Sep
    30

    Nugget Hops Harvest

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    Nugget Hop Bine

    Nugget Hop Bine

    Nugget Hops Harvest

    Nugget Hops Harvest

    The Nugget hops were ready to harvest 15 days after the Cascade and Magnum hops.  A hop yield of 1.3 pounds.  Thirty percent more than the Magnum hop harvest, less than the 1.8 pounds of Cascade hops.  I harvested the Nugget hops September 10th, the other hops August 25th.

    Not a bad harvest for first year hop plants.  Next year should yield significantly more hop cones as the hop rhizomes planted have become sizable crowns / root stocks from the photosynthesis and organic nutrients from this year.

    An essential ingredient for beers and ales, these hop cones will make an excellent IPA (India Pale Ale).  Nugget hops are for bittering with a high IBU (International Bittering Unit) measurement.  I will use my Cascade hops for aroma to complete the IPA experience.

    Nugget Hop Lupulin

    Nugget Hop Cone Lupulin

    Shown here is the yellow lupulin of the Nugget hop cone – the active ingredient of the hop.  Although known for their bittering effect and not as an aroma hop, the Nugget hop aroma is exquisite.

    If you are a homebrewer and live where you can grow hops (between 30th and 50 parallels), you have to do this.  Hops are an amazing fast growing plant and fun to watch grow.  Hops have been scarce in recent times so be self sufficient and grow your own hops!  Growing hops will complete the beer making experience and camaraderie of home brewing.

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    Categories : grow hops

    Comments

    1. Jay,
      I would think you would let the soil dry out – a large container should retain some moisture around the crown / root stock. Where you are, are you talking centigrade or fahrenheit? Either way I would think they would survive the winter – you may want to mulch slightly on top of the soil to insulate a bit and retain moisture.

      You should have plenty of rhizomes(horizontal shoots with buds) to trim off the crown for further propagating. Keep them separated by variety, it can be tricky distinguishing certain varieties of hops once planted. I will be trimming rhizomes around my hop crowns next spring to control the spreading of hops. I will be planting some of these rhizomes in other areas and try a large container or 2. 20 to 30 rhizomes – YOU ARE AMBITIOUS! You do know that will be a boatload of hops in a year or 2? You must have the room for them.

      I will keep my eye open for Kent Golding / East Kent Golding rhizomes next spring and forward you any supplier info I come across. Probably not til early spring when suppliers advertise what they will be carrying. I have not looked into rhizomes from Europe yet, there may be restrictions importing to your local. I will let you know if/when I come across any info.

    2. Jay says:

      Hey Growing Hops,
      Again, nice harvest. I am definitely pumped for next year. I have a couple questions though.

      I dug up the rhizomes as my curiousity was too strong, and I’m glad I did. The crowns really exploded over the past year. That explains the minimal growth up top this past year. So rather than leave them in the ground (because I plan to relocate the hops, I’ve moved them into large containers, by variety and they are in my root cellar now. Do you think this is a good idea? and if so, should I be providing any water/nutrients through the winter, or should I basically let them dry out in the soil and become dormant? The cellar should not drop below 6 or 7 degrees.

      I will be preparing the areas where next year’s crop will go shortly, before the ground freezes and will get them in the ground as soon as the ground can be worked.

      The last dichotomy is do I divide the rhizomes to get some more plants? or do I leave them whole so I great super growth from a fewer plants? I plan to ramp up the numbers again and intend to order another 20 to 30 rhizomes, but will likely limit to fewer varieties.

      Finally, my favourite variety is East Kent Golding. Have you ever seen the true English variety rhizome available anywhere online? Thanks for all the great info this past year…
      cheers
      Jay

    3. Glad there aren’t hop abusers out there.

      I would snip the bines to ground level. You can do it now or anytime before the first snow (I believe once the bines are dead is best, but anytime will work). I would not use plastic. Just mulch over the hop crowns (4 or more inches) with grass clippings and/or leaves to insulate the ground. You can also use hay or straw.

      The breakdown of the mulch you use will help nourish the soil. Hops are very hardy but I believe our 30 below zero winter days could kill an unprotected hop root stock. Wild hops survive but no sense taking chances with different varieties of hops that we plant.

      Once the snow melts and extreme cold temps pass, rake the mulch off to let the hop sprouts through. When you have the number of bines trained that you want (usually 1 to 3 per rope), cut the rest to the ground then mulch over the ground to help retain moisture. One school of thought is to cut the first bines for a stronger comeback. Myself, I will only do that if a freeze takes them out or damages the hop sprouts or bines.

    4. I can’t imagine anyone cutting it, maybe it snapped because I did move the top of it closer to the edge of the roof. Either way, I’m taking better care next year. For the winter should I snip it or just let it die? And do you recommend to cover the soil with some plastic?

    5. Stuart,
      Thanks. Congrats on your season. Next year the hop bines should rock. I stayed organic, I think I will add some fish emulsion and test the PH again for next year. I added compost, bone meal and blood meal to the soil this year. I also have a compost pile going this year, I will top the soil off with compost and feed them some compost tea. That should give them more than enough nutrients for rapid growth and substantial hop cone yields next year.

      Someone snipped your bine? Those bastards. Should be a capital offense, ok, well maybe a good caning. Glad it was at harvest time and you didn’t lose the bine’s hop yield. Can’t wait to see how next year goes!

      Your Warrior review had my mouth watering. Sounds pretty tasty for us IPA / hoppy beer / hoppy ale guys.
      Town Hall’s hop series, the Warrior Strong

    6. Excellent for first year. Mine grew well but I planted them too late plus I didn’t use any additives to help the process except for compost in the beginning and constant watering. Strange story though, my smaller vine got severed a couple weeks ago. Really weird, it looks like it was cut. Very suspicious. But it was at it’s peak anyways. Next year will be the year I am going to really take care of them. New twine and more growth support. I will definately use this blog for a resource. Thanks!

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