded about 22_g (0.8_oz) after drying. That's hardly enough for even bothering with. Also, while there seems to be plenty of yellow lupulin in the centers, the aroma is clearly dominated by the grassy smell of the leaves. This leads me to believe the plant is not mature enough to produce "usable" hops, or maybe the growing conditions are nonideal? I don't see any evidence of seeds in the cones, and most are about an inch or so (25.4_mm) in length.

Please advise,
Tom
 

Dave Witt
Senior Member
Username: Davew

Post Number: 1146
Registered: 03-2003
Posted From: 71.194.189.126
Posted on Thursday, July 24, 2008 - 01:52 am:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Were the cones fully mature? Did they have a papery feel to them? You should not pick them till the cone begins to get more of a pale color and a lighter papery feel. Sometimes the lupulin will look nice and they'll smell nice, but it's still too early to pick. My Cascades are still 3-4 weeks from harvesting, but I am in northern IL.

I have used hops that were from a small 1st yr vine without problem.
 

Tom E
Member
Username: Tennessee_tom

Post Number: 120
Registered: 03-2008
Posted From: 70.150.224.202
Posted on Thursday, July 24, 2008 - 02:47 am:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

They looked ripe to me. Can you tell anything from this pic?
Cascade Hops
 

tim roth
Advanced Member
Username: Hopdude

Post Number: 675
Registered: 03-2003
Posted From: 12.214.15.157
Posted on Thursday, July 24, 2008 - 05:10 am:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

they "look" too fresh to be picked. cheers,tim
 

Tom E
Member
Username: Tennessee_tom

Post Number: 121
Registered: 03-2008
Posted From: 63.166.216.16
Posted on Thursday, July 24, 2008 - 02:47 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Thanks, guys. I guess I picked them a bit too early. Fortunately, I still have Crosby & Baker.

Cheers,
Tom
 

Vance Barnes
Senior Member
Username: Vancebarnes

Post Number: 3299
Registered: 03-2003
Posted From: 74.7.7.66
Posted on Thursday, July 24, 2008 - 08:12 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Usually they're more of a pale yellow/green when they're ready. You should also be able to see yellow crystals on the little hairs down in between the petals (I know they're not really petals, but what are they called?).
 

Tom E
Member
Username: Tennessee_tom

Post Number: 122
Registered: 03-2008
Posted From: 63.166.216.16
Posted on Friday, July 25, 2008 - 01:01 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

"Petals" works just fine for me.
 

Troy Robinson
Junior Member
Username: Troybinso

Post Number: 35
Registered: 10-2006
Posted From: 68.189.138.16
Posted on Friday, July 25, 2008 - 02:17 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Last summer I talked to the manager of one of Anheuser Busch's hop farms in Northern Idaho while he was giving us a tour. He said when there is a yellowish stripe on the flower, going from top to bottom, that it should be ready to pick. He said the same thing about the pale color and the papery feel.

I think the petals are called bracts, but I am not 100 percent on that one.
 

priorm
Junior Member
Username: Priorm

Post Number: 87
Registered: 01-2006
Posted From: 96.227.237.32
Posted on Tuesday, July 29, 2008 - 03:37 am:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Here are some more early hops. These are Goldings off a mature plant. I'm in SE PA and pulled about half the hops off the plant. This amounted to only 4 ounces. That's not going to make much beer!

Not sure why I get such a pathetic yield. The hops have mulch on them. I dig compost into the soil and they are on drip irrigation. They get about 3-4 gallons of water a day.

Any thoughts?

Early Goldings
 

Paul Erbe
Senior Member
Username: Perbe

Post Number: 1187
Registered: 05-2001
Posted From: 64.233.251.195
Posted on Tuesday, July 29, 2008 - 02:02 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Goldings just never produced very well for me. I have tried several other import varieties as well and none of them are very prolific.

Cascade on the other hand goes nuts.

I just reread your post, I would not water them so heavily. Hops are like weeds, once the plant is established they need very little care. About all I do is top dress the spot they grow with some good compost in the fall.
 

priorm
Junior Member
Username: Priorm

Post Number: 88
Registered: 01-2006
Posted From: 162.44.245.51
Posted on Tuesday, July 29, 2008 - 05:20 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Paul,

Thanks for your feedback.

I think you are right about the Goldings yield. Checking the Hop Union specs (http://www.hopunion.com/hopunion-variety-databook.pdf), it lists the yield at 900 - 1300 lbs./ac.. This is one of the lowest yielding hops listed.

Hmmmmm... less water. I heard hops can consume large amounts of water. I also read that yellowing of leaves is a sign that the plant is getting too much water. I'm not seeing any yellowing so I think I'm OK. I was really thinking I wasn't giving the plant enough water but it sounds like you give much less and have had good success. OK, thanks.
 

Kevin Kowalczyk
Intermediate Member
Username: Itsfunbrewingbeer

Post Number: 265
Registered: 10-2007
Posted From: 12.165.82.136
Posted on Tuesday, July 29, 2008 - 06:42 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

I just looked up my US Saaz. 600-1000 lb/ac.
 

Paul Erbe
Senior Member
Username: Perbe

Post Number: 1188
Registered: 05-2001
Posted From: 64.233.251.195
Posted on Tuesday, July 29, 2008 - 07:19 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

It is really like grass. If you water it everyday it will develop a very shallow root structure and be quite intolerant to drought. If you water less frequently a deeper root structure develops putting the plant in better position to deal with shortages.

I only water my vegetables garden once a week and only if we have not had any appreciable rainfall. I will have hundreds of tomatoes and those puppies are full of water.