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Growing hops

http://www.thebrewingnetwork.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=21&t=9011

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Posted: Sun Apr 27, 2008 7:35 pm
by thatguy314
FeldmarshalReinheitsgebot wrote:also on the Magnum

I've been using Magnum in my lagers due to the lack of German aroma hops .. there is no obtrusive taste from it .. N.B. my lagers include pilsner malt so I'm doing 90 minute boils



for the A.A.
the first year try splitting a batch .. with one split use commercial hops with a known A.A. with the other split use your homegrown hops

compare the resulting beers for bitterness

once you've got that done you know what your hop plant turns out for A.A .. well this was 2/3 as bitter as beer made with 10 A.A. Magnum, so I've got a 6.6 A.A. Magnum, growing conditions will vary from year to year, so maybe repeat this experiment for a few years, after awhile you'll know what your plant does, after 3 years I imagine it would be pretty set

a lot of work I know, thats why I only went for the aroma types


Thanks. That sounds like a very good way to do it. I went for Magnum b/c I live in the NE and they're supposed to be very hardy and fairly disease resistant. Since I'm growing these at my parents house which I don't live at and can't check every day, I thought a hardier variety might be the best way to go... we'll see I guess.

Posted: Tue Apr 29, 2008 4:55 pm
by Field
thatguy314 wrote:Thanks. That sounds like a very good way to do it. I went for Magnum b/c I live in the NE and they're supposed to be very hardy and fairly disease resistant. Since I'm growing these at my parents house which I don't live at and can't check every day, I thought a hardier variety might be the best way to go... we'll see I guess.


I didn't see any Magnum rhizomes, next year I'll definitely put some in if I can find them.

Posted: Tue Apr 29, 2008 11:12 pm
by thatguy314
FeldmarshalReinheitsgebot wrote:
thatguy314 wrote:Thanks. That sounds like a very good way to do it. I went for Magnum b/c I live in the NE and they're supposed to be very hardy and fairly disease resistant. Since I'm growing these at my parents house which I don't live at and can't check every day, I thought a hardier variety might be the best way to go... we'll see I guess.


I didn't see any Magnum rhizomes, next year I'll definitely put some in if I can find them.


Well, if it takes I can always send you some.

Re: Growing hops

Posted: Wed Sep 10, 2008 2:12 pm
by ApresSkiBrewer
I put 3 magnum in this year in NE... but it was a weird spring and a late frost took 2 of them (I had 3 golding, 2 willa's and 2 centennial survive as well) (I am near the Connecticut River in Mid NH... well, I was, my hop plants are still there)

I was planning on using them for bittering, but as people were saying just use that years avg. AA for the variety, or I was thinking of brewing calculating the AA right in the middle (so if the range was 11%-13%, just calling it 12%) and if it came across too bitter or not enough in the first few batches... making adjustments.

Stupid? Make sense?

Good luck with the magnums in the area! Only one of the centennial gave me (well, my father) hops this year, I am hoping at least one of each variety will give me hops next year...

Re: Growing hops

Posted: Fri Sep 12, 2008 7:28 pm
by t-rocket
Reading through this thread there are several points I'd like to touch on. These are things I have learned during the past five years of growing my own hops.

Living in a residential area, and having a well manicured lawn and garden beds, I use hops for beautification of my yard as well as fresh brewing hops to last well into March and April of the following year. As you may have read, the local climate dictates how well certain varieties will do in your area. I have wet springs and hot summers. I grow Chinook, Cascades and Galena - these seem to do well in the 100 F August heat. This past year was great, with harvest concluding yesterday. A few tips I have learned the hard way follow;

1. If you buy rhizomes in the spring, try to get them directly from a hop farm without the middle man. They do better when, clipped, shipped and planted as soon as possible. Try getting from farm such as Hops Direct. The quality is better than buying from homebrew outlets in my experience, and the lagged time before planting is decreased.

2. Never store in plastic bag, especially with moist cloth. It is promoting rot and decay. This myth of storage started somewhere and it has been responsible for many rhizomes never growing once planted. If you cannot plant immediately upon receiving the rhizomes, just lay out in the open, in the air, in cool dark place, until planting.

3. When planting, place the rhizome on end, straight up with buds pointed skyward, and bury with tip 1-inch below dirt. Add 1/2 inch of green manure over dirt.

4. Third-year crowns will be shooting off long rhizomes, and if you want to contain the plant you must dig up the crown each spring and remove the expansion growth.

5. The crown will be significantly less vibrant on its 5th season. I will now remove crowns completely after 4 years and replant their rhizomes to keep the plants and hop flowers big and vibrant. First year cuttings can outperform 5th-year crowns.

6. Hops will grow in any direction. You can growth them on any structure, but the yield is much better if they grow up high.

7. Water daily if in hot humid climates.

Below are some images from my 2008 harvest.

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