How to Plant Hops for Home BrewingFriday, March 20th, 2009
Planting hops is a straight forward process. This article will walk you through what to consider when planting your hops. If you have not done so already, see our article on planning out your hops yard. You will need an area that is sunny, has good drainage, high quality soil, and a place for the hops to climb. Planting is best done in early spring when the threat of frost is gone, but not after May.
To plant the rhizomes, first dig a hole about one foot deep and one foot around. It is recommended to space plants at least five feet apart, but plants of the same variety can be three feet apart. Make sure to write down where each rhizome is located if you are planting different varieties.
Fill the hole with compost 2/3 of the way, then top it off with high quality potting soil. Any kind of compost, commercial fertilizer or manure will do. Put the rhizome about two inches under the soil in a little mound, horizontal, or vertically with the buds pointing up.
Cover the rhizome and give it a dose of water. Make sure to water it regularly for the whole season, but don’t soak it.
In the first season do not expect much growth. In a few months the first vines will emerge.
Only in the following summer will the vines really take off and start to yield a high number of cones that can be dried and used in the kettle!