Thursday, May 02, 2013


This is our old hop house. Although the sills are going, alas, it still has drying racks, bins, and much of the paraphernalia of hop production within its walls. 

At one time many upstate farms had such buildings. New York was once the hop capital of the world.

Today interest is emerging in resurrecting the once-vital industry. Even the governor has gotten in the act.

My brother and I were talking about it a while back, and never one to let the grass grow under his feet, he bought some rhizomes and gave me three of them. There is one each of the varieties Magnum, Nugget, and Cascade. 

Hop rhizome

I used this page for instructions on how to plant them, and the boss and I put them in the ground today. Since we really don't have time to mess with setting hop poles and all that, we planted them along the heifer yard fence. It's good stout page wire and should give them a sturdy place to run.

I am quite excited about this attempt to bring back a bit of NY history....sure hope they grow.

Thriving hops 


joated said...

As microbreweries thrive, so will the need for locally produced hops. I know of two in our area (northern PA and southern Finger Lakes) that brag about using locally grown hops and a third that has its own farm.

I wish you well as you try to find a new, viable cash crop.

ellie k said...

We were in Germany two years ago right before the October Fest. We saw many fields of hops when we arrived but by the time we left most of them had been cut. They cut them at the top of the poles and let the vine slide down the pole to harvest. After the hops are harvested they use the rest of the vine to feed livestock. Most of the cattle there are kept inside large barns year around so they must be feed all year.

threecollie said...

Joated, I think it is going to be a boon for at least some farmers. I am just growing them for the fun of it...something new, that I have never tried before.

Ellie, how cool! I have watched some videos of them being harvested, but haven't seen any growing since I was a kid, and then only one or two plants on display at the fair.

Terry and Linda said...

How cool! You just might be on to another cash crop. There were hop farms in in the 70s but they didn't last. Like joated says the microbreweries will love having their own local hops.

Pretty neat, Marianne!


Cathy said...

"Thriving hops !"

Hope your hop plants are as full of bounce :)

(Love the photo of the hop house)

threecollie said...

Linda, I am all excited about them even with only three plants. I love growing stuff! Is your little canna sprouting yet?

Cathy, wish you could have seen the silly bunnies. By the time I got outside with the camera they were leaving. However, a great big one would sneak up behind a smaller one and bomp him with his front paws. The little one would hop away, but then the big one would do it again, and the little one would shoot straight up in the air. it was hilarious!