Commingling Hop Bines


    Avoid Dissimilar Varieties Intertwining

    You need to keep dissimilar hop varieties from intertwining.

    Magnum and Cascade Bines Intermingling

    These hops are planted about 7 feet apart at the base but the 2 plants on the outsides of the center peak, angle in a couple feet to gain some height.  Here the Magnum and Cascade bines are starting to intermingle at the tops – not good.  Once dissimilar hop varieties mix like this, it is difficult to separate later during harvesting.  You want to keep the varieties separate, especially these 2, Magnum is a bittering hop and Cascade an aroma hop.  All I did was take a telescoping pole and separate them.  I swung them to the opposite side of the bine heading downward  (their weight is getting to be too much unsupported to keep going up or sideways).

    Left to right: Nugget, Magnum Cascade

    June 13th

    As you can see from the 3 in this picture, the laterals are not close enough (yet) to try to intermingle.  They have in the past and they probably will again, I just stay on top of it and don’t let them by separating with a pole and “train them” to go down or wrap to the other side away from the next bine.  One year I didn’t stay on top of it (I was out of town for a week) and thought I would just separate them at harvest time – BIG MISTAKE.  It took at least an hour to untangle and there was still some intermixing.   That’s why it is important to keep them separate, unless they are the same variety, then it doesn’t matter.

    Morale of this post – when planting, plant similar varieties 3 feet or more apart and dissimilar varieties at the bare minimum 5 feet apart.  This was an important point to make to save you some agony in the future.  I hope this helps you out.


    Categories : Fifth Year Hops


    1. Grow Hops says:

      Sorry to hear about this. I have not had to deal with Downy mildew with my hops yet. First is determining whether it is Downy mildew, powdery mildew or some other culprit – not always easy to determine. I would imagine a fungicide would be necessary. Being a consumable product (hop cones), you don’t want any toxic chemicals to saturate your cones. Check with local garden centers, hop forums… I can only give you an educated guess (my education on powdery mildew control is lacking). I found a non-toxic powdery mildew killer online here: http://www.growerstrust.com/products/powdery-mildew-killer there may be others. Best of luck. Let us know how things turn out.

    2. Andy B. says:

      Tony… It would appear I have some downy mildew rearing its head in one of my Nugget laterals.. I have brown discoloration of the bine, and the leaves and young flowering cones have started to wilt and brown up the past two days… is there anything off the shelf I can spray, or do to fight this? Do I have to worry about this spreading to other bines?

      Would enjoy your thoughts.


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