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How to Grow Hops for Profit in 6 Easy Steps

Learning how to grow hops for profit is what a lot of new gardening enthusiasts and farmers would want to do. Hops are one of the most lucrative crops to plant because they’re primarily used as ingredients in crafting beers due to their ability to keep these drinks fresher, bitter, and foamier. Given its use and popularity, it would be a waste not to use your gardening skills to grow fine and strong hops that you can sell for thousands of bucks.

Hops can be male or female, but only the females produce the flowers, known as hop cones. Like rhubarb, Hops are perennial plants that grow fruits annually without gardeners having to replant the crop. Although they come in different varieties and grown for a lot of purposes, hop cones are mainly used for brewing beer.

Prices for hops can range from $3 to $15 per pound. This is equivalent to almost $25,000 per acre of planted hops. With those numbers, it’s hard not to be tempted to turn hops growing into a business.

How to Grow Hops for Profit in 6 Easy Steps

Guide to Planting High-Qualify Hops

Hops are relatively easy to grow, but you have to do it properly if you want to enjoy high-quality cones. They’re usually grown from a rhizome and you can obtain one from your local brewery store. If not, there are many e-commerce stores on the internet that may ship rhizomes to your location.

Under the right conditions, your hops can grow up to 25 feet and produce ½ to 2 pounds of cones annually. Here’s the process of growing hops:

 

Step #1. Assess the Area Where You’ll Grow Your Hops

The best time to start planting hops is a few weeks after the frost has passed. If the weather is still a little bit chilly, you can start the planting process by doing some ground preparation. Till the soil and add some compost to it, so by the time you’re ready to plant your rhizomes, you won’t have to spend much time tilling and sowing.

When planting your hops, choose a location where it can get much sunlight. If possible, it should also be slightly elevated and the soil area should drain well. Be sure to use fertilizers that are rich in phosphate, potassium, and nitrogen when treating the soil.

 

Step #2. Plant the Hops

Once the final frost has passed and the ground is workable, it’s time to plant your rhizomes. You should plant the hop in rows of hills. Make sure to place at least 8 feet of distance between the crops as their roots can grow big quickly.

Bury the rhizomes about 6 to 12 inches into the soil. Be sure that they are placed vertically with its shoots pointing up to the sky.

 

Step #3. Water Them Lightly

Once your hop is planted on the soil, the next thing to do is to nurture them by watering them slightly. Make sure that you don’t overwater the rhizome as it could cause the root to rot. Once they’ve established roots, they will start to grow quickly, especially during the height of the summer season.

 

Step #5. Support Your Hops

Once your hop rhizomes reach 1 to 2 feet, you’ll want to set-up a type of support to accommodate their rapid growth. Commercial hop growers usually use trellises that go as high as 20 feet or more. Trellising is important because it allows the hop vines to get as much sun as they can so they can produce flowers.

 

Step #6. Harvest Your Hops

By mid-August or early September, or before the first frost, your hops should be ready for harvest (but the exact timing for harvest may on the location). You’ll be able to tell by looking at their cones. If they are starting to lighten in color, it’s usually one of the first indications that your hops are ready for harvest.

However, the most accurate way to tell if your hops are ready for harvest is to conduct a dry matter test. You can harvest your hops by simply picking the cone from the bine. Place the cones on a flat surface and dry them under the sunlight. Once they’re completely dried, pack the hops on an airtight container and refrigerate until they’re ready for transport.

 

Mini Greenhouse Gardening Benefits

Mini greenhouses will make your gardening experience even better. Having a mini greenhouse of your own gives you the freedom to plant almost any type of crop you want. Whether you’re planting for passion or living, a mini greenhouse can give you benefits that traditional garden planting can’t.

Other amazing benefits of mini greenhouse gardening include plant protection from harsh weather conditions, the opportunity to plant more plant varieties throughout the year, protection from the constant threat of pest infestations, as well as extended growing seasons.

 

Planning on Learning How to Grow Hops for Profit?

Hops can be expensive and extremely challenging to grow, but the rewards that come with successfully growing it will be worth the expenses and effort. If you’re starting still starting, be sure to follow the simple steps above on how to grow hops for profit. Eventually, your business will flourish and before you know it, you’ll be producing and distributing tons of crops all over the country.

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How To Prevent Root Rot In Hydroponics: 3 Useful Tips

If you’re a newbie gardener who’s looking to find ways to hone your skills, you’d want to learn how to prevent root rot in hydroponics even before this problem affects your plants.

Hydroponics can be advantageous to crops in more ways than one. However, it also comes with risks of diseases, such as root rot, which can be destructive or even lethal to your plants.

Unfortunately, there are no effective methods to recover the wilted parts that were affected by the root rot once it hits your plants. The only thing you can do if you do not want this catastrophe to befall your crops is to prevent it before it happens. Read on to learn more about this subject.

 

What is Root Rot?

Root rot is a disease that attacks the plant roots and causes them to suffer decay. This usually happens when a lack of oxygen supply occurs in the substrate.

To give you an idea, think about plant roots that are submerged in water that only has a little oxygen in it. Over time, the plant suffocates and dies.

Aside from rot and decay, this disease also leads to the proliferation of fungi that are naturally present in the soil. These include Rhizoctonia, Alternaria, Pythium, Botrytis, Fusarium, or Phytophthora. As soon as fungi colonies start to grow, they tend to target the weakened roots and infect your precious plant babies.

Once the plant becomes infected, they won’t be able to take in what they need to grow – water, oxygen, and other nutrients. When this happens, it won’t be long before the plant dies.

 

What is Hydroponics?

In case you’re not aware, the term hydroponic is derived from a Latin word that means “working water”. To put it simply, hydroponics is an art that involves growing various types of plants without soil. If you’re like most people, the first thing that comes to mind when somebody talks about hydroponics would be a picture of plants with roots suspended into the water without using any type of growing medium.

 

Avoiding Root Rot in Hydroponic Systems

Detecting and identifying root rot can be tricky. When your plants get infected, their leaves and roots gradually wither until the whole crop itself dies from the lack of nutrients, which is a common symptom of many diseases.

 

What causes root rot in hydroponics?

One of the requirements in hydroponics systems is oxygen. Without it, your plants are basically on the road to death. On the other hand, lack of such is one of the major triggers for root rot, and it must be avoided at all costs.

Just like when planting in soil, you loosen up the ground so that your plants’ roots can have their required intake of oxygen. That is the case for crops grown in aqueous solutions as well. If they cannot breathe, they would not be able to grow.

Another agent for root rot is the temperature. The last thing you would want in your system are parasites that leech nutrients intended for your plants and infect the water during the process. In common terms, these fungi are called molds.

One of the best breeding grounds for these is warm and moist areas. For this reason, if the water temperature inside your reservoir is high, then you are susceptible to it. Something as minor as letting the solutions exposed to sunlight can already be a risk factor.

 

3 Useful Tips on How to prevent root rot in hydroponics

There is good news! Root rot in hydroponics can be prevented! Just follow these tips:

Tip#1: Use the right air pump

If you do not want root rot to affect your plants, you merely have to avoid its causes. If you need oxygen, keep the water bubbling by providing an air pump of appropriate size, and also give importance to proper ventilation in the room.

 

Tip #2: Maintain the temperature

The temperature should be maintained within the 70 to 80 degrees F range. Get rid of any materials that can make your system vulnerable to infections, and make sure not to disturb your crops while they are trying to grow.

 

Tip #3: Get rid of the rotten parts

However, if you failed in preventing the disease, then the rotten parts should be removed immediately. Cut them off as there is no chance of reviving them, and focus on the potential new growth instead. Fix your hydroponics system and eliminate the risks.

 

Why Give Greenhouse Gardening a Try?

Greenhouse gardening offers numerous benefits to greens aficionados who dare to take their gardening experience to the next level. Aside from acting as a shield against the effects of inclement weather, a mini, hobby, or semi-pro greenhouse can also serve as a protective layer that keeps harmful bugs and critters at bay.

What’s more, its enclosed structure allows you to control your plants’ growing conditions including the temperature, light, moisture, and ventilation of the greenhouse’s internal environment. With a controlled environment, you’ll be able to extend growing seasons and grow plants that aren’t native to your area.

 

Conclusion

No matter how well-informed you are about how to prevent root rot in hydroponics, you cannot completely eradicate the risks. Therefore, to avoid the worst-case scenario, you should be prepared to sacrifice the infected for the sake of others. While you’re at it, consider trying your hand at greenhouse gardening as well.

 

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