Author Topic: Operation Takeback: The Great Hop Caper  (Read 801 times)

Offline phillamb168

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Operation Takeback: The Great Hop Caper
« on: September 24, 2013, 05:56:12 PM »
So here's the deal. We moved house recently - call it good luck, divine providence, what have you, but a friend of a friend's coworker was moving and as the place he was renting was his dad's, he wanted to try to find a tenant to replace them.

For us it was love at first sight - an "American-sized" house, 2500 sq feet, big ol back yard, lots of room to BBQ and to garden, etc.

We moved in, but I forgot - or rather was too bushed to take transplant - our hops that we had planted at the old place. I figured I'd ask the new tenants really nicely if I could come and pick them up, and replace them with any similarly sized planting of their choice. This was necessary because my only source for hop rhizomes (in the US) is no longer shipping to Europe, and I didn't want to have to deal with asking someone to bring over contraband live plant materials.

This would have been a fine plan, were it not for what happened literally weeks after we moved in. While the new tenants of our old place were (thank God) out on vacation, lightning struck the house and burned the attic to cinders and collapsed the second floor. I shudder to think of what would have happened had we still been living there - we never take vacation in the summer and would surely have been there.

Anyway, now the building is temporarily condemned until the structure can be replaced - most buildings here are stone walled with all of the load being carried by the exterior walls and the roof trusses, no internal support to speak of - and so nobody is allowed on the property for insurance reasons.

I want to get my hops back. The work involved in fixing the house up won't be finished for an entire year, and I don't want to wait that long. The hops themselves are in an area far away from the house and if, heaven forbid, the walls came tumbling down, I'd be far enough away to not have any problems.

I am thinking to do this one of these evenings, sometime after midnight. What I need to know is, how should I go about transplanting them? What I was figuring I'd do was follow the vines down to the ground, then dig out as much as possible whatever rhizomes I can, then cut the vine at about 6 feet high, and replant the whole thing in the next few weeks, before first frost. Will this work? Will it be a problem if part of the rhizome is broken in some way? Should be OK, right.
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Offline Slowbrew

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Re: Operation Takeback: The Great Hop Caper
« Reply #1 on: September 24, 2013, 06:01:30 PM »
As long as you get them in the ground fairly quickly and they a few weeks to set before a hard freeze I think you should be okay.  Most rhizomes are pretty tough.  You get a really large harvest next year but they should be back in good form the second year.


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Offline morticaixavier

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Re: Operation Takeback: The Great Hop Caper
« Reply #2 on: September 24, 2013, 06:01:55 PM »
should be okay but they will be shocked. It's late enough in the year that it might be okay. Any chance you can leave them there till next spring early? that's ideal.

Start about 6-12 inches from the bine and dig with a fork. loosening more than digging. once the soil is workable use your hands to pull it away from the crown. Cut the crown with as much material as you can leave and transplant that. I would be hesitant to leave any bine at all.
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Offline pinnah

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Re: Operation Takeback: The Great Hop Caper
« Reply #3 on: September 24, 2013, 08:23:30 PM »
I would be hesitant to leave any bine at all.

+1, it will die back to the root anyway due to the disturbance and season.
Next year for vegetation.

Good luck with the recovery.