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I would like to start growing my own hops and want to know what the ideal climate is. I've read that hops will grow in most areas of North America, but there must be places where they grow better than other. Do some varieties grow better in certain climates while another climate might be more suited towards a different variety?

  • I have a cousin in minnesota that grows hops to sell – user6629 Mar 28 '14 at 20:41
  • Just for some data points, we have one Willamette and one Nugget growing on the front of our house in Chicago. (southern exposure) With almost no attention, they grow like crazy and produce many pounds of hops each. – Tony Adams Dec 22 '16 at 14:39
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Hops can grow well anywhere between the 30th and 50th parallels. How well they do in a small-scale, home gardener setting is really up to how good of a gardener you are, which in turn comes down to how dedicated you are to their upkeep.

That said, hops are very fast growers and as such require a lot of water. This is why the Pacific Northwest of the US is a major hop growing region - they get a lot of rain there, meaning they don't need to provide much irrigation to keep the hop bines happy. But in your own back yard, as long as you're willing to water them thoroughly a couple of times per week and if you are sure to start them off in quality soil, they'll grow very well for you. In fact, they spread and can be invasive, not unlike morning glories.

I bought my rhizomes from Freshops. They have a good writeup on hop gardening on their site.

As far as different varieties go, the main thing to look out for is their pest and disease resistance. Some varieties are more susceptible to, say, powdery mildew than others. Choose varieties that are hardy against your region's known plant diseases and pests.

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Most hops in the US are grown in the Yakima valley, technically a desert. Watering hops may be necessary depending where you are located but let me assure you any water there would be irrigation from the grower, as there is little or no rainfall. Dripline has been recommended on many sites and I would predict this is the standard of the region.

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