Wildlife and Growing Hops...

Fri Apr 23, 2010 10:18 am

Decided to try and grow some hops for the first time, but had some concerns. There are woods in my backyard. I planted the hops by the treeline because i was planning on running some twine up a large tree for the hops to grow on. There is quite a bit of wildlife in the area. There are deer, turkeys, squirrels, raccoons, opossums, and some rabbits. Does anyone know if i need to worry about any of these critters eating my plants, or will they just leave them alone? Any experience with this or any tips would be great.

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Re: Wildlife and Growing Hops...

Sat Apr 24, 2010 4:56 am

I don't have any personal experience with this but I know that others have had issues with deer. I would also bet that rabbits would love them. Goats and sheep will leave them alone but I think many other wild animals love them. Best of luck!
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Re: Wildlife and Growing Hops...

Sat Apr 24, 2010 6:34 am

I personally have not had an issue with deer (they are in my yard every night eating out of my birdfeeders) - maybe the feeders are why they don't? I have lost a few young hop shoots to rabbits - not much of an issue - I don't think they like the taste or the prickly bines. No problem with raccoons. If you run into a problem with deer, you will need to fence around the hop bines - chicken wire will do but you would need to go up 6 feet. Best of luck.
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Re: Wildlife and Growing Hops...

Tue May 25, 2010 4:30 am

I live in what sounds like a similar type of area as the original poster, and i had my very first hop plant (a Cascade) growing in a pot to get it started and then i transplanted it to a fenced in garden last week sometime, and in 2 days, it was gone. It was getting to be about 2 feet or so tall. My guess is it was a deer, but i have no idea. The fence around it was 6 feet, so i was hoping that would do. In the back of my mind i figured i should go 7 or 8 ft, but since it was already there, i figured i'd be ok. Maybe it wasn't a deer... i don't know. I know turkeys hang out in the area, but didn't know if they'd go after it or not. I was just amazed at how quick it disappeared.

Anyway, i'd recommend some kind of protection against the critters and i know my 6ft fence didn't seem to do much for me...

Stlcards.... Any update on how your hops are doing versus the local wildlife so far and anything you've done to improve their chances?

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Re: Wildlife and Growing Hops...

Wed May 26, 2010 8:45 am

So far so good!!! I have 2 cascades growing right by the tree line. They are just starting to climb the twine. The bigger one of the two is only about 1.5 feet so far, and the other is close behind. I have done noting at all to protect them (maybe not the smartest idea). I see deer and turkey daily in the same area. Nothing has bothered it yet. Maybe i am lucky, so i better knock on wood!! I will try and post some pictures in the near future.

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Re: Wildlife and Growing Hops...

Wed May 26, 2010 9:58 am

Rabbits have never bothered mine and they can get pretty desperate around this dry NM climate.

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Re: Wildlife and Growing Hops...

Thu May 27, 2010 1:36 pm

Dude, that's awesome! Hops + Deer + No Fence boggles my mind... heh, but keep doing what ever works for ya man.... Yea... if you get some pics, that'd be cool.... I'll have to live my hop season vicariously though yours this year... Maybe it was raccoons that got mine... not sure how the punks got through the fence.. lol... oh well.... That's cool that yours are growing... :jnj
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