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Czech Wild Hops

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Postby kay » Tue May 02, 2017 12:45 pm

I got a small bag of Czech wild hops, from the south of cz. rep. Looking to give to someone for a small batch of beer. Can have a few bottles in return. It might not be enough though, i never brewed beer. The quantity is about about a pint and a half and thats about it. Contains seeds too. And a yellow powder that i was considering smoking lol.

Picked a nice bag over there and dried them and stored them since last season. I didn't think they were good for brewing at the time, but since have researched a bit and reckon they may be interesting to brew as would be an old wild variety, compared to commercially cz hops..

live in the sligo area or can send to someone if there is interest. To me the hops taste like the flavor from an apa from boyne breweries. Pretty bitter to taste and sweet to smell.

I will be going back to the area this Autumn, and will collect alot more. If someone is interested in larger amounts we could do some barter. Basically the wild hops are all over the place there.

Considering trying to get some land there and start growing hops and working with the local wild varieties as well as modern types. How much of a market is there for hops. To my mind the market is growing all the time and it'd be worth-while in the long run.

What kind of quantities are craft breweries looking for per season on any one type of hops?

What are peoples opinions on it anyways??
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Postby Larkins » Tue May 02, 2017 2:34 pm

For our current recipes we are only using Czech Saaz but it would be nice to have a source a local supplier of good quality hops in Ireland.

I can't give you our quantities as we are only just starting but we would be using around 10kg per brew.
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Postby kay » Tue May 02, 2017 3:02 pm

I'd be aiming to grow hops in Czech republic not Ireland.
Just would aim to sell the hops here.

Haven't researched Ireland but Czech area i'm looking at is trad beer country. Wild hops all over the shop. Good weather for hops. Land is more affordable there too.

I was surprised by the abundance there, and having found some research on them realized there are lots of interesting old wild varieties that nobody knows/cares about but seem to be as viable as comercially known varieties..

It's an untapped market and everybody is looking for a marketing ploy with their beers, and new flavors but i haven't heard a wild hop trend yet. Just ready to jump on board though lol.

Well wild and commercial would be the longterm aim. These things take time i would imagine.
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Postby Drum » Wed May 03, 2017 1:25 am

Hi Kay. I like the way you're thinking. Some of those wild varieties could be very interesting if they have been allowed to cross pollinate and grow freely for a long time, on the other hand a lot of them could be just escaped commercial hops and be similar to everyday saaz or other traditional czech hops. The fact that the hops you have are seeded is a good sign that some wild breeding has occured so you may be onto something.
The time consuming part will be selecting the interesting and commercially viable varieties.
Most hop trials/breeding programs will first isolate plants with good growth charecteristics for the local climate and good disease resistance. By starting with wild plants you have a head start on these aspects as you can see how they grow in the wild, but you will still have to grow a few varieties for a few years and select the most viable strains for brewing. So essentially you are looking at 3 or 4 years before you have a captured wild variety selected and propagated to a point that you have enough to start selling.

If I were to buy land and start growing like you're thinking, I would start with a large crop of an established czech variety that you know you can sell. That way you have income from the land and time to develop your wild varieties and bring them to market.

If you would be willing to send me some of those seeds I'll gladly try and grow them out and see what they turn into. I would offer to brew with the hops you have but I am in cork so I don't know how I would get beer back to you afterwards. Maybe someone closer to you will offer or better yet give it a go yourself. It wouldn't hurt to know a bit about brewing if you intend to grow hops commercially.

re. quantities of hops used, as a homebrewer I get through about 2 or 3 kilos of different hops per year. From my estimates a small brewery putting out 1000L/week would use 250 to 500 Kg per year based on 5 to 10 Kg per 1000L.
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Postby kay » Thu May 11, 2017 11:06 am

Hi there Drum,

If you want some seeds i'll send them down to you. Pm me your address. I'll send you some wild hops in the Autumn as well to see what you think of them.

I didn't realize it'd be so difficult to sprout the seeds until i checked up on line how to do it. One thing which may be a problem is I dried the seeds for a short time in a plum drier over a cz stove. It's basically a steel cabinet with shelves on top of a russian style stove. The fire wasn't under them or anything. And stove was not very hot. I would reckon seeds towards the top of the dryer would be viable and towards the bottom would be questionable. Any ways i'll send them if you want and you can try.
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Postby Will_D » Sat May 13, 2017 9:55 am

Growing hops from seeds is not recommended in Ireland.

You will get male and female plants.

Only the females are cultivated for brewing purposes.

The male hop plant is listed as a "Noxious Weed" and you can be fined if found to be growing it!!

So please beware.
Drinking:........HBC AG Kit American APA
Pri Fermenting:..AG Paulaner
Sec Fermenting:..LaTrappe Dubbel, AG Pilsner, Aventius AG Clone
Kegged: .........Cider
To Brew:.........HoorsLite, Hefe Dunkel, Dark Pilsner
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Postby kay » Sat May 13, 2017 2:10 pm

LOL this addition to the noxious weed act written in 1965 by Charles Haughty. He was probably like, the place will be full of hops unless we ban the males to stop reproduction. That or he got paid of by some grower who didn't want wild hops pollinating his crop. Interesting why he would ban them.

"Ragwort, Thistle, Dock, Common Barberry, Male Wild Hop and Spring Wild Oat are scheduled as noxious weeds under the Noxious Weeds Act 1936. Any person responsible for land on which these weeks are growing is liable, upon conviction, to be fined. "

Now when was the last time someone was caught growing dock leaves. Jess Mother Nature is a devious one isn't she.

Bit of a discussion on it over here. ... ops-seeds/

Realistically though the males are easily distinguished and removed from the females as far as I can see. You don't want the males pollinating the females. The female flower alone is used to make beer.
Info on Hops genetics
Cz Wild Hops ... es/46.aspx ... public.pdf
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Postby Tube » Sat May 13, 2017 11:33 pm

Males in themselves don't have any impact on females other than to induce them to produce seeds. English hops are usually full of seeds as England is full of wild hops.

The legislation bit had only a slight relevance during Ireland's flutter with commercial hop growing which only lasted from 1961 to the early 90s (in reality it was over 10 years earlier).
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