Thursday, January 19, 2012

Getting Ready for the 2012 Hop Season

Are you ready for our next growing season? Time to order supplies, take soil samples for testing, and plan any changes you may want to make in your hop yards.
We enjoyed a great workshop last week in Morganton--thank you Appalachian State for sponsoring it, and thanks, Jeanine, for presenting the hop information. It was a great opportunity to hear what others are doing. With that in mind, I hope growers will follow and contribute to this blog. We can all learn by sharing information and experiences.
A question that's been on my mind lately is: what material is best for the lines used for growing the bines. We've used sisal in the past, and while we've not had any problems with breakage, it stretches and shrinks a lot, resulting in a good bit of slack at times. On our windy site, young bines get blown around quite a bit. I know many growers in the Pacific NW use coconut coir. Does it stretch less? Has anyone ever used poly bailing twine? What are your thoughts?
I hope those of you who follow the blog will encourage other growers to do the same, and to join our guild. Good luck -- Here's hoping that the 2012 hop season will be the best yet.
-Rita & John, Blue Ridge Hops


  1. I will help promote this and be willing to contribute, too. My contacts are all in my office so will do next week. Thanks for taking this on, Rita. It will be a good way for the hop growers to communicate. Jeanine

  2. Only just joined , but yes we are using Poly Twine after seeing this used in South Africa, by far the cheapest way to string hops.

    over the years we have tried Sisal ropes, and some Nylon reusable ropes, as we still hand pick, but are changing over to poly on the whole field.

    Rick C
    BBG Hops Project