From the HBD Archive
From: Pete Soper <>
Subject: Hops
Date: 1990-03-28 20:28:26 GMT

Chris Shenton <> asked for some details, various
folks set me straight on Freshops and Dick wants some geography, so here it

I live in central North Carolina, around 15 miles South of Raleigh. I am
on the line between one climate zone and another (7 and 8, I think). I
believe there was no civilization here before the use of air conditioning.
My hop bed soil is a mixture of clay, peat moss, "soil conditioner", sand,
composted cow manure and a dash of 10-10-10 fertilizer with an emphasis on
good drainage. The beds were
tilled down a foot or so and then everything was mixed together. The beds
themselves are built up about 10 inches above the level of the surrounding
ground. They are lightly mulched with an extra layer of peat moss to hold the
soil in place and much more mulch will be added later to hold moisture and
keep the bed cool. Both beds have direct Southern exposure, although one is
going to get a bit of shade during part of the day.
The rhizomes were planted 3/12 (March, not February Mike). By coincidence
we had a week of warm weather that broke all existing records. It was 90
degrees one day at the beginning of that first week and pretty hot until the
weekend. I think that is what did it. The following week it was "only"
in the 70s but very warm overnight. Since then and with a total of 6 buds
now about 1/2 inch high everything has slowed way down as the daytime highs
are back to around 60 with overnight lows in the low 30s.
When the hops are a foot tall I'll pick the best looking 2 or 3 vines from
each plant and "train" them up lengths of heavy twine strung vetically from
attachment points either on a wire strung between two trees (one bed) or
the side of the house (the other bed).
As for Freshops - as I said it was probably weird bad luck on my part.
The final kick in the head came last week when, after saying he wasn't going
to buy rhizomes this year and thus prompting me to get into this mail order
adventure, my local homebrew supplier suddenly had a stock of THIRTEEN kinds
of rhizomes. Guess where he got them? Extra long, heavy sigh. I bought a
Saaz rhizome with 4 buds that are each 2 inches long and this rhizome is now
in a plant pot while I create another bed for it. So I too can attest to
Freshops' quality.

Pete Soper +1 919 481 3730
internet: uucp: {bu-cs,decvax,gould}!encore!soper
Encore Computer Corp, 901 Kildaire Farm Rd, bldg D, Cary, NC 27511 USA

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