Want to multiple your hop harvest with minimal effort and expense? Keen to spread the love of hops with a beer-giving gardening gift? Then take cuttings of your hop plants. It’s easy, and here’s how…
1. Select a shoot with at least three pairs of leaves
Wander up to your hop plant and ask it kindly if it would mind sparing one of its shoots (or more if you’re going cutting crazy). It won’t be painful. And it doesn’t even need to say goodbye to the shoot for quite some time yet. Permission granted, select a shoot with at least three pairs of leaves.
2. Snip out the middle leaves
Snip out a pair of leaves from the middle of the shoot. You can use a fancy gardening knife or a thumb nail. And apologise profusely for any pain this may have caused (you lying sod).
3. Bury the shoot in compost
Fill a decent sized pot with compost and bury the leafless segment of shoot about 30-40mm deep. You need to keep this in place throughout the growing season so pin it in place with a peg or bent coat hanger.
4. Set aside and let it grow
Then all you have to do is wait… As the hop plant grows, so will your staked shoot. If it gets dry, water it, and over time the nude area of shoot below the compost will start to develop roots. When it comes to the post-harvest cutting down of your hop plant a new rhizome will be fully formed within the pot, so simply sever the growth either side and, next year, a spanking new plant will emerge.
5. Brew some beer
Even more than the previous year.