From the HBD Archive
From: hplabs!gatech!raven!rcd (Dick Dunn)
Subject: homegrown hops - yield, drying
Date: 1989-08-16 03:42:06 GMT

In response to the question about yield on hops--I've found that my plants
took several years to establish themselves reasonably. The yield goes up
each year--this is their sixth year and they're still improving. Our soil
is probably not well suited to hops--heavy clay. Our climate almost
certainly isn't suited to them--erratic spring (which doesn't seem to
bother too much), relatively short growing season, and drydrydrydry. But
they are hardy. I seem to remember a note from Wegeng some time back to
the effect that it should only take a couple of years? What experience do
other folks have with hops establishing themselves?

About drying: Hops can certainly be air-dried and frozen. However, a
trick I haven't figured out is how to dry them to a reasonably consistent
moisture level. It doesn't really affect the storage; the trick is knowing
how much you've got. If the moisture content can alter the weight by a
factor of two or more, how do you figure how much bittering or aromatic
effect you're getting?!? (0.5 oz of commercial hops might be equivalent to
1.5 oz of inadequately dried homegrown hops.)

I can guess that if I dry them moderately, then freeze them, and find that
I get little ice droplets in the bag after they've been in the freezer for
a while, I probably didn't dry them enough. But how much is too much?
Dick Dunn {ncar;ico;stcvax}!raven!rcd (303)494-0965
or rcd@raven.uucp

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