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Hop Irrigation System

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Doc

Doctor's Orders Brewing
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My hops arrived last week, and I've been giving some thought to keeping them in good health during the hot Sydney summer.
I've got the plot past the local planning surveyor which is away from the rest of the garden (and also the irrigation system we can't use here in Sydney).
I'm thinking if I get a 20 litre bucket and hook up some irrigation pipe to it (ie drill a hole in the side) with a tap on the irrigation tube (so I can turn of the flow if we actually get rain), and a drip irrigation nozzle to direct water to my hop plants. The bucket will be attached to the fence about 2 meters higher than the plants so will be able to use gravity nicely to provide water flow.
The theory is that I should only have to fill the 20 litre bucket every day or two (hopefully less frequently) in order to provide a nice drip feed to my two hop plants (Hersbrucker and Columbus). I plan to just fill the bucket from the garden hose.
Has anyone else given any thought to how you plan to keep your plants in the necessary water they need to grow big and healthy ?
I'm thinking I could use a water timer on it also, to further restrict the flow to daylight hours.
I've attached a quick (bad) diagram to help.

Beers,
Doc

HopIrrigation.png
 

mobrien

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Looks like it would work perfectly - we use a near identical system in a greenhouse at work (not for hops though!). 20L does 4 pots for about a week - thats in Brisbane :D

Make sure you get the adjustable drippers...

Matt
 

Doc

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Cheers Matt.

Yep I have the adjustable slow drippers left over from my home made sparge arm (for those older members that remember it) experiments.

My hops will hopefully be good competition for the fence where the neighbours choco (sp?) plant migrates into my yard in the alternate months.

Beers,
Doc
 

kungy

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One thing you could try which may be a bit more hidden from view is having a water reservoir at ground level, then use absorbent material such as string then use capillary action to water the plant gradually over time. Definitely not as foolproof as what you initially came up with but if aesthetics is of consideration then this could work

Will
 

johnno

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Doc,
From what I've seen of them growing, I reckon you could just chuck the washing machine water on them and they would love it.
These things are crazy weeds.

cheers
johnno
 

Doc

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kungy said:
One thing you could try which may be a bit more hidden from view is having a water reservoir at ground level, then use absorbent material such as string then use capillary action to water the plant gradually over time. Definitely not as foolproof as what you initially came up with but if aesthetics is of consideration then this could work

Will
[post="67749"][/post]​
Aesthetics aren't really an issue. The plot is out the back of my brew shed. But that does mean when they start growing I could setup the webcam and do some time lapse photography to watch them grow :lol:

johnno said:
Doc,
From what I've seen of them growing, I reckon you could just chuck the washing machine water on them and they would love it.
These things are crazy weeds.

cheers
johnno
[post="67751"][/post]​
Maybe not washing machine water, but I think I've found another source to reuse the water from the CFC on brew day :p

Doc
 

barls

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just a question doc where did you get them from
 

Doc

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barls said:
just a question doc where did you get them from
[post="67758"][/post]​
Grumpys in Adelaide.
I think Goliaths in Adelaide were getting them too.

Beers,
Doc
 

Doc

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Alien boy said:
From a horticultural point of view and an environmental one as well using grey water( sink bath washing machine ETC..) is an excellent option.It may block up yuor drippers however.

Rather than a constant drip of water you would be better to water as required with a can in the morning and evenings as well in high summer.A constant drip will only encourage the wrong bacteria to breed in the soil and worst case is anaerobic soil which prevents plant health and vigour.A good deep water every 2/3 days in early spring should help to develop deeper and stronger root system.

These plants are in the same genus as cannabis,which means they should be hardy and reasonably resilient to hot conditions.

Go organic with any fertilisers you may use and mulch the root zone with fine compost or something smelly (mushroom compost is good).
[post="67766"][/post]​
Cheers AB.
I'm not a gardener, but that seems to all make sense.

Thanks,
Doc
 

barls

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cool thanks mate i wasnt sure and i might be get my self on in the future
 

Duff

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Alien boy said:
From a horticultural point of view and an environmental one as well using grey water( sink bath washing machine ETC..) is an excellent option.
[post="67766"][/post]​
Not really. The amount of Boron found in washing powder ends up in very high levels within the soil, rendering it toxic in some cases with repeated use. It's partly the reason why golf courses irrigated with effluent water need closer soil management than those who don't use grey water.

Try the sub-surface dripper option. I've seen trials done in Bowen, Qld, (read hot, dry, etc.) with sub-surface watering on street scape turf and the difference is amazing. Bunnings sell it in a roll of a few metres.
 

Steve

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Doc
You dont need a time lapse camera.....go away for 5 mins to get a beer and it'll have grown another inch by the time you get back. Mine was in the ground for its first year last year. Grew up to about 10 metres! I have mine in the vegie patch which just gets a good squirt with the hose every second day. Your system sounds very good but you cant beat standing with a hose and a beer at the end of the day admiring your hop plant. Mine honestly grew an inch a day. Have fun.....
Cheers
Steve
 

deebee

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I agree with Steve and the Alien: a constant drip is not ideal. Hops want well-drained soil so if you have any drainage issues at all, don't give them a constant drip through summer. Give them a good drenching every day through the height of summer or maybe every second day if you have a mild spell. They want the soil to almost dry out before the next drink.

My soil is very sandy and drains like a sink, but I still let them dry out between waterings. I have mine on a dripper system in summer, but water restrictions mean I only get to run that for 15 minutes twice a week. I hand water the rest of the time. To encourage root growth, which is the goal in the first couple of years, feed it with a seaweed extract liquid fertiliser, half strength every week.

If you are using greywater, buy the Planet Ark washing powder. It is designed for greywater use and yes it does wash clothes. Even then it is better to let it run into a settling tank and then tap it off the top.
 

homebrewworld.com

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Doc
Im a Horticulturist by trade and you makin me feel like a slacko', but as the others generally say i tend to agree.

'Chuck it in the ground and water it when you think of it' IMO. and you will get bloody great results all the same. Throw some mulch around the base if you feel like it ,there ya go!

There is a very fine line between under-watering and over-watering, so dont get to caught up in this.
Spend the time on drinkin a few beers, and spare the rocket science on irrigation.
Hope they go well for ya mate,
:)
 

TidalPete

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homebrewworld.com said:
Doc
Im a Horticulturist by trade and you makin me feel like a slacko', but as the others generally say i tend to agree.

'Chuck it in the ground and water it when you think of it' IMO. and you will get bloody great results all the same. Throw some mulch around the base if you feel like it ,there ya go!

There is a very fine line between under-watering and over-watering, so dont get to caught up in this.
Spend the time on drinkin a few beers, and spare the rocket science on irrigation.
Hope they go well for ya mate,

[post="67798"][/post]​
The above says it all Doc. As long as your plants are well established by the start of the hot weather (With a dose of a good complete fertiliser in Spring) & are given a good deep water 2 or 3 times a week (With a beer in your hand :p ) all should be well. A good idea is to check the PH of your soil to ensure it's ok before planting. I am one of the lucky ones & have a bore for all my watering. Will be interested to know how your hop plants turn out.

:beer:
 

deebee

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I would go with homebrewworld's advice.

Not only is he a horticulturalist, but his hops are greener than mine. :lol:
 

Borret

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Another question for our horticultural type friends.

What adverse effects does growing the hops up a fence or the side of a shed have over the free stanning trellice? I have a shed (ala workshop, ala brewery) with a northeren aspect which is a good 4+metre high but am concerned about the radiant heat coming off the shed mid summer (it's cream coloured so does reflect a little heat).
Am I better to build a free standing trellice away from the shed or would a wire standing a little out from the shed but supported by it suffice. I want to give this baby it's best chance at survival but also what is easiest and cheapest for me to erect.

Any thoughts/direction?

Cheers

Borret
 

Steve

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Borret it should be fine climbing on the shed. Probably best to attach some big bits of wooden trellis (from Bunnings) to the side of the shed for it to climb on. As long as its in full sun, the soil is rich and full of organic matter (and worms) and gets a good deep watering every couple of days and the tendrils have something to grab hold of it'll be fine wherever you put it. I have an 8metre tall by 1.5m wide steel custom made free standing trellis.
Cheers - good luck
Steve
 

Doc

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Thanks for all the feedback guys.
I'm looking forward to planting them in the next month when I transform the patch where they will reside.

Beers,
Doc
 

Borret

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Steve said:
Borret it should be fine climbing on the shed. Probably best to attach some big bits of wooden trellis (from Bunnings) to the side of the shed for it to climb on. As long as its in full sun, the soil is rich and full of organic matter (and worms) and gets a good deep watering every couple of days and the tendrils have something to grab hold of it'll be fine wherever you put it. I have an 8metre tall by 1.5m wide steel custom made free standing trellis.
Cheers - good luck
Steve
[post="67816"][/post]​
8m tall. Damb .... did you have to put in a DA for that? :D

Borret
 

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