I had a bunch of hops growing about 3 hours away from me (at parent's house, which has much more land). I went up one weekend, and they looked almost ready, then I went up a month later and they were very overly ready. They were mostly brown, and very papery. They looked like the color of leaves you rake into bags in the fall.
Upon closer inspection, though, they still plenty of the yellow lupulin under the leaves, and I actually liked the taste of them more than when they were fresh. More of an earthy flavor instead of floral/grassy.
Is there a reason why I shouldn't shouldn't use these hops? I'm thinking of putting them in an imperial stout, so I'm kind of thinking the flavor might be a better match in their current state.