Author Topic: Trim back first shoots?  (Read 924 times)

Offline corkybstewart

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Re: Trim back first shoots?
« Reply #15 on: April 01, 2015, 12:20:36 PM »
I'll try a side by side-I've got about 20 crown so I'll trim 6-3 with the weedwhacker, 3 with the shoots pulled and see what happens.
I'd really just rather be brewing in sunny Carlsbad New Mexico

Offline chumley

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Re: Trim back first shoots?
« Reply #16 on: April 01, 2015, 01:54:42 PM »
If you are going to eat the first hop shoots, you might consider covering them up with grass clippings, dirt, or even a plate, much like the French grow white asparagus.  I have tried them both ways and like them much better this way, they are more tender.  The green shoots, not buried, are more like chewing on rope.

Offline corkybstewart

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Re: Trim back first shoots?
« Reply #17 on: April 04, 2015, 07:53:43 AM »
I took 2 plants, one of them I cut the shoots at ground level, the other one I pulled the shoots free from the crown.  We'll see which one does better.
I'd really just rather be brewing in sunny Carlsbad New Mexico

Offline coolman26

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Re: Trim back first shoots?
« Reply #18 on: April 04, 2015, 08:02:18 AM »
When I cut my shoots back, they are usually about 2/3' long.  Last year I did it scientifically.  I ran over them with the lawn mower.  I actually had the best crop I've ever had after letting them grow longer before cutting them back.  I cut them back in the beginning of May.  I also trained more bines too.  I think you can get more from your hills if you cut them back. 

Offline b-hoppy

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Re: Trim back first shoots?
« Reply #19 on: April 04, 2015, 08:41:37 AM »
Just a follow-up about removing the early shoots from a disease prevention angle.  For those of you on facebook, here's a page that deals with hop growing in the PNW: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Northwest-Hop-Information-Network/147514331928522?fref=photo  For those who aren't, the following was taken from their page recently.

"Thorough removal of surface crown buds and shoots in spring is of utmost importance in the PNW for delaying both mildews. Many reports coming in of unusually high levels of powdery in Washington for early April, which emphasizes the need for aggressive pruning to eliminate overwintered mildew. Above is a yard in Oregon that was crowned very well--powdery mildew will not survive here and must blow in to get started"

Offline mabrungard

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Re: Trim back first shoots?
« Reply #20 on: April 04, 2015, 08:51:01 AM »
I just saw a post from HopUnion (I think) on their Facebook page that shows a tractor traveling along the rows with a gas flame unit that burns off the new growth from each crown. No cutting for them.
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Offline duboman

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Re: Trim back first shoots?
« Reply #21 on: April 04, 2015, 08:54:27 AM »
My plants are now entering their 3rd year and I plan on cutting them back, just have to wait for them to actually start growing, soil temps here are still quite cold :(
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Offline b-hoppy

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Re: Trim back first shoots?
« Reply #22 on: April 04, 2015, 10:08:01 AM »
I just saw a post from HopUnion (I think) on their Facebook page that shows a tractor traveling along the rows with a gas flame unit that burns off the new growth from each crown. No cutting for them.

Right on!  The organic growers sometimes utilize 'fire' as a non-chemical way to control weeds, so if they have the equipment, why not utilize it?  Everyone has their own way to accomplish this task so it's all good! : https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lD_ID6f_ByQ

Offline klickitat jim

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Re: Trim back first shoots?
« Reply #23 on: April 04, 2015, 08:50:39 PM »
Interesting, I thought they only did that when they were stripping a field of an old hop in preparation for a new variety

Offline Phil_M

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Re: Trim back first shoots?
« Reply #24 on: April 05, 2015, 09:37:38 AM »
I guess if they trimmed back the first shoots, any mildew spores could be disturbed and still exist near to the plant. I'd imagine burning destroys the mildew entirely.
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Offline pinnah

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Re: Trim back first shoots?
« Reply #25 on: April 07, 2015, 06:49:19 AM »
Curiously, I have found that if I let the first shoots go, and they survive any late freezes, they actually out grow the foliage eating pests that I have.  Pretty sure that is the hop strategy.....outgrow your enemies.  :D Mildew is not a problem here however.

As far as eating them....if they are green they are goat feed.  The only ones I eat are when I am digging/pruning wandering rhizomes.  The fresh shoots are white and fleshy with the tips bent over like a bean sprout.

Trimming.... used to use the Denny method of grab a handful and rip, but lately I have taken up the weed whacker.
I might be turning into a pragmatic old guy.

Offline micsager

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Re: Trim back first shoots?
« Reply #26 on: June 11, 2015, 08:21:08 AM »
Good info. I don't have enough crowns to really do a good side-by-side test myself. I started growing hops after I got the book, so I trimmed from the start without knowing how much affect it had. I have been trimming when most of them were over 4" tall, but I'm interested to know how tall everyone else lets theirs get before cutting back. I'm in Eastern PA and am just starting to see the first shoots (maybe 1" tall) on my Brewer's Gold, and its still getting down near freezing so I want to make sure that the plants are protected.

you can eat those early shoots like asparagus. reason enough to cut them back right there.
Eat the trimmings? I will have to try that this year. How tall do you let them get when you eat them? I imagine they get pretty woody pretty quickly.

Puterbough Farms in Yakima actually sells pickled hop shoots on their website:

www.hopsdirect.com

(good source for hops as well)