How To Grow Hops For Beer
Want to learn about how to grow hops for beer? Begin with researching the different plant varieties available. Different hops varieties are more aromatic or bitter according to the one you prefer in beer taste. Since hops are vine plants, ensure you have enough room to provide for growing.
To grow hops for beer, you will need:
- Hops female rhizomes
- Tiller (optional)
- Pole or trellis
- Bug Traps (optional)
- Fence or chicken wire (optional)
- Select female plant varieties for the hops plant. The hop vines, according to Brad McMahon (article reference below), have male and female selections, but the female plants produce the cones needed for flavoring beer. Hops are available online for purchase as rhizomes since these are root cuttings.
- Plan where to grow hops for beer. Hops grow as vines, according to Peter Soper (also referenced below), and require planting in full sun with southern exposure for the best result. Make sure to plan for plenty of room for the hops plants to grow.
- Loose the soil in the ground. Break up the area if the soil is compacted for planting for how to grow hops for beer.
- Plant the hops rhizomes. Planting, according to Brad McMahon, should be in the late winter or early springtime of August through September. Be sure to plant them according to the instructions or about 4 inches deep and about 4 feet apart if planting more than one rhizome.
- Water the hops. Hops need a lot of water. Be sure to water the hops daily and avoid building up puddles of water for how to grow hops for beer. The plant, according to Brad McMahon, requires a lot of water each day but not enough to flood the plant.
- Train the hops. Since hops are a vine plant, once they grow about one foot, stake poles or trellises in the ground next to them. Entwine the hops onto the poles to ensure they have something to wrap around and grow across. As the hops plants continue to grow, you may want to run wire or strong cords from pole to pole for how to grow hops for beer.
- Keep bugs away. The usual garden bugs, such as aphids and other animals, love to eat hops. Hops attract deer and other small animals. Build a fence or put up chicken wire to keep small animals out of the hops. Bug traps provide a chemical free way to keep bugs away. Trim the bottom foliage, according to Brad McMahon, to keep bugs and diseases from attacking your hops for how to grow hops for beer.
- Harvest the hops. Harvest the hops, according to Brad McMahon, in mid-March to May, when the flowers’ edges turn brown. At this stage, the hops are ready for picking and may present a decent crop in the second year of growing for how to grow hops for beer.
Hops growing primer