HOPS! Planting for brewing this fall
We live in one of Charlotte's Brewery Districts. NoDa Brewing Company, Birdsong Brewing, Free Range Brewing and Salud Bottle Shop all call NoDa home. It's virtually impossible to live here without at least developing an appreciation of craft brewed beers. We've certainly developed a taste for the local brews, especially the IPA's. The ones with a hearty hops flavor.
From Wikipedia: "Hops are the female flowers (also called seed cones or strobiles) of the hop plant, Humulus lupulus.They are used primarily as a flavoring and stability agent in beer, to which they impart a bitter, tangy flavor, though hops are also used for various purposes in other beverages and herbal medicine."
Years ago I brewed beer with friends, when we were in college, but hadn't since then. This past year we picked up a small brew kit, brewed a little batch of beer, and decided to jump back in. Not hard core, not a lot of it, but certainly some and definitely just for fun.
We discovered that hops grow well in this climate. The plant is a vine and likes to climb, a lot. We have a frame in the back that Joey built as part of a work out area - posts are 12' - 14' high. Perfect for growing hops! We planted our first plants last week and we've ordered a couple more that should be in any day now. We'll be growing quite a bit, plenty of us and some to share.
It also fits into our desire for edible landscaping. It's a beautiful plant, unusual in the garden so striking for those that see it, and will create a lush "wall" of greenery for the entrance to the garden. More photos to come as these progress!