My hop crop has contracted Downy Mildew and are failing. I don't want to spray chemicals on the crop, so I am letting it go. It is a blessing and a curse. Hops have played a very vital part of our farm from the beginning and I enjoyed being one of the first to grow hops in the South and contributing my farm to research, buy the time has come to find another crop to take it's place.
The blessing part is that now I have a lot more time to do other things on the farm because I am not bent over pulling weeds, stringing and pruning vines, and doing the multitude of other tasks that consumed 1/4 of my time on the farm.
I wont pull them out just yet, after all they are perennials, but trust me, they don't produce much if left to their own free will. I will miss the fun that I created with them, such as the hop festival, providing local breweries with fresh hops, and giving tours and workshops, but I will not, repeat, will not miss working in the hop yard!
Goodbye bitter flower.