Vines and Climbers forum→BEER!!! -- no wait, I mean, HOPS!!!

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Lowell MA, Zone 6; near border
PitSmoker
May 28, 2020 9:10 PM CST
Hi.
I've been here just long enough to realize that everyone starts out by saying "I'm a Rookie here!" I am too... but I'm not going to tell you that. Smiling

So... I live in New England. I'm securely in Zone 6a, but near-bordering on 5b. Merrimack Valley, MA I recently bought a NUGGET Hops plant from a well-reputed local nursery-- But I admit that I bought it rather blind, in a fairly whimsical manner. (Oh, come on-- you've all been there!) I intend to put it in the ground at a trellis I'm building, and I have about a dozen questions if not more. Would you please and thank you very much, answer what you can? I'll number them for later easy reference. Here's my starter pack:

1) My understanding is that all commercial Hops Plants are FEMALE, and no cross pollination is necessary with another species. True?

2) I'm a stout drinker. (Stouts, porters, malty lagers; ambers... an occasional red IPA, among myriad of other brews.) I don't love super strong IPAs, but I like super strong IPAs much better than super light lagers & pils. What other hops could I plant WITH this Nugget to bring me.... options or diversity? I'm interested in this question BOTH from the Taste and the biodiversity/garden/visual/symbiosis- interest point of view.

3) I understand that these plants contain rhizomes that are extremely aggressive. I'm fighting a continually losing battle with BOTH basic and Oriental Bittersweet in my yard-- Oh, and creeping subterranean white rose canes of some variety not to mention lily of the valley... I can promise you I don't want any of that. -- if anyone has an idea about killing these other things permanently without harming my (grass, garden, ecosystem) I'm all ears. thanks.

4) How LOW into the dirt do these rhizomes creep? I have this crazy notion that I can pour a concrete box underground with simple forms-- 1 in by... what? 8 inches deep? 12? 16? that will simply contain these in a 1, 1.5 foot-by- 3 or 4-foot container. Kinda like a flower pot but custom and in earth.

5) If I did this, does the box also need a concrete floor?

6) What about nutrients and ambient feeding, beneficial insects, etc? My understanding is that based on climate, acidity and composition (not to mention latitude), Hops do pretty well in New England. What of these native characteristics am I stumping by creating this box, and, if I didn't add the floor do I help the situation, or not really?

7) Must the box reach OVER ground level, or is at/immediately below (like, barely an inch or 1/2 inch) suffice? I'm thinking that if I find things are trailing over and invading the rest of my yard, I can always use a spade to CUT them at the box' top surface/lip, even if that's an inch under grade.

8) Anything else I'm missing here? Be gentle. Smiling

THANK YOU!
Name: Deb
Planet Earth (Zone 8b)
Region: Pacific Northwest Million Pollinator Garden Challenge
Image
Bonehead
May 28, 2020 9:31 PM CST
I have a hop vine planted at the foot of a weeping willow, likely not the ideal location. But I t grows well, climbs Way up into the willow, and reliably flowers. No clue re beer making, I'm not one for home brew. Best of luck.
I want to live in a world where the chicken can cross the road without its motives being questioned.
Lowell MA, Zone 6; near border
PitSmoker
May 28, 2020 9:40 PM CST
Bonehead said:I have a hop vine planted at the foot of a weeping willow, likely not the ideal location. But I t grows well, climbs Way up into the willow, and reliably flowers. No clue re beer making, I'm not one for home brew. Best of luck.


Thanks!! They certainly do seem hardy-- like not much will really bother them. As a matter of fact, there's a... 60? Year old red oak within 30 feet, and I'm not supposed to be concerned.

How long has your hops vine been there, and has it spread at all? How maniacal are the offshoots?
Lowell MA, Zone 6; near border
PitSmoker
May 29, 2020 7:34 PM CST
Bump? (Sorry!)

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