Introduction: Growing Hops at Home
There is nothing quite like using fresh hops in your home brew. Recently, I had to relocate my hops later in the season then I would have liked to. However, now they are in a better location with full sunlight. After quite a bit of research I believe these are the basic steps for initial planing and can be used for moving/transplanting hops.
I will document the development of my hops trellis if you are interested in how we set this up at our home.
- Hops - Field Crowns/ rhizomes - I used Field Crowns due to them having an additional year of growing to increase my yield. I ordered my hops from Great Lakes Hops. It is ideal to order local hops if possible.
- Potting Soil - https://amzn.to/2XcLSse
- Fertilizer -I will explain more in step 1 but I use Miracle-Gro Shake 'n Feed - All Purpose - https://amzn.to/2XC3YTn
- Garden Claw - https://amzn.to/3ccywAr
Step 1: Picking Fertilizer and Potting Soil
I chose to use the Miracle-Gro Shake 'n Feed - All Purpose fertilizer. This fertilizer has a composition of 12-4-8 which means it has 12 parts nitrogen to 4 parts phosphorus to 8 parts potassium. Hops enjoy a nitrogen rich soil to promote growth. This switches later in the season to promote flowering and nitrogen will inhibit this. So this fertilizer is ideal for promoting growth and preparing the soil for winter.
Miracle-Gro Shake 'n Feed - All Purpose - https://amzn.to/2XC3YTn
Plotting soil is ideal due to the ability to retain moisture and provide nutrients in addition to the needed nitrogen.
You can get this at a local nursery or order it on Amazon - Potting Soil - https://amzn.to/2XcLSse
Step 2: Select Your Hops Growing Location
Hops thrive in full sun. They also require good draining soil. I chose to relocate the hops to some of the raised bed gardens in our yard. The previous owners had let these get overgrown.
I discovered that the garden claw worked great for breaking up the overgrowth to be able to easily remove it. This is one similar to the one I use - Garden Claw - https://amzn.to/3ccywAr
Begin by clearing any growth that may compete with the hops. Level the soil as much as possible.
Step 3: Dig a Hole and Mix in Potting Soil and Fertilizer
start by digging a 1 foot deep hole. This is not how deep you will be planting the hops however it is the soil that needs to be enriched.
- Loosen the soil in the bottom of the hole
- Add fertilizer to the bottom of the hole
- Add planting soil
- Add soil that you removed from the hole
- Repeat until you have only about 4 inches from the surface.
- Add you Hop plant here and ensure the eyes of the rhizome are pointed up (if rhizome and not crown)
Hops should be spaced between 2-3 feet apart to reduce the roots from growing into each other.
Step 4: Finish It Up
ensure that you cover the crowns roots and keep all leaves exposed. It is ideal to have the hoops slightly mounded. This helps ensure that moisture does not pool around the plants (which may cause mildew and increase the likelihood of some hops diseases.
Let me know how it goes for you or if you have any suggestions or questions.
Please see my Instructables for;
- Building a hops trellis (still in development)
- Training hops (still in development)
- Harvesting Hop (still in development)
Participated in the