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What are you growing? 2018

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specifically...

  • total height ?
  • whats that running horizontal between the beds ?
  • what timber did you use ?
  • are they anchored to the raised bed or into the ground ?
  • any wind issues ?

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Hops would go really good in wicking beds James. 

Especially with some well rotted manure/compost rich beds and where you are. Perfect combination 

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I was thinking exactly the same thing when I saw Otto's photo.   It's just the sort of demonstration crop we like to grow at the garden too.  Our structures have generally been left alone by the public.  We have some low level vandalism (hose lines get cut, the scarecrow gets assaulted) but nothing has ever been wantonly pulled down.  I'd love to have a crack at this.  Pride of Bayswater ? Hmm. 

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6 hours ago, James of Bayswater said:

specifically...

  • total height ?
  • whats that running horizontal between the beds ?
  • what timber did you use ?
  • are they anchored to the raised bed or into the ground ?
  • any wind issues ?

Not sure exactly but the pieces were 3m I think, or maybe 3.6m. It was a few years ago they were built. 

It's a soaker hose thingy. Not the greatest way to do it but I'll be setting up a better way when I get them moved to our place next year. Or having another look it might just be the fence behind them.

Oak, well that's what the label on them said. 

They're screwed into the raised bed, and no wind issues so far. There are braces on the top corners as well. 

The lines themselves are 3mm rigging wire driven into the soil. I only used it because I wanted something that would last years. 

Edited by Otto Von Blotto

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Cheers Otto,

I am inspired.  Bringing people into the garden is one of my objectives and structures add a lot of interest and spark people's curiosity - especially if they are 3+metres tall !  Folks love to check out my bean tepees or the pumpkins rambling over the pallets.  There going to love hops scaling the bines.     And I think I should be able to find a use for the produce 😉

From what I know the rhizome spreads laterally and doesn't seem terribly deep rooted so we should be right.  My wicking beds aren't as deep as they look because the bottom 300mm is actually occupied by the water reservior.   But they will certainly eliminate the need for a soaker hose or any other irrigation.  Conditions should be ideal.  And the garden is just a couple of k's away from where the Pride of Ringwood strain was developed so we should be on the money in terms of climate. 

If I can bother you with one more question  -  How do you harvest ?  Ladders are an issue in a public garden - it's an insurance and OHS thing.  The statistics for old fat blokes falling off ladders are horrendous. 😮

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Well I use a ladder but some guys construct trellises that can be lowered for harvest. That would be easier. 

They actually can get quite deep. Rhizomes are what they start from but once they establish, they form a large crown. They don't like wet feet but they do use a fair bit of water, which is why I use irrigation, besides I couldn't be arsed. I'll be leaving the beds where they are when I move the plant, Dad can use them to grow stuff in, and I'll buy a new one for our place. I will take the trellis with me though. I'll probably set up some form of drip irrigation instead of the soaker hose. Being an established plant I just give it a deep watering once a week, unless it rains. We get a good amount of rain most summers so irrigation isn't always necessary.

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Cheers.  I am getting more enthusiastic about this the more I think about it.  

You are the only one I know doing this so I am sorry to be a pest.  If I used a heavy twine and simply cut it from the top would the bines just fall to the ground for harvest ?  

I gather than they die back over winter so I am thinking that after harvest I could just lop them off and start over again in the Spring time.   It is a pity I aren't a couple of months earlier, I could have made a start this year and had them rooted.   I still might see if I can chase down some rhizomes and see if I can't make a start  this season.   I think I have the ideal spot but I doubt I can go much higher than 3 metres.  

What sort of yield have you had from your pictured set up ? 

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You could get a couple of fencing poles, the ones with the kink at the end, put a footing in and set a pole into the concrete that just fits inside the bigger pole. 

Tie your bine to the pole, lift and lock into position. Reverse when harvesting. That’ll get around ladders and what not. 

As far as rhizomes are concerned, heaps online or from ya digger mates down the road. 

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Everything is out of stock at Diggers... Wrong time of year I suppose. 

But this mob has the lot -

https://www.whitehousenursery.com.au/hops/

I have been thinking of securing the frame independent of the raised beds.  The wicking beds in particular are tricky because you can't secure anything low without perforating the liner.  I'd be happier concreting the uprights in on either side of the bed.  Good idea.

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They would fall down if you cut the twine from the top, but you'd still need a ladder to get up there to cut them. The other point is, while they do die off over winter, they're best not cut down until they do die off properly rather than straight after harvest, as they are moving/storing nutrients in the root system for the winter. If you had a trellis that could be lowered and raised, they could be lowered for harvest then raised back up until they die back, then cut down. 

As for yield, around 200g dry flowers each season. But being down there your yield will likely be bigger than mine - it's a better climate for hop growing in terms of flowering. Two factors there, longer daylight hours and colder winters. 

Next winter when I cut the crown out I'm gonna take a few rhizomes to restart in our yard, but I'll store them in the fridge for a month before planting to try to mimic the cold winter conditions. All my plants had their best yields in the first year, probably because they came from colder climates. I'm figuring if I do this each year then the yield will be more consistent rather than dropping every year. 

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Good advice regarding the chopping down. Good sense. 

I suppose I could loop the twine through pulleys (or even just holes in the frame ) and tie them off at the bottom so I could lower them for harvest and raise them again as you suggest with the trellis without climbing a ladder.   Designing these structures is half the fun. 

 

 

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Burning is actually a good idea at the right time of year. 

Pulley systems are the go, like a flag pole. My system eventually will be a pulley system on the kinked pole system in wicking beds. 

 

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Burning is quick and easy 😜. They were cut down first though. I think I killed that plant though, the soil kept smouldering underneath for days afterwards, which was great for getting rid of the nutgrass but killed the hops as well. I wasn't too concerned though, it was a Hallertau plant that was doing nothing anyway. It gave me about 10 cones in its final year. Didn't even bother harvesting them.

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On 11/28/2018 at 9:58 PM, James of Bayswater said:

or even just holes in the frame

Hi James

I have done similar at home (in Belgrave South).  See this link for a photo.  It is also in a discussion on hop growing.

You can see the poly rope on the angles.  It is a bit hard to see in the photos but the poly rope threads through an eye bolt at the top of a 2.1 m garden stake bolted to a 2.4 m steel picket (approximately 4 m of growing height) plus the angle of the string line.  The poly rope goes down the post to the ground.  As the hop grows, I can release some of the poly rope to get even longer length of hop growth - the lower part of the plant droops, but thinks that the hops has not reached the top of the post so keeps growing.  Probably end up with nearly 6 metres of growing "height" by the time I stop releasing the rope.  When ready to harvest I can let out more of the rope so I can stand on the ground and pick the hops. 

Last year I used twine but it rotted so I had all sorts of repair twine where the original twine broke.  Once all the hops were picked I just wound the hop bine around the base of the plant.  A month or two later I just cut the bine at the crown.

Cheers Shamus

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Brilliant Shamus.  I can see exactly what you are doing and its a great idea.  Getting the most height (or maybe length) out of the bines has been puzzling me and that is a very clever solution.  Thanks for the the link to the thread.  Lots of great information there.  

I am definitely going to do this.  I was in the garden today laying some drip irrigation and I was eyeing off my options for next season.  I think I need to visit a hop farm in the next couple of months to get up close and personal with the plants and pick a few brains.  

Thanks.

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2 minutes ago, James of Bayswater said:

Brilliant Shamus.  I can see exactly what you are doing and its a great idea.  Getting the most height (or maybe length) out of the bines has been puzzling me and that is a very clever solution.  Thanks for the the link to the thread.  Lots of great information there.  

I am definitely going to do this.  I was in the garden today laying some drip irrigation and I was eyeing off my options for next season.  I think I need to visit a hop farm in the next couple of months to get up close and personal with the plants and pick a few brains.  

Thanks.

I cannot take the credit.  I just adapted the idea to my situation.  I saw it on an American website during my research phase.  A dude was growing his hops in several big planters.  Each had a long stake hold the string line.  When the hop plant had nearly reached the top of the string he just let more out.  It sounded like he even had the lower section of the hop plant laying on the ground.

Cheers Shamus

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29 minutes ago, Ben 10 said:

garden trashed today by hail, i'm not growing much

39 one day, hail the next........

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Dual purpose hop trellis, great idea. 

Mind you, mine could probably be used as a gallows as well actually, it's a very similar shape 😂

Edited by Otto Von Blotto
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Hi all,

Not growing any hops but thought I'd give an update on my summer vegetable patch. Plenty of cherry and full size tomatoes, sweetcorn, basil, lettuce still going, avocado from next door, figs and plums not in picture starting to fruit. 20181126_075416.thumb.jpg.4ef80d67e7585cc6091baeca73b8baae.jpg

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So he’s the third and forth garlic harvests for the season, now it’s all about tomatoes. 

The smaller ones I’ve been growing for 4 years now to see if they will adapt to the climate I’m in. This is the first year that they have done exceptionally well. 20 odd Good bulb size and are as hot as a chilli. If they didn’t do well this year I was going to give up on them.

The larger one is the first tine I’ve grown this type. 20 odd Good bulb size and tastes excellent. Quite nutty in flavour. We will see how these go over the next few years.

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675F07B4-C34D-4879-95AE-4FF581BE73AD.jpeg

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I tried growing Garlic this year. They started off OK and then the possums got them along with everything else. 

See if the little toad can get through wire mesh next year.

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