Magnum Hop Cone Harvest 2015By
I should have harvested my Magnum hops last weekend but vacation got in the way. They are still in pretty good shape and it only took one cigar’s time to pick all the hop cones. It was a relaxing sunny day for the harvest.
With my trellis / rigging (a rope and pulley system) of the hops, I can pick standing up. No bending, no ladder, no stress as I lower the bines wrapped around the rope. When I am finished, I raise the hop bines again so the leaves can gather and store more energy in the crown or root stock for next year’s growth.
I ended up with 1.4 pounds of “wet” hop cones. Not a stellar harvest, but I will take what I can get. Once dry they will weigh 20 – 25% of their current weight (probably 5 to 6 ounces of dry hops).
I dry my hops in my basement under a ceiling fan on days when the air conditioner is running (low humidity). They dry out in 2 to 3 days this way. There is nothing like the smell of hops! Even though this variety is considered a “bittering” hop, they are quite aromatic.
The Magnum bines (I have 5 wrapped around this rope), do not show the cones very well. They are mostly hidden on the inside under the leaves. That is why you only see a few dozen cones.
The Cascade hops show off there cones more on the outside. They are pretty impressive looking. I actually harvested half of them the same day (I will right about it next week). The half of the cones I did not pick were small and I am sure they will be a bit bigger by this next weekend when I plan to finish the Cascade harvest.
My Nugget hops are just burrs and small cones. They are a minimum of another 2 weeks before they will be ready to harvest.